I found a lump.
Last week in Luang Prabang I found a large, tender lump in one of my breasts. I was more than a little freaked out then remembered that other women in my family have breast cysts and hoped for the same diagnosis.
I would have liked to stay in Laos an additional week, to use the remaining days on my visa, but Laos is seriously lacking in the health care department and I had already put off visiting the doctor for a week. So we headed back to Chiang Mai to see the doctor and much to my relief, by the time we made it back to Chiang Mai (a 3 day trip including 3 slow boats, 2 tuk tuks, 2 local buses, 1 shuttle bus, 1 songthaew, and 1 motorbike), the swelling had gone down considerably, yet the lump remained.
I used the Chiang Mai Expat forums to find a doctor and this morning I went to see Dr Morgan at the Health Care Medical Clinic. It was strikingly similar to seeing the doctor in California in part because I chose a modern clinic where the doctor speaks excellent English.
What sets it apart from a doctors office in California is that I went to the clinic, without making an appointment, and after about a 15 minute wait I was already in the exam room with Dr. Morgan. That and the consultation cost me just $12.
Feeling relieved: it appears to be a cyst. Now off to see if my travelers insurance cover will this visit.