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Treated like a criminal at the ER

Discussion in 'General ME/CFS Discussion' started by Vincent, May 18, 2014.

  1. Vincent

    Vincent Senior Member

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    Don't ever tell the ER you are on pain medication. I go to urgent care and explain my POTS and that's why I'm so confused right now because I literally do not have enough RBC going to my brain and why I feel better laying down. This is the third time symptoms have gotten so severe I had to seek out urgent care. Anway, this urgent care -unlike others I have been to -is unable to give IV fluids, or just wouldn't give them to me.

    I tell them I have confusion and headache when standing. Urgent says they are not equipped to handle me and charge me 35 dollars for the pleasure of sending me to the ER.

    At the ER dr says, and I quote: 'why do you think you are confused'. Oh gee, I don't know, thats like saying 'why do you think you like spaghetti', because I like spaghetti, you fucking idiot. Just because I can solve your simple arithmetic and logic questions does not mean I'm not impaired.

    Instead of just giving me an IV drip without an interrogation I had to get a drug screen, some other blood work that was never explained to me nor values given, and a brain CT. It all comes back 'normal'. Dr comes in asks if I want more IV I say 'yes, but I don't want to sit here another 2 hrs', so I get discharged. No medication to control headache, no referral given, just a one page computer print out with 'Anxiety' and 'Volume Depletion'.

    Who the fuck discharges someone from the ER with no follow up, no referral!? I just moved here two weeks ago, you need to do that for everyone you discharge especially someone like me!

    So in the future, my pain medication is my business and my business alone.
     
  2. minkeygirl

    minkeygirl Narcissism = lack of self awareness

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    Mind boggling. I guess they are used to working with the unwashed masses and are not used to someone with a brain not seeking drugs.
    No excuse. Makes you wonder.
     
  3. Vincent

    Vincent Senior Member

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    I also forgot to add this wonderful nugget. So I'm getting my IV put in my the tech and they need urine for the tests and drug screen so he says 'I'll just turn around and you pee in this, it'll save time'. Um, save time...? I was fine with that since it's another guy and hey maybe it's just really busy or whatever. Once I added it all up with subsequent events made my judgment more harsh.
     
    merylg likes this.
  4. minkeygirl

    minkeygirl Narcissism = lack of self awareness

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    I can see why it would be easier but in combination with everything else? What hospital is this?
     
  5. Sushi

    Sushi Moderator and Senior Member Albuquerque

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    @Vincent

    I'd just never go to that ER or Urgent Care again. :mad: Now they have you classified as "anxious," so you'd probably just get a repeat performance.

    Not all ERs are such dunces regarding POTS. I have actually had understanding ER docs at one hospital and the first thing they did was give me fluids--they knew about dysautonomia.

    Sushi
     
    WillowJ likes this.
  6. Vincent

    Vincent Senior Member

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    The hospital was Mansfield Methodist in Texas. They don't even have a 'patient excellence' number, just an email address for complaints. In the future the only information I'm giving urgent care or whoever else is I have dysautonomia and need iv fluids. I tried to explain why I think this happens and I think that just made me come across as crazy.

    I've thought about calling Medicare and or Jahco and filling a formal complaint, not sure though.
     
  7. Kina

    Kina Moderation Team Lead

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    A hint about ER's. They are not interested in treating chronic issues because to them that wouldn't be an emergency. They love to treat acute issues and it's better just to give them symptoms they can treat -- so you know you are needing an IV for hydration, then give them symptoms related to dehydration and give them no more.

    The question of 'why do you think you are confused' is asked for a reason. Your answer can give them clues to the cause. They will do a drug screen to rule out causes of your confusion. How do they know that you aren't under the influence of some drug or have taken too much of a prescription drug? They are just trying to rule out causes and find the best way of treating you.

    There are complications related to IV's so they do need to do some sort of assessment.

    I don't think they treated you like a criminal but it's obvious that there treatment of you was substandard and you deserve better.
     
