You Get What You Pay For: Ear Infection Edition

A couple weeks ago, an ineffectively treated ear infection resulted in a ruptured ear drum. And I was reminded that you get what you pay for.

I've been sick for the better part of the month of May. I've had times when I've started feeling better, only to fall back into misery. But most of my issues this month have revolved around an ear infection.

When I first went to the doctor for this difficulty, I had to go to the InstaCare clinic. This was a bit of a pain, because it was more expensive than seeing my own health care provider. However, I really, really wanted to get in that day, so I paid a higher co-pay and paid for the convenience. (I was also glad that I paid for a good health insurance policy, good just about anywhere.)

Where things went a little screwy was when the doctor (who was probably a couple years younger than me) prescribed augmentin. Here's the problem with augmentin. It's just fancied up amoxicillin. As a child, amoxicillin never worked for me. But the doctor insisted that the augmentin was better, and should work out, even so. After all,?it's what they prescribe for ear infections.

It didn't work effectively.

Augmentin

Sticking to Your Individual Financial Path

One of the reasons that augmentin is so popular is that it works for most people, and it is fairly cheap.

Unfortunately,?what works for others might not work for you. Augmentin might be a good general antibiotic for ear infections, but it doesn't mean it's right for everyone. What's right for one person's finances might not be right for another's. Likewise, the financial path most people take might not be the right one for you.

The so-called American Dream makes a lot of people happy. However, it's not for everyone, no matter how many people are content with it. Just because a lot of people are doing something with their finances, and making certain spending choices, it doesn't mean that you should go along with it, if it isn't right for you.

I was afraid to rock the boat with Mr. Doctor Man because he's the professional. And while there's something to be said for expertise, at the same time there is also something to be said for your own experience, and certain knowledge of what works for you. You shouldn't keep up with the Joneses just to fit in, and if you know a certain financial lifestyle doesn't work for you, don't apologize for taking another path.

I wish I'd been more forceful about the antibiotic. I probably wouldn't have ended up with an exploded ear drum.

You Get What You Pay For

The next part of this equation is that you get what you pay for. After a few days, with my ear still hurting (and at some point my ear drum rupturing), I asked my mom what they used to give me instead of?amoxicillin. She said it was a great drug called seclor. But she didn't think they made it anymore. I figured that there must be some next generation version of it, so armed with a little more knowledge, I went back to the doctor.

This time, though, I went to my regular health care provider, even though I had to wait a day to get in. If you're going to get professional help with your finances, you might as well get with someone who knows you. I decided I wanted to get professional help from someone who had my records and my history, and would probably listen to my concerns because they understand my situation. This is the case with financial help as well. It's good to have someone who understands your individual finances and history.

This doctor was older, and he had heard of seclor. But my mom was right; they don't make it anymore. The upgraded version of that antibiotic is cefuroxime, and it costs more than twice as much as augmentin.

you get what you pay for

This time, the result was what I'd hoped for. I paid extra, but I also had faster, better results. Sometimes it's worth it to pay more.

You really do get what you pay for sometimes. Before you go the absolute cheapest route, stop and think about the situation. Perhaps you will be better off doing something different to everyone else, and then paying a little extra to make it happen.

What do you think? Was there a time that it really hit home that you get what you pay for?

6 thoughts on “You Get What You Pay For: Ear Infection Edition”

  1. Lance Cothern

    We had the same revelation with our dog’s allergies. We took her in and the vet gave her a quick, cheaper fix, but her allergies just ended up coming back a few weeks later. After we realize that, we paid for the allergy testing and allergy shots, which were much more expensive but work pretty effectively in controlling her allergies! It is worth the money for her not to suffer 🙂

    1. Miranda Marquit

      It really is amazing the difference a little extra money can make. It’s too bad that it has to apply to healthcare, though 🙁 Not everyone can afford to pay for this stuff.

  2. Hannah @ Wise Dollar

    My daughter had ear infection. We already visited the doctor and applied any medicine he prescribed but nothing happened instead it’s getting worse. 🙁

    1. Miranda Marquit

      Ask for a different antibiotic. Or you might need tubes. My son basically had an ear infection for two months straight when he was younger, with nothing working. They put in tubes, and it worked wonders. After a year or so, they fell out. Consult with a medical professional, particularly an ENT, to get an idea of what might work better.

  3. A few years ago I had a raging sinus infection, and I went to an InstaCare where the doctor, who was barely older than I was and working on his residency, prescribed me an antibiotic in the same family as the one I’m allergic to (even though I’d told him what I was allergic to). Unfortunately, I didn’t know it was in the same family. Thankfully, the pharmacist caught it. I never went back there again.

    1. Miranda Marquit

      Ick! That’s awful. And there really is something to be said for a doctor who isn’t so fresh-faced. You want that experience when it comes to your health.

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