Saturday, October 2, 2010

Patients and Patience

Some of you know about my recent stay in the hospital. It's is nothing serious and it will soon cease to be a problem. My visit to the ER was unlike any other. Citrus Memorial Hospital us undergoing many changes and a new, larger, improved ER is one of them. I am impressed! This time there were no long lines, no waiting, and I didn't even have to present my insurance cards to be treated.

I'm not sure what time I got in there, but by the time I got to my room it was 2:30 AM, and by then I had received enough saline solution that my blood pressure was back to normal and I felt fine. From the time I entered the hospital until Friday afternoon, I could have nothing, not even a sip of water. They said I shouldn't be thirsty as I was getting all my fluids in the saline solution IV. My mouth was dry but I did feel fine. Friday afternoon they checked out my stomach and said everything was now OK

So Friday afternoon they say I'm OK, but they wouldn't let me go home. They wanted another night. All the while I'm getting 250 ml of saline solution around the clock. And they said I could eat. Well, they really didn't mean "eat" as in something you might actually chew. They meant "eat" as in through a straw. But that was alright, I felt fine. Of course my system was doing a great job of getting rid of all this fluid. In fact, I had so much fluid going in that my blood pressure was elevated.

I'm a thinking person and I thought that if my blood pressure was too low because of lack of fluid, then too much fluid would cause high blood pressure. That seemed logical to me. I talked to the nurse and she had no idea if that were true. In the meantime they were taking my blood pressure every time I fell asleep. Late Friday night they dropped the flow down to 125 ml per hour. My one kidney was processing 230 ml per hour. So as the hours passed my blood pressure fell to normal and stayed there and I was able to talk the nurse into stopping the IV. WHAT A RELIEF not having to drag the stand with the IV to the bathroom all the time. I still felt fine.

Around 9:00 AM Saturday, the Gastro-Intestinal doctor came by to say that everything looked good and I was free to go as soon as the doctor of record signed me out. OH BOY! I feel fine and I'm going home. All I have to do is wait to be signed out. 10:00 passes. 11:00 passes and I still feel fine. It's noon now and I have another meal by straw. I feel fine, but I'm getting antsy. The guy in the next bed is getting antsy. He had his family there to get him the day before and at the last minute the doctor discovered that they hadn't been giving him his heart medicine, so he'd have to stay another day. He also had clearance from his heart doctor, and he was also waiting for the same doctor of record.

1:00 PM and my level of antsyness is reaching a new height. The nurse assures me that the doctor would be coming shortly. I still feel fine, but I'm starting to get mad. The guy in the next be feels the same way and our anger is starting to feed off each other. 2:00 arrives without the doctor and it's time to call Barb, our retires nurse friend. "Can I sign myself out?" I asked. She said I could. Armed with new confidence I accosted the nurse and told her that at 3:00 PM, I was going to sign myself out. She got on the phone to find the doctor. He told her that he was not available and gave her another doctor to call. I feel fine and now my anxiety is going down.

3:00 comes and I'm about climbing the walls. The nurse is trying her best, I suppose. My room mate and I are starting to think that the doctors are making us wait for spite. In a few more minutes I went back in my room and removed the heart monitor and put on my shirt. I wrapped the cables around the transmitter and took it to the nurse and told her that I was signing out. She said OK, but she would have to print out a form for me to sign. I called Helen and I was out. Wow, what a little adrenaline can do for you.

I have to give particular credit to a nurse that took me down for my endoscopy. Prepping my for the procedure, she found that I had about 20 patches on my upper body where I was connected to monitors, EKG, etc. I told her not to worry, I'd take them off under a hot shower. She said that the longer they're on, the harder it is to get them off. Then she said she would take them off when the procedure was finished. I didn't realize what she meant until I got ready to leave the hospital. The only patches I had were the ones being used by the sending unit I wore. She had removed all the other patches while I was still sedated. What a girl!!

This afternoon we met with a couple who are adopting one of the pups. The lab female was already taken so they had their choice of the two males. They chose the white one that has garnered so much attention from my blog readers. They seem to be very nice and I'm sure he will be going to a fine home.

That's all for now and I still feel fine.

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