Off to Mexico

So, it all started with a standard STD check, when the doctor said, “How long have you had that hernia?” Never at a loss for words, I instantly shot back, “That what?” “Hernia,” he said, apparently unphased by my wit. “That’s a hernia.”

This was, you understand, two days before I left for Vegas to move my stuff.

So, anyway, here we are today, and Reesa and I are off to Mexico, the land of mescal, mariachi bands, and $3000 (as opposed to $10,000 or $15,000) hernia surgery. I should be back in a few days, if all goes well. Keep the fires burning, and say many witty things while I’m gone.

Published by

Avatar photo


Site administrative account, so probably Corwin, Felix or DD-B.

0 thoughts on “Off to Mexico”

  1. Eeek. Best of luck. I hope you get to see a little more of Mexico than the inside of an operating theater.


  2. Yikes! But I suppose it’s better to discover a hernia during an STD check than to find an STD during a hernia check…depending on the D, anyway. Best of luck, I’m sure everything will go well. Traveling for medical care is all the rage nowadays.

  3. What does one say to someone that’s found an unexpected hernia and is going to Mexico to resolve it because the US health care system is so fragged that they have to…?

    Um… good luck?

  4. Mine was $12,891.00, some 10 weeks ago (85% covered, thank goodness!). Pretty fast, simple surgery, and the scar is almost completely invisible now. I hope your surgeon is as good as mine was!

  5. They’ve just left… I’ll be sure to post updates as I have them.

    Thanks to everyone for the well wishes already posted or still to come.

  6. Good luck Steve, I had no idea it was so bad that it was going to require surgery! Hope your stay in Mexico is safe and therapeutic.

  7. Being on the inside of things occasionaly, I know the medical form they sent you was for cosmetic surgery….so as long as you wake up minus a hernia and not plus a set of breasts or a new nose I think a trip to Mexico to save that kind of cash is well worth it. Said it before you left, but here it is again…drive safe, be well, come back to us feeling better, sir. :)

  8. Yikes, that hernia’s affecting your use of homophones (unphased vs unfazed). Anyway, if it’s anything like my brother-in-law’s teeth surgery, your, uh, abdomen is gonna look great when they’re done.

  9. Well, I’ll just share the advice a co-worker once gave us regarding pain medicine and the mental fog it causes: “Be sure not to operate any heavy machinery, and this includes karaoke machines.”

    Best wishes for recovery.

  10. Well wishes for the works on your wan waif in this watery world of words, waiting, and eventual wellness.

    And yeah, what mary@3 said. :(


  11. yikes! it’s a seriously fucked up medical system when you have to leave the country to get care! get well soon.

  12. “Ack!!” is not nearly as witty a response as you solicited, I fear, nor can I possibly aspire to the grand alliteration Ojiikun managed to spout – so I’ll stick to “hope everything goes well!”

    I guess good coffee liquour doesn’t mix well with surgery, eh?

  13. Best wishes for a safe trip, an uncomplicated surgery, and a speedy recovery, Steve.

  14. I’d say, “I know how you feel,” but I don’t.
    And hopefully, I never will. Travel fast and heal safe, to paraphrase. Hurry back stitched and sound.

  15. The People for the Ethical Treatment of SKZBs (San Francisco Chapter) offer their best, brightly-polished wishes and hopes to you, Steve!

    Chris & Cat

  16. Steven Brust PJF, Why don’t you have insurance, WTF? You’re a New York Times bestselling author! Just buy some! Or are you going all Thelma and Louise for the same reason you won’t buy a real working (read: Mac or PC) computer? A socialist principle? No, don’t tell me. I don’t really want to know. I honestly do wish you mucho luck, you’re the best, but I get worried that you’re a little too impractical for your own good sometimes. Sigh. If they use you as a pinata let me know if minitature bottles of hungarian brandy and poker chips fall out to the squeeling delight of local children. Love ya man.

  17. Tom: To insure me, a healthy 31 year old female, would cost me $389 per month. And that wouldn’t cover most bills associated with major surgery, especially for a pre-existing condition. I shudder to think how much Steve’s insurance bill would have to be, to then cover his surgery…

    To insure me for a year would cost more than what Steve’s going to pay for surgery in Mexico.

