Monday, October 17, 2011

Correlation vs. Causality

Am I failing as a "scientist"? I had looked at the correlating evidence, and drew a conclusion that might be entirely wrong. Fever. Achiness. Loss in appetite. Must be flu. Increased pressure in the sack by the surgical area must be due to the high fever. Take Tylenol, reduce fever, feel better. The pressure of the swelling definitely seems to be correlated with the temperature of the fever. Sounds like a good theory.

Until I spoke with Dr. B last night. He's much more concerned with the swelling in the surgical area, and thinks that could be infected, causing the high fevers. When he first mentioned it, it made no sense. Then I let the remainder of my brain think a little bit. Flu? With no coughing? No stuffy nose? And after Tylenol I feel totally fine? Rut roh.

So I'm headed back today to talk to Berger's nurse assistant, and if she tells me he's out and I have to wait until he's around, I'm headed to the ER. A swelling near the brain is not a good thing...even if it is caused by the flu.