Surgical Symphony

| Muncy, PA, USA | Awesome Workers, Health & Body, Musical Mayhem

(I am about to have foot surgery, and the staff and I are waiting on Dr. Anesthesia. When he finally arrives, he attempts to joke with me by singing “Oh, What a Beautiful Morning,” as it is raining outside. After seeing him and Dr. Surgeon, Surgical Nurse and Anesthesia Nurse wheel me past OR 1 and into OR 2. I am moved onto the operating table.)

Me: “Great. Dr. Anesthesia got ‘Oh, What a Beautiful Morning’ stuck in my head.”

(As I sing the opening line, Dr. Anesthesia joins in (off key). As I progress through the song, Surgical Nurse joins in. By the time I hit the chorus, everyone in OR 2 is boisterously singing with me. And as we finish, the door between OR 1 and OR 2 opens.)

OR 1 Nurse: “That was great!”

(The door closes and we are all chuckling.)

Me: “Okay. Next procedure, I want you all to memorize the libretto to ‘Evita.'”

(With that, my surgical ensemble laughed and knocked me out, just as I was adding: “Foot Surgery, the Musical!”)

Error: Catch-22

| Australia | Technology

(I cannot log into the computers. All the assessments have been made online so it is really important for me to be able to login. I try to log an IT helpdesk ticket but it refuses to let me without logging in. I ring the help number.)

IT Helpdesk: “What is your fault number you received after logging a help-desk ticket?”

(I explain my problem is I can’t login which means I can’t lodge a help desk ticket.)

IT Helpdesk: “We can’t help you until you lodge a help desk ticket.”

(I still don’t have access.)

Levels Of Service Are Bi-Poles Apart

| USA | Bad Behavior, Employees, Health & Body, Non-Dialogue

Years ago I was misdiagnosed with being bipolar until it was discovered I had PCOS (Polycystic Ovary Syndrome) which causes a woman to have a serious hormone imbalance — imagine having PMS 24/7 and a 100 times worse. After getting my PCOS under control with the correct medications and the right doctors everything got better emotionally for me. No more sudden bursts of anger or crying for no reason, etc.

Then about three years later I break my arm and have to go to the ER by myself. I call my husband at work and he came to the ER later on.

While in the hospital my medical records show I had been diagnosed with being bipolar BUT also showed it was a misdiagnosis. However, the ER doctor on call seems to only see that I was diagnosed with a mental disorder and that is that. He seems to completely ignore the misdiagnosis and during the my time in the ER between x-rays and scans, etc. he keeps trying to get me to take the same antipsychotic medications I was on before and even loudly berates me because I “stopped taking my meds.” I try explaining, even give him both my family doctor’s and my gynecologist’s number but he just won’t believe me. Even when my husband finally arrives and tries to talk to him the doctor just won’t listen.

And on top of that, the ER nurses somehow find out about it as well and a few of them (not all) start treating me as if I should be admitted to the psychiatric wing of the hospital for not taking the antipsychotic medications.

The final straw is when the ER doctor leans over me while I am lying down on a hospital bed and gets up in my face and threatens to have the medication injected into me even if they have to hold me down and have me admitted to the psychiatric wing. My husband gets up then and almost grabs the doctor (he later said he was going to beat the crap out of him) but I tell him to stop and I said the magic words that I implore any patient of a hospital in a similar situation use, “I have the right as a patient to refuse any and all medications and procedures and I’m demanding to see a patient advocate NOW!”

Both I and my husband agreed later on that we both have never seen a person get so pale so fast.

The doctor leaves quickly without saying another word and we assume he went to get a patient advocate but about 30 minutes later when a nurse (one of the good ones) comes in to check on us we ask about our request. She didn’t know we had requested to see one and when she goes to check at the nurses station they don’t have any request either. They go ahead and call for one then.

