Archives for September 20, 2004

Moms against Meth – Doctor starts ‘Mothers Against Meth’

CHATTANOOGA, Tennessee (AP) — Dr. Mary Holley has witnessed the ravages of methamphetamine.

As an obstetrician in Albertville, Alabama, she estimates about 10 percent of her pregnant patients are addicted.

One was “high as a kite. Comes in dilated 9 centimeters. She is pushing out her baby. I am trying to get the clothes off this woman so I can deliver this baby and a gun falls out of her bra,” Holley said.

But the methamphetamine epidemic in Appalachia has now become a personal crusade for Holley: Four years ago, her brother Jim shot and killed himself after a struggle with meth addiction.

“After he died, I started looking into it as a physician, as a scientist,” Holley wrote on her Web site. “What is this drug that destroyed his life in just two years?”

A photo of her brother appears on the Web site for Mothers Against Methamphetamine, or MAMa, a Christian ministry that Holley founded last year to fight the drug.

For the record, I’m against meth use. I’m more and more a conservative (but real world libertarian) as I age, but meth will always stay on my list of “for your own good” drugs.

As an EM resident I saw a lifetime of methed out patients. Gooned out, hypertensive, unable to focus, injured-but-unable-to-feel gooned out. While living in Fresno I got the crap scared out of me by a passenger in a car who was screaming at me. Because I was there, I guess. After another year I realized he was high on meth, and I was just there.

Second only, in my ER estimation, to heroin is meth in addictive qualities. Meth mouth is diagnostic, and unmistakable, like a half-dozen skin-popping abscesses.

I hope their cause does some good, I really do.


Today was power outage day.

My entire corner of town had an interesting little penomenon: intermittent power outage. Repeatedly.

Starting early in the morning, we’d have 5-15 minutes of electrical power, followed by 20-40 minutes of no power. Then back on. Rinse, repeat.

In my home, with all the computer gear necessary to control the worlds’ satellites keep me entertained, the screeing of uninterrupted power supplies (UPS’s) was enough to wake me from the dead, every time the power went out. They’d just bleat their little sirens out and die of power loss just in time for the power to come back on and recharge them. Then, guess what? Whammo, power’s out and the scree soundtrack resumes. Not a good way to sleep.

I’m trying to sleep because working an evening shift. Evening shift means (ideally) being rested when I go to work. Not today. I went to work, but with the soothing sounds of screeing UPS’s in my ears.

Thanks, TXU. I should bill you for my time.