We bring the FAST and laughs to pharmacy.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

On The Menu

A very large gentleman comes into the pharmacy as my store manager and I settle in for out picnic lunch of raw vegetables and pretzels. He is here from the ER with two sheets of meds.

Indomethacin, Colchicine, Vicodin

Guess that means you have the biochemical equivalent of glass shards in your big toes and may contribute to the funny wobble your over 400lb M & M shaped physique manages as it ambles ever so slowly to prevent my luncheon. This guy was the adult embodiment of Cleveland Brown Jr. from The Cleveland Show (yes I watch lots of cartoons, deal with it).

I prepared his prescriptions as he shopped and then explained to him what each was and what it did. He was already on Colchicine (so we didn't fill it) and Allopurinol to reduce uric acid levels to prevent gout attacks.....guess it didn't work... Did I forget to mention he was on Medicaid because apparently now being gigantically fat is a disability which is complete bullsh*t!

Along with the prescriptions he purchased the super huge bag of Sweet Chili Doritos, a bag of glazed donut holes, and a chocolate chip brownie. I see we are trying to keep the weight and the salt levels down.....

Seriously! What the f*ck is going on that our government allows this kind of bullsh*t to be paid for by the taxpayers. He is getting food stamps, health care, housing assistance, and why? Because he is so f*cking fat he can't possibly hold a normal job. So let him starve... This type of government wasteful spending is as shameful as the bank and auto industry bailouts! No one wants to take responsibility for their current living situation. You make the choices, you deal with the consequences! The taxpayers shouldn't have to pay for your fat lazy *ss!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Unexpected Benefits of Pharmacy I: No bodily fluids

Once upon a time, I was a happy little lab rat, doing experiments for the betterment of science. These regularly included using animal models. I was mostly accustomed to the procedures, knowing the necessity. Then, I left the Dark Side to become a pharmacist. I knew I had definitely picked the right field when I did my Ambulatory rotation in the field, and remembered why I had been so secretly glad to be rejected to Nursing School all those years ago (insufficiently empathetic, I think they said)--you don't have to deal with nearly as much pus as a pharmacist. Or other assorted excretia of any body (dogs, cats, goats, and alpacas included).

So, thank your lucky stars on those really rough days: It could be worse, you could be elbow-deep in a truly ugly wound, and need to scratch your nose.

And, when someone comes in and says, "Hey could you look at this..." and starts removing clothing, smile as you say, "That's not really my area of expertise, you might want to keep those pants on, thank you!"

This was all sparked by yet another bloody elbow wound on our border collie mix. In our house, the one with the most alphabet soup after their name gets to deal with anything icky. Pus, blood, nausea, and whining were involved. And then the darn dog ate her bandages off, again, so we get to start over tomorrow. (The dog is just fine, she's too ornery to let a little pyo get her down.)

Thank the heavens I get to go to work tomorrow, there's (usually) no blood there, barring another Deli accident. We still have Lysol:30 time, though, just in case.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Hidden Hazards of Pharmacy I: Muzak

It's pervasive. It's...perky. It's all the music you thought you'd never have to hear again...and it plays again and again and again, every day. You can set your watch by the strains of "Leroy Brown", "Blue Suede Shoes" or, heaven forbid, "Dancing Queen." And that's on a regular, non-Holiday season day. Starting the day after Thanksgiving, every odd-ball rehash of the once-loved Christmas classics is thrown at us, making it impossible to sing along, totally ruining whatever Christmas spirit there might be left lurking in my heart.

Some days are even more disturbing, as the songs that were popular in our own hey-days are played...but changed, redone by bands not even born when the originals were released.

The worst is when you're mindlessly bopping along to a rare, old favorite...and someone catches you at it. Or, when 2 am rolls around and you're thinking of things you might have left undone, the faint strains of the day's soundtracks starts rolling through your thoughts, as if hearing it once wasn't bad enough!

Where is the defense for this, the subtle mind-bending of innocent pharmacy staff? They never warned us about this!

Beware of the Muzak brain worms!
Burger Doodle Chicks

Monday, February 22, 2010

Dude! Where's your pharmacy?