    Welcome to America, give us your money!

    Oh, and, have a safe trip, may the surgeons have steady hands, and here’s hoping you heal fast, Steve!

  18. Yikes. Nothing like a hernia to help you move. Hope the surgery goes well, and the trip is safe.

    Thanks for keeping us updated, Kit.

  19. Steve, best of luck! And please write up your experience with Mexican health care.

    Tom Kater, do a little research about the number of Americans who can afford health insurance.

    rone, here’s a Mark Twain quote that Steve should always have handy: “I don’t give a damn for man that can spell a word only one way.”

  20. Aaah, Mexico. Land of cheap dentistry and surgeries. I’ll be heading there myself, for the joyous addition of multiple crowns to my teeth, since even my nominally ‘generous’ dental insurance plan still leaves me thousands of dollars ‘out of pocket’ more than the trip cost.

    Remember, tequila is the other, OTHER cheap Mexican painkiller.
    PS. Smuggle back some regular unleaded. Its far cheaper. You could even fund your trip…

  21. Re: Jennifer@21 and Will@23

    Will, about 16% of Americans are completely uninsured. I’m currently one of them, so I’m not casting aspersions there, just giving my literary hero some neighborly ball-breaking.

    Jennifer, we’re about the same age. I know that getting insured is a priority for me. Isn’t it for you?

    By the way, about 50% of Mexicans are uninsured, and of those how many do you think could afford a $3,000 procedure out of pocket? So let’s all get off the American health care sucks bandwagon, shall we? At least we have talented doctors coming to live here from all corners of the earth. Forgive me for being worried that my favorite writer is facing the (to me alone, it seems) dangerous prospect of going under the knife in a corrupt second world country not generally reputed for being a magnet for highly skilled professionals of any kind. I live in the hinterlands of Atlanta, and nearly 100% of my new neighbors are hardworking, industrious Mexicans who worked dilligently to escape that place.

    If there’s no choice, there’s no choice, but is it too late to hide Steve in my pickup truck and smuggle him to Canada instead…? I know the man’s a card player, but this sounds like real gambling to me.

  22. I spoke to them a little while ago and they were very close to El Paso at a rest stop. They should be getting into El Paso soon if they have not already. From there Steve travels to Mexico with the help of the hospital.

  23. So my favourite author who lives in Bushland has to go to a less economically developed country to fix something I would of thought to be a given service.

    And I thought my country’s health system was up the no0ah. If what I’ve seen in the media and what Steve’s adventures have anything to go by, no Sir.

    I’m a Capitalist but there are some things that free market dynamics cannot be allowed run rampant. And national health systems are one of them.

  24. Tom in 25: Well, while, yes, I would like the luxury of insurance, I can’t afford it right now. I know I could use some dental work, my hormones need to be checked for random oddness, and heart disease runs in my family. But…

    If I got the insurance that would take care of all that, and did so, and paid the co-pays and bought the prescriptions and did everything the doctors told me to do, I’d be a really healthy hobo.

    In case that went by too fast, if I had insurance I wouldn’t have food, clothes, gas for my car, electricity for my house, or any of the other random things I have budgeted for. Or, I could have all of that and no apartment.

    Instead, I have no insurance, but I do have a place to live and food to eat.

    I make $800 a month. The poverty line? She’s up there somewhere…

  25. Good luck on your surgery, Steve. Surgery sucks, but I’m glad you managed to find an affordable surgeon!

  26. Hope it went well for you. My husband is facing the same surgery, and we are also considering going to Mexico. If you had a successful and happy (I know that’s relative) experience with your Mexican physician & medical facility – could you pass along the doctor’s name, location & # please. Thanks

  27. What did you think of Dr. Natera and the Star Medica Hospital? I am planning Lap-band with him and this hospital but have not been able to find a lot of information. I heard it was hard to find research on MD’s in Mexico… What did you think about the service you received?

  28. It was outstanding. I was very impressed at all points. I saw relatively little of Dr. Natera, but his staff was wonderful, and the care was top-notch.

Leave a Reply