Nanjing Update – Seeing a Chinese Doctor

Good Morning!

As most of you know, we are back in China after our European getaway! I was gone for about a month visiting friends and family before meeting Taylor in Zurich. When I left China back in August, I had no idea how much traveling I’d be doing, when I’d be back, or that I’d literally fly around the world in a month! I feel so blessed to do what I love! Returning to Nanjing was a whole lot easier this time. I wish I would’ve known back in June that I’d be leaving for month in August. It would’ve made my transition way easier. Sigh. I really should trust that everything will work out. 🙂


Our flight landed in Nanjing bright and early and we returned to our normal routine right away!

We started apartment hunting again (watch our Apartment Tour here) and we were welcomed back by our friends. We’re so lucky to have friends here who make living in China easier.


A few days after we returned to China, my right ear started feeling achy and congested. sigh. I have suffered from swimmers ear and overall ear problems my whole life, but haven’t had any infections in quite a while. As you can imagine, I was really irritated! I’m not one to see a doctor right away. I’d much rather let my body try and fight it as much as it can before I start antibiotics or seeing a professional. I was drinking lots of water and letting it drain as much as possible. When it still wasn’t getting better, I went to the pharmacy and picked up some over the counter ear drops. Now, I’ve been taking ear drops for a really long time and these drops hurt so extremely bad that I knew something was wrong. Ear drops are supposed to cause you discomfort, but these were unbearable.


So we went to see a Chinese doctor. I really really didn’t want to do this. I don’t do well when visiting American hospitals, so I didn’t know what I’d see in China. Taylor did some research with our translator Jake before picking which hospital to visit, and this one was one of the nicer options. We also took Jake along with us so he could translate for us.


When you live in a city with millions of people, seeing a doctor can be chaotic. We paid 10 RMB to see the doctor upon arrival and were directed to the ears, nose, and throat room. Here, we waited maybe 30 minutes before my name appeared on the board that stated which doctor I needed to see. Once I found the doctor, I had to wait in line at his station to be seen.


There’s nothing like waiting in a room with 30 other people who have ear, nose, and throat problems…


HIPPA is not a thing here in China!


Me looking at Taylor because I didn’t like the long metal object he was about to stick in my already achy ear.

The doctor examined my ear in front of everybody else in the room, which was awkward since I was the only American there and of course they were already staring at me. He told me that my ear was in fact infected, but my ear drum also had a hole in it (insert eye roll here). We’re not sure when it happened, but because my ear got infected, this is when my body decided to let me know that I had bigger issues. Side note: this happened to me years ago, so rupturing again is common.


Once we were done seeing him, we walked downstairs and picked up my prescription on the spot. The whole experience cost me a total of 10 US dollars (without insurance), which is unbelievable. We were there for about an hour, saw a doctor, and picked up a prescription within an hour. This is unheard of in America!! Now, there was no privacy and it wasn’t warm and fuzzy, but you win some you lose some. I’m glad I went and overcame that fear, but I’m not eager to return. I do have to have the hole repaired through surgery, but I’m going to hold off until I return to the States for the holidays! I’m not quite ready to be put under anesthetics in China yet! 🙂



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