It seems that the location of the pharmacy I work at has left some customers coming into my store thinking we are another pharmacy. This would not be a problem, except the customer is never wrong, especially about the location of where they or their neighbor, or their 4 times removed cousins-sisters-baby daddy dropped off their prescription.

At least three times a week we have someone come to pick up a prescription that we do not have, much less have the person in question in our computer system. Most leave after yelling at us after they realize this is not ABC Pharmacy, this is XYZ Pharmacy, clearly labeled on several areas in the store, including the large blinking sign out front. Every time this happens, I always wonder does McDonald's and Burger King have to deal with this lack of genius?

- McFury CPhT

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Observations from the other side of the counter

Friday I went under the knife for wisdom teeth surgery - everything is going swimmingly so far, don't worry anyone!

But it gave me a little bit of insight into how things like this work. I was there with my roommate, who was taking care of most of the work for me. I learned that when people say "Can you rush this, he just got out of surgery" that it is totally bogus. I couldn't have cared less if it had taken an extra 15 or 30 minutes. To be honest, everything from the first injection of Versed through the hydrocodone-induced nap when we got home was kind of a pleasant buzz anyway. As it was, we were at MY pharmacy, so I barely had time to shop for nail polish while they were checking the voice mail and filling my prescriptions.

Anyway, I don't consider myself to have a particularly high tolerance to opioids, but I do generally have a high tolerance to drowsiness/dizziness side effects. I can take a couple of Benadryl and still work just fine, I know how Flexeril affects me, and still function quite well on most of the things that are supposed to slow you down.

Having said all of that, how do people ever get anything done on hydrocodone? I spent literally 4 hours out of the house yesterday, and all I did was shop. 2 video game stores, looking for accessories for my newly acquired Wii, the restaurant supply store, Target, Walmart, grocery store, the mattress store. And then I came home and had the strangest urge to make homemade vegetable broth, and ended up making a couple gallons of hot and sour soup. By the time I was done I wasn't even hungry, and it's still in the fridge.

I can see why people get into taking it. I was pain-free, giddy, and industrious all day. Of course, today I switched to tramadol so as to not take hydrocodone when I don't need it, and I haven't done anything but eat ice cream and play video games all day. Maybe that's the problem.

Tomorrow, though, is back to the grind, and I can't wait to see what kind of mess I have to clean up after having a 3-day weekend off. I imagine that nothing is ordered for Monday that we ran out of, and somehow the lids and vials are not filled either. As an aspiring Nostradamus, these are my predictions.

--Fries With That

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Friday haps

Today was an odd day in our pharmacy. Usually we're not very busy on Fridays, but we were jumping all day. We also had to deal with a weird number of people that were upset about various things. Like a girl, first thing, that asked me where our urine cleansing systems were, and when I said we didn't have anything like that, got our store manager, who promptly sent her to the Ex-Lax. Good luck, loser.
The stupid of the day went to a reverend that denied picking up his Viagra script and yelled that we were keeping from his duties. What kind of church he runs, I don't want to know. (The pharmacist found his signature on the pick up log within 5 minutes. Bwah!)
Also, last week, we filled a Suboxone script for a woman that elected to stare at me type the script instead of using our handy waiting area. While waiting, her and her boyfriend were browing our selection of pill cases, cutters and the like. Boyfriend spots a pill crusher. "Hey," he says, "that's when you crush Oxys!" Dumm-y, all the way. I told my pharmacist after they left and she just shook her head. What can you do, really?

Friday, February 19, 2010

What's That Smell?

The world is full of odoriferous emanations. Not all of them are pleasant but hey, how else are you gonna find a meth lab or a body dump? I was consulted by a walk-in about her friend's wound that she was too embarrassed to come in and ask about.

I LOVE wound inquiries because many times they have a good story attached. Any time I get a patient in from the ER with a bandaged finger, hand or arm I will ask them "Did you try to cut it off or just break it?" Many times I will get a laugh and a story because they are already full of pain killers and need a little something to forget about the sh*t sandwich life has given them to eat today.

