Snake Oil

January 14, 2020


I had the follow-up appointment for my dry eyes today. I got there in plenty of time, and even had a few minutes to run to the nearby grocery store for some dinner and fish oil. (More about that later.) I checked in on time and only had to wait around 15 minutes or so. Some people might be annoyed, but it was blissfully quiet and nobody was tattling, so I loved it.

The nurse did some little tests and then asked how I was doing with the warm compresses, increased water intake and fish oil. (That’s what they instructed me to do.) I told her, “This is going to be like when people lie to their dentist about flossing.” I was truthful, though, and said while I was doing my best, I wasn’t great about doing it every day. The past two weeks have been my most faithful.

Dr. Bateman came in and checked my eyes. One is still the same, but the other is doing better. Hooray for small victories! I told him how I couldn’t find the ‘good’ fish oil he recommended. (Side note: Fish oil capsules are made in different ways. If they’ve been processed with ethyl-blah-blah-blah, your body doesn’t recognize them as a ‘food’, unlike the ‘good’ pills, which have been blah-blah-blah processed.) He told me that you can only get the ‘good’ capsules through the company that provides them. I could get a bottle at the clinic and then a representative will contact me to see about setting up an annual subscription. Sure, whatever. I took the bottle and headed to the checkout.

The bottle has 270 capsules. Woo-hoo! So many! “That’s a three-month supply,” Dr. Batemen told me. Dang. Three pills a day?

The receptionist told me the cost. “A hundred and seventy-three dollars.” What the what?!?!?! A HUNDRED AND SEVENTY-THREE DOLLARS. I was floored, but it was too late to throw the bottle across the room, so I paid them for their snake oil.

I will make this bottle last 270 days. I will supplement with the non-properly-processed-non-overpriced fish oil capsules from the grocery store and we’ll just see how my eyes do next time.


About Lauren

Lauren Sommerer is a preschool teacher who likes to build prototypes, grow cats, cook things once, save money, reduce, reuse and recycle.

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2 Responses to “Snake Oil”

  1. Brad Said on:

    Dang it. I always want to trust medical people and do what they say, but when something like this happens, it seems really suspicious. It seems really weird that in all of the world, only one company makes fish oil like that.


  2. Kristi Said on:

    You need to get your fish oil from Green Pasture. They’re a Nebraska family, and I know them!!! Highly reputable and rave reviews from all over the USA. I’ve used their products before and am impressed with the quality.



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