I have had a cough since the beginning of September, my GP gave me an inhaler but it did not really do anything for me.

Niamh (white) and Richard (tabby). Photo: © 2014 John Carchrie Campbell
Niamh (white) and Richard (tabby). Photo: © 2014 John Carchrie Campbell

The only relief I really got was after being round the camp fire with my Scouting friends at Gilwell Reunion in London. Progressively it has got worse, and I have been sleeping very badly quite often in the living room to let Andrew sleep himself. Fortunately I have been kept company at night by our cats, Scholastica, Niamh, and Richard (pictured right when very small) and also Wee Gee or others of his mates.

So this morning, after a couple of hours’ kip and after prompting from Andrew I managed to ring my GP and got an appointment for twenty minutes after I called. When I lived in the UK, I don’t remember

  • getting through on the phone to the practice on the first call without being in a queue for ages;
  • getting a same day appointment very easily

So, I got dressed, went to the cash machine, and then went round to the GP. Fortunately the surgery is only about five minutes’ walk from the house.

There was a bit of a wait in the waiting room, but that is normal in any practice, and then I was seen.

My GP prescribed both antibiotics and steroids. She also made sure that I knew to contact the surgery again if it does not get better. I think she may want another chest X-ray done.

Meds to take

The prescription this time is not quite as simple as past prescriptions, but what I have been given is:

  • 21 Germentin 500mg/125mg (
    Take one three times daily for seven days (so far so good)
  • 22 Deltacortril Ent 5mg Gast
    Take six today, five tomorrow, then four, three, two, one, and one… (told you it was a bit complicated)

A friend had similar problems earlier in the autumn, and he suggested that I take them two hours before bedtime. Sadly there was no patient information leaflet with them, but I have found one online (An tÚdarás Rialála Táirgí Sláinte). So I now know to take them after a meal… fortunately Andrew has just returned from a trip to the local Tesco to get chicken goujons and mashed potato.

Watch this space for further updates.

Useful websites

If you live in the European Union, and want to find out more about medicines, I found a useful website, that of the European Medicines Agency (EMA). Lots of information is available there, so will be exploring myself.


In Ireland, An tÚdarás Rialála Táirgí Sláinte (Health Products Regulatory Authority) is also useful.