So her friend had a boil under her breast that popped. So she just slapped a Band-Aid over it and went about her life. Several days later it is a big stinky hole and she still just keeps it covered with a Band-Aid because she is too embarrassed to ask a medical professional about it.

This leads me to think to myself, "Self? What holes on the human body normally stink?"

The nasal openings don't stink unless there is an infection in them.

The mouth stinks when you haven't brushed in a while because it is a cesspool of bacterial activity.

Skin pores don't normally stink unless you sweat a lot and/or don't bathe on a regular basis.

The anal opening will smell a little like poop no matter what you do because it is a sewer opening.

The vagina under normal operating conditions is pretty much odorless unless Aunt Flo is visiting or you have a swarm of yeast or bacteria hijacking your pleasure pool.

The urethra will generally have a pee smell but will smell worse when infection in the urinary tract is present or you eat asparagus.

So the prevailing answer is infection! DING DING DING, WE HAVE A WINNER!!! Bacteria find our subdermal soft tissue delicious! We are the walking talking microbial equivalent of a Las Vegas buffet: open 24/7 and a nice comfortably warm place that tempts you to stay f-o-r-e-v-e-r.

So I tell her to relay this very important message to her friend: Clean the stinky hole out with hydrogen peroxide, cover with Band-Aid and call her primary care physician as soon as the office opens in the morning or go to urgent care to get some oral antibiotics. She is well beyond the point where Neosporin and a Band-Aid will fix it. It will get much much worse if not treated now.

This also leads me to wonder how people can let something fester like that and not even think about seeing a medical provider. Hey Captain Obvious, it is getting bigger and it stinks. Get some antibiotics, for f*ck's sake!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Spring Fun

Hello! This is our first post, so please excuse us if it's not as polished as some.

We're in a rural community on the edge of the plains, with a drive-thru window borrowed/stolen from Burger Doodle...that faces the wind. It's especially entertaining when (like today) the North wind sweeps down with snow, coating everything-money, prescriptions, and one side of our faces-with slushy white stuff. The wind/rain/snow also brings out the secret chatty side of folks, who seem to love watching our teeth chatter and noses turn blue while asking question after question.

Just today, we got a classic phone call, a gentleman looking for syringes. "What size?" was met with an, "I don't know, 23?" for what volume..."the usual?" and the kicker question, "What are you using them for?" (Innocently meant, as we do quite a bit of veterinary work...) you guessed it! "I don't have to tell you that, do I? It's not required." Turns out, all we have are horse needles in that size. So sad.

So stay tuned for more adventures from the plains and the next chapter in the Hidden Hazards of Pharmacy series.

Burger Doodle Chicks

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Intro Post!

Hi, I'm Drive Thru Wench!
A few points about myself-
I'm a technician, have been for almost 8 years, which cracks me up. I cruised into the store that I work at one day, looking for a part time gig that was close to my house, and now I'm our head tech. Turns out I'm a pharmacy geek and my only regret is that I discovered this at 22 and not in school, where I could have actually went to pharmacy school. I work for a big corporate pharmacy, which has good and bad points (it's so great never having to figure reimbursements or AWP, my nifty system does that for me, but it's bad having boss upon boss upon boss). We're considered a bad store, because of our depressed, mostly ethnic neighborhood and because we're the Medicaid store. I happen to love our store and our pharmacy team rocks! Still, we have our share of crackheads. Did I mention I hate crackheads? Because I do, a lot. I'm sure you're familiar with the excuses, and the "I need one pack of 1 cc syringes, for my grandma" while visibly twitching. Oh man do I hate the crackheads!
So, long story short, tech, ranty, hates crackheads. I will have plenty of stories to share, believe me.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Hay everyone out there!

You'll have to be patient with me - I've never used Blogger software before, although I assume I can figger it out.

Before I start making posts with the meat and potatoes of my pharmacy-related posts, I thought I'd do a little bit of introducing myself. I'm a (mostly) male, twenty-something pharmacy tech for a chain pharmacy, who's a little bitter about not getting into pharmacy school. (Long story there, I'll apply again next year, no big deal).

