Tuesday, December 27, 2016

7 1/2 HOURS !!!

Okay why does this always happen on a weekend or holiday?
My husband had a hernia repair on Tuesday and by Friday had to be taken by ambulance to the ER because it was the Christmas weekend and no doctors were in. He was having some confusion and I worried he may have had a stroke. He was seen right away since he was brought in by ambulance and diagnosed with an accident overdose of Oxy that he was taking for pain. Wait, What?
He was taking the prescribed amount every 4 hours as prescribed. How can you overdose following the doctors orders?! Well apparently he did. They did blood work and urinalysis and everything looked okay so they sent him home.
Saturday he was doing somewhat better but it still bothered me that he was sleeping ALL the time and still had "Altered Mental Status". He had these symptoms a year ago when he had encephalitis and was in a coma for 10 days! I wanted answers. I tried to call the surgeon Saturday evening but got his answering service. I thought okay I would wait until after Christmas. Thinking the doctors office would be open.
Monday after Christmas My husband woke up with swelling and redness in the incision site so I called his surgeon and was told he was on vacation until Jan 4th so I ask what I was supposed to do in case of emergency and she said go to the ER. I ask if there was an on call doctor filling in for the surgeon and she said yes, here is his number. I called the number at 9Am and got no answer after leaving a frantic message about my husbands condition but got no return call so by 12:30 I tried to call our regular family doctor and got the same information. She was on vacation until Jan 4th! What?! This is ridiculous!!
This is not an actual photo of our ER. I found it on the internet but all the rooms in our ER were full
I put him in the car and drove to the ER. By this time I was fuming!
We walked into the ER and all the waiting rooms were full of sick people with masks on due to the flu outbreak. Great now we get to get exposed to the flu!
We tried to understand under the circumstances, if these poor sick people tried to see their doctors the day AFTER Christmas and they were all on vacation. This caused the poor Emergency room doctors and nurses to be way over worked. The very kind nurse that took care of was a traveling nurse and works all over the state and he said the average wait time in an ER is 24 hours! What?! When I told him and the ER doctor what had happened and that both of our doctors were on vacation they shook their heads and said "so that's why we are so bombarded with patients today." They said they were busier on Christmas day.
We were finally called to the ER 7 1/2 hours after our arrival.
I think this is uncalled for and should be reported to someone. I will be voicing my anger to both of our doctors and especially the on call doctor who was supposed to be covering surgery patients for our surgeon.
Hope those doctors had a wonderful Christmas because ours was hell. A sick husband that had Altered Mental Status and swelling in his incision and me who was totally stressed out about the whole thing. We had no Christmas, thanks doctors!!!

Thanks to the friendly staff at Bay Area Hospital my husband is much better today.
Cat Scan was clear, no stroke, no encephalitis, blood work was good, urinalysis was clear, vitals were perfect. They said he may be starting an infection at the incision site and gave him antibiotics. They also told me that sometimes the stress from surgery can cause confusion and things can seem foggy for awhile.
Has anyone ever experienced this sort of situation?


Ozstuff said...

Hi Patti - In my part of the world everything closes down between Christmas and the New Year. Medical emergencies are the most important concern, of course, but, on a lighter note, here the tradesmen all seem to take their three and four week vacations at this time of year so if an emergency plumber or electrician is required TOO BAD. We enjoy universal health care through the public systems. At least our very good public hospitals area fully staffed over the holiday period although when there is such a huge demand waiting times are very long in emergency rooms.
I'm so happy to read the end of your story which tells your friends that your husband is recovering well after his ordeal. May I send you my best wishes for a peaceful and healthy new year. I hope 2017 holds great things for you and your family.

Wilma Feuersteinchen said...

best wishes for you and your husband!

indybev said...

So sorry to hear of your Christmas chaos, but glad to hear it was nothing serious and your husband is on the mend. My son and daughter-in-law are health care workers, and have remarked that things at the hospital are crazy during the holidays. Hopefully, the New Year will bring you all good things, and this Christmas will be just an unpleasant memory!

Anne (cornucopia) said...

Wow, how awful! I'm glad it sounds like your husband will be okay. It's scary to think that's what medical care has come to these days: everyone is on vacation and the ER is overloaded because of it.

Lori Saul said...

Yes it happens a lot around the Holidays. My husband got hit in the head with a flying bowl to his head (from the lathe) on Thanksgiving morning and this year I got bit by a dog (in the middle of a ruckus) on x-mas eve both ending up in emergency which was way understaffed.
So sorry to hear about this event for you-may the New Year bring you good health and luck Patti!

Michele said...

i'm so grateful that this frightening story has a happy ending. i send my thoughts for continued excellent recovery for your husband and respite for yourself! take good care and may you new year be happy AND healthy! xo

Deann said...

I'm sorry for your Christmas and your grief, grateful that everything worked out for you and your dear husband.

I wish you a better Happier New Year all year through. Health, Happiness and peace be yours in 2017.