The big difference one little tablet can make

Many years ago, I was performing my regular daily duties as a community pharmacist. An elderly gentleman walked into the pharmacy with a bit of a limp, and made his way to the dispensary service counter. As usual, I asked him how he was and how I could help.

He stated that he had a bit of a sore knee, which was an issue for him at the time, because it meant that he couldn’t go out and play soccer with his grandchildren. I asked a few further questions, finding out that the knee problem was more than likely a slight strain; it was also his only ailment. In his mid 70s, this gentleman was a perfect picture of health! No blood pressure problems, no cholesterol problems, no heart conditions, no diabetes, nothing! This made my job fairly easy. I was able to recommend a simple over the counter anti-inflammatory for a couple of days to help get over the slight knee injury.

A couple of weeks later, the same gentleman came back into the pharmacy. He made a bee line straight for me, in order to thank me. It turned out he took the anti-inflammatory for around 5 days and his knee was back to normal. This allowed him to once again visit the grand kids and take them out for a run and a kick of the soccer ball….the smile on his face at telling me this was immense!

For this customer, a seemingly minor ailment, with a rather simple treatment option, had a massive impact on his life. With his knee injury, he was unable to head out and play a bit of sport with his grandchildren. But after just a few days of taking an anti-inflammatory, he was back to being able to run around the park with the boys!

This is a rather basic example of how health conditions can affect people and their sports; and how appropriate treatments can get them back to doing what they love. But at the same time, the simplicity of the joy of an elderly man being able to run around and kick a soccer ball with his grandchildren shows just how big an impact physical activity can have on somebody’s life.

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