Most of the things I complain about are completely minor things, like the lack of lemonade in our house tonight to mix with my sweet tea vodka. I'm good at improvising though, like my use of ice instead. I call it problem-solving.

I work in a store where, for some reason, we only need two full-time pharmacists, one part-timer, and then a couple of floaters a week, at least. I shouldn't bitch, we have (not counting lunches) a full 7 hours of pharmacist overlap. It keeps things new and interesting as far as relationships with pharmacists go - I've always been interested in the dynamic between techs and pharmacists that develops over time, I'll have to add that to the list of topics to cheat an entire post out of later.

Anyway, I thought I'd keep things lighthearted and friendly for my first post - we'll see how things progress from there. Expect lots of parentheses, and the occasional list.


(does Blogger sign my posts automatically for me?)

(It turns out that it does not.)

--Fries with That

Monday, February 15, 2010

Sugestions For Blogger Name Variations

I have a small list of things that could be used or abused as blogger names or variations thereof:

$5 Footlong (I think we may already have that one covered by a tech)
Double Meat
Cold Cut Combo
Kentucky Fried
Big Box
Spicy Snack Box (gonorrhea?)
Chicken & Biscuit
Cole Slaw
Hush Puppy
The King (might have to fight Elvis's ghost for that one)
Whopper Jr.
Chicken Sticks
Cinnamon Cluster (sounds like a disease not a dessert)
Want Fries With That?
Eat More Cows
With Cheese
Fudge Nut Brownie (sounds like something from a porn, like a Hot Carl)
Honey Mustard
Triple Stack
Waffle Fry
Spicy Nuggets (isn't that what happens with jock itch?)
Sourdough Jack
Boneless Wings
Home Style Chicken
Fish N Chips
Shrimp Scampi (another name for body lice)
Frosty-cino (gotta have a gangsta')
Run For The Border
Outside The Bun
Fourth Meal
Gordita Supreme
Pintos N Cheese
Fiesta Platter (sounds fun)

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Jesus LOVES you! Everyone else thinks you are an asshole

I love that saying. I will never, ever get tired of saying that in my head when a customer is acting like a brat, a nurse can't get her/his shit together to call in an a-mo-cee-leen (yeah-that happened today) prescription, Dr. DB (not to be confused with the awesome Dr. Grumpy) is soooo put out for having to call in a script at 8 PM on a Friday night and the junkie with 650 pennies starts pouting b/c cannot get a bag of needles for "granny" b/c we only sell them by the box. Yes Jesus-you are so right!!



Fan Mail!!

This email is from Mc Fury! How cute is that name!!

I wish you were my personal pharmacists!

Good Morning Fast Food Pharmacists!

I have been a tech (CPhT) for 3 years now in Florida Keys and now Virginia. My current store has some of the craziest customers I have ever encountered in retail pharmacy. For example, Wednesday an elderly man comes to the pick up counter with a Santa hat on, I ask him if he needs assistance only to have him open his cigarette pack and dump a "found" baggie of marijuana on the counter. He walks away like nothing was odd about this encounter. It is in our lost and found, you know, just in case.

Mc Furry. (kind of like Mc Flurry, but with more anger)

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Recruiting FFP bloggers

Send us an email as to why you want to be a writer for our blog. You must pick a name that is synonymous with fast food restaurants. Also, for Christ' sake, be a pharmacist or a tech. I don't want druggies posting their rants on here. That is what hate mail is for.



OMG hilarious!!

I like my NP at Kaiser. She is very smart and kind but when pressured for answers about some items, she drew a blank. I guess it happens to the best of us. :)



Yeah for us! We now have 100 followers! Thanks for spreading the love, folks. We love you too! Especially Big N' Tasty who keeps this blog alive.


