June 3rd, 2008


Frustrated with the medical community

Yesterday I tried to make an appointment with my doctor, but she was totally booked and couldn't fit me in. The nurse at the phone insisted I needed to go to the emergency room and not wait till the next day for an appointment.

After a few hours of working, notifying work, and getting cleaned up, I had Warren drive me in Just In Case I wouldn't be able to drive home (this turned out to be a very smart idea). I arrived at El Camino Hospital and was checked in at 3:34pm. I wasn't taken to the "fast track" area till over an hour later.

Once put in a "seat" (hospital bed set up to look like a recliner - rather uncomfortable), the lab tech drew blood, a nurse gave me a "grasshopper" consisting of lidocaine, mylanta, and belladonna and then asked for a urine sample. Even after the "drink" I still had burning in my stomach. I was starving, but they wouldn't let me eat anything. When they brought a pill, they gave me barely enough water to get it in. The "highlight" of my time in ER was when I allowed a student nurse to do her first-ever IV insertion into my left arm. That was the only "entertainment" I had.

After the IV was inserted I was injected with some kind of narcotic pain killer and an anti-nausea drug for the nausea the pain killer was expected to cause. The two made me very woozy and drowsy, but the burning and pain didn't go away. A few hours later they gave me a Pepcid and some more painkiller. The pain and most of the burning finally went away. They also did two more blood draws to determine I didn't have a heart attack.

I was finally released at 1am. When I went to stand up I had to lie back down because I got very dizzy. An EMT came by and took my blood pressure lying down, sitting, and standing. We both noticed the top number dropped by at least ten points going from lying to sitting and from sitting to standing. He went off, and I was told my ride was here, so I left, prescriptions in tow. We then went to the 24-hour Walgreen's in town to get them filled, then to Carrow's so I could finally have some food (I hadn't eaten all day!!!). In the middle of eating I had to get up and run to the bathroom because I started projectile vomiting. Being the anal-retentive person I am, I managed to hold it till I got to the bathroom, then aimed it directly into the toilet. Still, it was gross. I managed to hold down the rest of the meal, but I haven't eaten today because I'm afraid I'd puke it up.

The worst part? My doctor has no openings till the 11th, my gastroenterologist is out of town till the 16th, I still don't have a diagnosis, and I actually feel worse today than I did yesterday.
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