Posts Tagged ‘ER’

Every time my mother has felt ill, she has reminded me that she has written her obituary and it is in the computer.

The woman has had two strokes, two TIA’s,  breast cancer, and a total of 24 surgeries or procedures in her 89 1/2 years of life.  She has about everything wrong with her heart that can be and the 24th procedure was this month.  So, you can well imagine that I have kept that thought in my mind:  “My obituary is in the computer.”

We thought she was having a third heart attack for the month and took her into the emergency room in intense pain.  Luckily, and I say this with all my heart, she got a good physician (this time) in the ER.  Last time she was in (this month) she was in for six hours and had a second chest x-ray after three hours because they just realized it was blurry.   This doc knew right away that he was not dealing with a heart attack and ordered an MRI on her abdomen.

They found a larger gall stone had fallen into a duct and was blocking the area between her liver and intestines.  Her liver was enlarged.  She was in immense pain and in an ambulance some 50 miles to Indiana University Medical Center.

We have spent most of our time since at Indiana Medical Center and found it to be the best, ABSOLUTE BEST, bunch of nurses, student nurses, doctors, interns, cleaning staff, people on earth.  The one ‘poor quality’ nurse really stood out after seeing so many who rushed in to help her to the bathroom just because they heard her tell us she was going to need to go soon.  She rarely had to push a button.

We were told that she had two options and neither was good.  If they did not do surgery she would die and if they did surgery, there was a 70% chance she would die.  That night, when I went back to her apartment to pick up some things for her, I turned on the computer and looked for her obituary.  I had already grabbed the name of the mortuary.

There was NO OBITUARY.  What there was, was a read-only file called obituary.  I did not tell mom that this document, that I presumed she had worked on so hard, was blank.

Ten days, a PIC line (which is a line they put in after no one can bear to stick her again since her blood clots in the needles anymore), and a procedure later, she was recovering and I got up the nerve to tell her about the missing file.  Her response:

“Oh, I know that.  I haven’t written it yet.”

WTF, is she just playing with my head?

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I must add to this, before I have even begun.  My, we are off to a good start.  One more day being sleep deprived and I will be a raving lunatic.  I need my sleep!


So, to add: This all started off last week, when the dog had to have surgery on a certain gland.  I did think I could have made some fame on filming the Irritating little Chihuahua on pain killers and anesthetics, but that would have been just too cruel.  So, that was ER  visit #1.


Then, day before yesterday, we had EMT son on hospital ER #2.  He is trying to eat as if he has low blood sugar and seems much more energetic.  His mother and brother both had the problem, starting at about the age EMT is now, but doctor’s visits are scheduled.

Yesterday, I picked mom up to take her to the Ophthalmologist.  She kept sliding in little hints about “having trouble breathing” and “legs are leaking” (they used to call it dropsy) and “swollen legs.”  I made her show me her leg and off we went to the Doctor.  His offices said take her to the ER. 


After some cajoling, I made a deal with her and took her to the Ophthalmologist and then out to eat lunch and then she would willingly go to the ER.  I have been known to take her to town, on the pretext of taking her shopping and, instead I dropped her off at the ER.  So, she knows there is very little wiggle room there, but she wiggles anyway.


Later that day, at ER#3, in seven days, mom is admitted.  She has Congestive Heart Failure and these visits are becoming increasingly common.  They have to drain the water out of her, which isn’t as painful as it sounds.


It is mainly giving her an elephant shot (in her IV) of water pills and then she does the draining.  She may even come home today.  I plan on sleeping after that. 


I announced to the whole family, last night, that the next person who goes to the ER will just be shot on sight.

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EMT has had a health problem lately and passed out twice yesterday.  The second time was around 10:30pm and off we went to the emergency room, again.

He requested the ER in Franklin, Indiana; as an EMT with experience in these things.  And, he was right. That had to be the most efficient ER I have seen. Triage was immediate.  Before he could fall asleep, they were in drawing blood and taking an EKG.  The doctor was in next and ordred at CaT Scan.  We were out in an hour, I bet, not counting drive time and the delay in checking out.

The delay is because of a drunk.  How interesting to see two uniformed Police Officers and just about every person on staff, surrounding a drunk.  A drunk who has to be one of the stupidist drunks in town.

First, the guy is at a bar and calls police on his cell phone to report a disturbance.  Ordinarily, I would consider that a wise move, except he was the one who was making the disturbance.  America’s Dumbest Criminals, move over, this one called  to turn himself in.  

So, he is screaming the whole time he is in the ER; privacy laws not withstanding.  His mouth just went on and on.  He was yelling at the officers because they made him poop.  The big one, the officer not the poop (thankfully, I did not have to see that.), but the big officer who scared him was all of 5’6″ probably.  Of course, the drunk was a pretty scrawny guy, and very drunk. 

Then, he was mad at the hospital because he never went to the ER before and left without pills and “goll darn it.”  he wanted pills.  Just what he needed on top of probably twenty beers.  I’m sure the officers at the jail, which he was on his way to, would have let him keep those pills too.  Right!

The final words I heard from the hospital staff was, “And, it’s not even Friday night.”

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