    Valentijn, amaru7 and peggy-sue like this.
  8. alex3619

    alex3619 Senior Member

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    The ER at my local hospital knows about OI, and knows that special treatment is necessary. I was surprised when I discovered this. However when I turned up with breathing complications (neurologically induced spasms, similar to asthma) they kept asking if I was anxious too.
     
  9. WillowJ

    WillowJ Senior Member

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    "volume depletion" means low blood volume, which can be related to dysautonomia and ME (although it could also be caused by dehydration, say due to diarrhea).

    This could be an indication for an IV drip (when treated in ER). However it could take 1-2 hours or more just to administer the IV(s). We can't get IV at urgent care in my town any more, either.

    My ER usually says "follow up with your primary care doctor within 3 days". They don't help me with anything other than whatever acute, possibly life-threatening, item brought me there, just the acute problem. Even if it's obvious I cannot bathe myself (because of the issue that brought me there) and admit to not being able to eat properly, they haven't even admitted me to the hospital.

    I am sorry you were diagnosed with anxiety when this wasn't the issue and that you felt brushed off. This seems to happen in ER a lot to chronic illness patients.

    And it seems astoundingly poor to not give you any privacy.
     
    Last edited: May 20, 2014
    peggy-sue likes this.
  10. Aerose91

    Aerose91 Senior Member

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    I went to the Yale ER and was admitted for 4 days. Yale is one if the top 5 neurology departments in the country and they didn't catch my dysautonomia. THEY even told me to my face several times; "your memory and cognitive function are fine" because I remembered 3 words they told me 30 seconds later.

    I was ultimately forced into the psychiatric department and given a diagnosis of depression and told to exercise more (I'm a personal trainer)

    If doctors don't know what you have.instead of admitting it they call u a liar. Its such a shame but I just stay away from all mainstream doctors these days.
     
  11. Vincent

    Vincent Senior Member

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    I agree with you; just stay away from mainstream alopathic medicine. The only trouble in my case was the stress was so high I could not recover. So the only defense to not receive poor ER treatment is to be hyper-vigilant and actively control symptoms (ie lay down most of the day and do nothing).
     
  12. AbbyDear

    AbbyDear

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    felt like being treated like a criminal by a doc once, interrogated. and pretty sure they called my pharmacy to check med history before the office visit, even though they asked for current medications on the intake form... (and there was no history of pain med use at that time).
     
    Last edited: May 20, 2014
  13. peggy-sue

    peggy-sue

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    To be honest, I do not think it's a good idea not to tell the folk at a hospital about all medicines you're taking.

    They might give you things which interact, or cause an overdose.
     
    WillowJ likes this.
  14. AbbyDear

    AbbyDear

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    I feel I should be treated as a person, with respsect, with a serious health problem first, and not right out as a criminal, or simply as a psychosomatic case, when visiting a doctor for professional, serious, health concerns.
     
  15. Aerose91

    Aerose91 Senior Member

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    Lol, that's what I do. No other option
     
  16. PNR2008

    PNR2008 Senior Member

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    The 5 times I went to the Cleveland Clinic ER which is a satellite, I was treated very well, the offices attached had a cardio familiar with POTS and OI and on my second visit they admitted me. I was shocked how well I was treated and my follow-up care is hopeful.

    Although I have been through an ER from hell in FLA, where I was carried in by my brother because I had 3 aura migraines in 2 days. This was while I was visiting him and even though I gave them my DRs phone number in OH, the ER DR assumed I was tripping out on drugs and withheld care for 4 hrs. I was too weak to stick-up for myself, so I just laid there vomiting and wanting to die.

    The DR came in and apologized then gave me demoryl I really wanted to hurt her badly but was too weak. She said because my brother brought me in she was sure I was using drugs. I was 29 at the time and my brother was 44 years old. WTF. As long as I live unfortunately I will never forget that experience. So I know your anger. The best thing to do is check out other hospitals and find a dr there that knows about POTS and keep his name handy.
     
    Valentijn likes this.

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