Every Friday Michelle Polacinski, a Floxie as well as the Director and Producer of ‘Floxed,’ sends out a newsletter to those who have subscribed to the ‘Floxed’ newsletter. The Floxed Friday updates are always interesting and thoughtful, and Michelle has given me permission to share them here.
If you would like to receive the Floxed Friday updates directly from Michelle, please subscribe to the Floxed Documentary email list. You can subscribe through THIS LINK. Subscribing also helps Michelle to gain funding for the Floxed Documentary, and she doesn’t send out spam.
The following was written by Michelle:
I’m writing this next to a large window and a view of falling snowflakes, gently floating down to the ground below, causing accidents and exciting skiers everywhere.
Skiing is a big, big deal for me. I learned when I was 4 years old in the middle of the woods in Upstate New York. My dad, a trophy-winning freestyle skier, known for his backflips and helicopters, gave me a pair of used thrift store Rossignols with the chickens at the top and gave me poles meant for a much taller child as we hopped over sticks and fallen trees together.
After racing on a team in high school and teaching skiing for 6 seasons, it’s easy to see that I’m enamored with the sport.
Skiing was and still is one of my favorite activities. When I was floxed, I couldn’t walk or hike for awhile. I was one of those floxies who crawled to the bathroom and lost 20 pounds in merely weeks.
I was no professional athlete floxie, but come winter, I was terrified that I would never ski again.
I was one of the lucky ones. While many floxies remain forever disabled, forever unable to walk again or run again, I got better and could ski again. To be fair, skiing is not a tendon-heavy sport, so it was easier to get back into it than, say, rock climbing or weight lifting or running or whatever other people do to stay fit.
I’m not bragging about it at all, but I was able to go backcountry skiing a couple days ago after we got a huge snowstorm and discussed my *former* disability with another skier I met there.
“Why don’t you sue?”
He actually didn’t ask me that question, but most people do when I talk about getting floxed. The answer is a complex one.
Many have tried and many have failed to win, including successful lawyers with floxed loved ones or doctors who have been floxed themselves. Lawsuits, including class action ones, have come and gone since the late 70’s, but fluoroquinolone antibiotics are still on the market because “there is enough warning for patients,” and “look at all those black box warnings!”
We disagree. We think that there needs to be much more education about Fluoroquinolone Toxicity, for medical professionals especially, but also better informed consent for patients.
It’s easy to blame the doctor who prescribed the antibiotic, but the fact of the matter is that many doctors are not adequately warned of the risks themselves. Doctors, like Mark Ghalili, DO, have been floxed. If that’s not an example that they are not properly informed, I don’t know what is. Today, Fluoroquinolone Toxicity is regularly taught in medical schools all over the USA, but I want it to be a mandatory lesson.
It’s regular practice for pharmacy technicians to remove the lists of warnings and pamphlets about the drug in order for it to be “easier” for patients, or so they say.
Who is to blame, really? Is it the drug itself? The drug had no intention. It’s an object, a creation. Is it pharmaceutical companies? Pharmacists? Investors?
Many floxies choose to blame themselves. “I shouldn’t have taken that drug,” they lament. “It probably happened because I’m too old, I was too sick, I took ibuprofen for a headache, I didn’t read the pamphlet, I have the MTHFR gene, I didn’t Google it, etc. etc. etc.”
It’s easy to blame the victim, even when the victim is never at fault . . . so who is to blame?
Instead of focusing on the blame, I’m focusing on solutions. Our team is focusing on how we can end this floxie epidemic once-and-for-all, with adequate educational campaigns and, hopefully, a huge, awesome documentary. Let us know if you want to help with the campaign and we’ll add you to a list for when the time comes.
Look out for YET ANOTHER podcast (originally recorded in June, I think!) coming out next week. We talk about how I became a filmmaker and get a little more into what it’s like to work in the film industry.
Have a great weekend and thank you for your continued support!
Floxie, Director, and Producer of ‘Floxed’