< > Alchemy for Dummies 2: RANT Against Doctors

Thursday, July 22, 2010

RANT Against Doctors

Tuesday I had an appointment with the vascular clinic at the VA re; my right leg and the angioplasty done at the end of May. At that time they sai the had been unable to clear all of the blockage but that they had some alternatives they wanted to talk about. They then did as they often do, made appointments for me without regards to my schedule at all. As I was still working for the census, I cancelled them and said I'd reschedule. I knew I had an appointment with my nurse practitioner last week and wanted to talk it over with her first. Meanwhile for the last month or so I'd become increasingly short of breath even doing basic things like going upstairs. They had put me on metropolol to reduce my pulse, but it hadn't done so. Vascular called back and we set up an appointment for the 20th.
The car broke down a couple of weeks back and I took the bus to the VA hospital, a two but trip and then a walk that usually takes me about 20 min. When I saw my nurse, I told her about being increasingly SOB. She had some bloodwork drawn. She said she could not see my appt with vascular in her computer.
Later in the week vascular called and confirmed it was for the 20th at 0930.
On Tuesday I left but missed a bus I needed and so I was late for the second bus, getting on it at about 0930. I did call the office and say I'd be late and they said come on in. When I got off the bus it took me over 40 min to walk to the VA. I got there a little after 1015 and was told I'd bee seen when something opened up. I was ok with that. A little after 11 or so I was seen and told that they did not plan on doing anything else about my leg as I had no symptoms and had good collateral circulation around the narrowed artery.
But while taking my pulse the nurse found it was fast, about 90-100, as it usually is but taht it was irregular. So I was sent to ER for an EKG. Now Iwas not happy. I had planned on running some very important errands on the way home and stoppin for lunch and maybe a movie. I did not want waste time in ER. But they took me in fairly qick and did an EKG. A few minutes they came back and did a scond, longer "rhythm strip" EKG. After quite a while I was visited by different docs. One said they might keep me or they might send me come on warfarin and bring me back as an outpatient for cardioversion, as I was back in atrial flutter/fibrillation. They were not putting too fine a point on it. The second said I was being admitted as it made more sense to keep me for a few days, get me on anticoagulants and zap me sooner rather than later since I was there. Needless to say I was not happy, and my blood sugar was down from not eating so far. I was told about 1330 or so and when I tried to call Betsy to tell her found both my phones had died.
I got to the floor abou 1600, and was checked in about 30 or so min later. I finally saw a doctor around 1800 or so and she said I would be started on some IV's for dehydration, given a heparin drip (anti coag) and be NPO after 2400 for procedures the next day. She did order a diet for me. I ate at about 1900 and had a snack about 2230 since I could have nothing later. I was given a pair of way too small pj's. Asked for anothe pair but never got 'em.
They did get a CPAP for me, but screwed that order up, having the respiratory people told to put me on oxygen 2L/min. When he arrived and as he was setting up he asked about what oxy level I was on at home, and pointed out I wasn't. So he didn't connect the ox but did check back later to see that the CPAP was working and my oxy level was good. It was. At 0400 they woke me to draw blood. As I'd slept from about 2300 I did not get back to sleep.

Of course I could have no breakfast, but as I did not get my diabetic meds in the morning, nor had I the night before, I was not too hungry. I was given a clean towel and pj's and asked for a larger set, as the ones given were also too small. I was told the cardiology team would be in to see me about 0900. I was given anew set of pj's and was going to put them on after I'd washed up. About 0900 a woman form the echo cardiogram unit came toi get me and asked if I could walk as she wanted me to come down for a cardiogram. I said yes but I'd need a moment to change pj's. She said ok but hurry and she would wait at the desk. Just as i went to change a team of docs came in to see my roommate, who was also in for a heart problem. I figured Agggh Penfold just erased 3 or 4 paragraphs.
To be continued.......


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