Little job satisfaction

Sorry I've been absent. Big N'Tasty and the new bloggers do an excellent job at keeping you all amused and informed. I am completely disenchanted with my job at the moment. Why do you ask? Oh let me start with how pharmacists are rarely respected in the retail field. Physicians (not Dr. Grumpy obviously), nurses, PA's, NP's, midwives, housewives, stay at home dads, blah are just real assholes lately. Sorry you have a freaking chip on your shoulder but why are you taking it out on me? I have enough shit to deal with when it comes to insurance issues, technician attitude depending on the day and front of the store managers coming back with pissy attitudes about random crap. We hardly ever hear a "thanks" when we call MD's office to correct errors, which in some case are life saving. All the customers bitch about is copays. I am NOT your insurance agent! Figure it out! So sick of Medicaid patients as well. STFU! You are getting a $600 med for $1 lousy freaking dollar! Go put the twinkies back and buy your med!! OK off to a black and tan...

I can't wait for my next vacation. Sigh..

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Love At First Sight

Bayer, I was lovestruck with this new glucometer. Small, easy to use, and for the tech savvy diabetic a dream come true.

Yes kids, this glucometer is also a USB drive that stores all of your testing data and comes with software that charts your data so you get a visual representation of your glucose control. You can also print out the readings and charts to take with you for doctor office visits.

I don't know about you but I prefer to see a picture rather than just a bunch of numbers on a page. For many, visual references give an easier interpretation of data points. It is like giving a patient that "Aha!" moment so they better understand what is going on inside their body.

It would make a great gift...hint hint...

Enjoy the Valentine's season and remember if you have to have chocolate go for the sugar free!

Monday, February 1, 2010

Zoom Zoom!

This year I decided to do small things to make my appearance better. The first item on the list was a new hair color that my hairdresser friend will hate. I am sure he will chastise me then dye it a different color when I move closer and am able to see him more than once a year.

The next item on the list was to work out on a regular basis instead of sporadically. I have been recording shows off Fit TV at random so I have a different 20-30 minute workout each time. One show that recorded was Shimmy. For the unanointed, Shimmy is a belly dance workout that starts out all innocent then gets a little weird. It morphs into a 1980's music video minus the Whitesnake. Picture girls in belly dance outfits in industrial backdrops like a utilitarian hallway with flashing overhead lights, a coal-burning plant at night so you can see the flames, or a street with fires burning in barrels with the girls shimmying around them while the voice over tells you which body part should be shimmying.

The first time I chanced upon Shimmy I laughed to the brink of urinary sphincter failure. You can't write that sh*t but workout comedy happens. It's like watching the train wreck that is 80's jazzercise complete with bodysuits, tights, and leg warmers or Sweatin' to the Oldies with Richard Simmons and a bunch of crazy fat people in busted clothing.

The next thing I did was Zoom! tooth bleaching. I am impatient with Crest Whitestrips and the many other OTC variations. I didn't want to wait several weeks for great results, I wanted results now.

The Zoom! process is not as glamorous as it seems on TV. The first step is to put a big plastic lip spreader in so there is no skin blocking your teeth. Then next step is to put a protective sealant on the gums so the bleach does not fry them like bacon. Then gauze is packed in the cheeks to protect them from bleach. After everything was put in place I felt like the cenobite from Hellraiser with the lips peeled back that chattered his teeth. All I needed was a skull cap and a leather dress then I would be "Ready for my close up, Mr. De Mill!"

The bleach was applied and I was hooked up to the special light with protective eye wear and my iPod buzzing. The bleaching itself is done in 15 minute stretches with a wipe off and reapplication of bleach between each stretch. The process is tedious, all of my bleached teeth hurt by the end, and I had a 3 hour road trip afterwards to visit friends at the beach on Florida's west coast. Good times!

I had a sensitivity gel to apply with custom trays from a tooth impression we did when I had the consult. I now have an exact replica of my teeth. It makes me feel like the Tooth Fairy in Red Dragon only I don't plan on using them as dentures. Maybe I will display them in a jar of white pebbles so that it looks like an elderly person's floating dentures. An interior decorator's dream!

The results of Zoom! are phenomenal. I was amazed at the degree of whiteness achieved from an hour of torture. As long as I take care of my teeth and do a touch up with my trays every once in a while my teeth will stay freakishly glow-in-the-blacklight celebrity white. Mission accomplished!