When the patient advocate arrives and my husband and I explain what has been happening he helps us lodge a complaint against the ER doctor and we never saw that doctor again while waiting to be discharged. The few nurses who gave me grief also seem to avoid our room which is fine with us. The patient advocate did say the doctor in question has been updated to the fact my bipolarism really was a misdiagnosis and that we made a formal complaint about his behavior. The advocate ended up apologising on the doctor’s behalf which we both thought was unfair since it should be the doctor doing it.

On leaving the ER with my arm in a cast and feeling good from the painkillers, we pass the nurses’ station. Only the nurses and staff who did NOT judge me smile and say their goodbyes and get wells. The few who treated me like I was less than human have their heads down, apparently doing “paper work.”

I don’t blame the hospital for the way I was treated. I blame that doctor and the few nurses for assuming things without either knowing the whole story or refusing to listen, and thinking anyone with a mental disorder are liars or not to be taken seriously.

It scares me that there could be people with mental disorders being treated the way I was treated.

Don’t Get Testy(sterone) With Me

| Employees, Health & Body, Ignoring & Inattentive

(I’m a 17-year-old female. I haven’t started university yet but I study medicine, specifically infectious disease, on my own time because I find it interesting and I hope to go into the field when I go to university. I help my neighbor with her animals. One day one of her cats is attacked by a different neighbor’s dog and injured. Unfortunately the cat bit me very deeply several times on my finger when I was holding her to help examine her and my father takes me to the ER. This exchange happens when the nurse comes in to give me precautionary rabies vaccine and immunoglobins.)

Nurse #1: “All right, let’s get this over with. I’m going to be giving you a shot now. It’s to make sure—“

Me: “That I haven’t been exposed to rabies, and if I have been it will prevent it from infecting me.”

Nurse #1: “Right. I see they already explained it to you.”

(I see her start to draw up the vaccine. I’m a little concerned when she has trouble right off the bat, struggling to pull it up into the fairly small needle.)

Me: “Um, the vaccine shouldn’t be that thick, right?”

Nurse #1: “Sometimes it is a little harder.”

(She turns the vial a little to get a different grip and I am horrified to see that it is not, in fact, the correct vaccine. She is trying to pull up testosterone.)

Me: “Ma’am, I don’t think that’s the right vaccine.”

Nurse #1: *ignores* “Ah, there we go. Now please roll up your sleeve. We can do this on your shoulder.”

Me: *moves away from her slightly* “Ma’am, I saw the vial. You should be giving me ImoVax or RabAvert. That vial is marked testosterone.”

Nurse #1: *gets red faced mad* “Now listen here, missy, I know what I’m doing. Now come here!” *literally lunges at me with the needle*


(It took my father and two other nurses to get Nurse #1 to put down the syringe and actually look at the vial. Thankfully I got a different nurse to give me the right vaccine and immunoglobins.)

Nurse #2: “I’m sorry about that. She’s being let go in about two weeks and she’s been acting… erratic. She won’t be in the ER after this.”

Me: “Thanks. Do you think I could… see the bottles this time?”

Fill In The Blanks

| England, UK | Employees, Health & Body, Ignoring & Inattentive

(My friend isn’t feeling well, so my boyfriend and I pay for a taxi and take them to A&E. When we get there my friend runs to the bathroom and I go to the counter to check them in. There are two people, a man in a suit typing away and a woman in a nursing uniform who looks less busy than the man. I decide to try going to the less busy person first.)

Me: *stands in front of the nurse, who stares blankly at her screen for a few minutes*

Me: “Excuse me?”

Nurse: *blankly stares at me*

Me: “I need to check my friend in?”

Nurse: *blank stare*

Me: “They’re unwell?”

Nurse: *blank stare*

Me: “They need to see a doctor?”

Nurse: “Oh. Right. This man will help you.” *motions to male typing on his computer*

Man: *blank stare*

(I’m really glad that wasn’t the place where people go for emergency treatment or anything.)