Overheard in the E.R.

July 30, 2006


What? I didn’t mention that?


Yes, I got to go BACK to the hospital a few days ago. Again. For the third time. In a week and a half.

After writhing in pain for the gazillionth time, it finally became apparent that (a) this wasn’t part of a normal abdominal surgery recovery process and, (b) I wasn’t going to live like this for one more second.

So, off to the hospital we went. Again. For the third time. In a week and a half. (Did I mention that?) At least this time we began the adventure at 2:30 in the afternoon, not 2:30 in the morning.

First, I’ll give you the ending. I have a hemangioma (inflamed blood vessel) in my liver. Not a big deal. There are a lot of folks that have them and don’t even know it. You apparently find these things while looking for other things. And they are typically not painful. So, I have to go have a CT scan done this week to see if that’s the only issue.

Or? It could be reflux. In which case a little over the counter Pepcid would fix this.

But in the meantime, I am taking the following pharmaceutical cocktail twice a day:

1000mg of Vicodin

600mg of Ibuprofen

20mg of Pepcid

.25mg of Xanax


Yeah. I’m a functional idiot for the most part. If they would just drop this little concoction into the water supply in the middle east, I’m pretty damn sure that whole crisis thing would just disappear. Immediately.

So. For those of you who haven’t visited an ER lately, let me just say it is an adventure – on a good day. Here were some of the things I overheard as I shared a draped, cubicle wall with its patient:

[40 year-old African American woman] “Um, yeah, I did have a urinary tract infection and they gave me Bactrum. But, my Medicaid only let’s me have 3 prescriptions and I couldn’t get that one. And I didn’t have no money on account I just got out of “the facility” again. For drugs. So don’t give me no pain medicine ‘cause I’ve been clean for 3 months now and I plan on stayin’ like dat.”

[30-something hipster-doofus / bouncer at local club] “Yeah, we’ll I’ve had these abcesses on my leg for, like, 3 weeks now and I think they could be spider bites ‘cause I just moved into this kickin’ loft and I’ve killed some brown recluse spiders. My roommate has the same problem, but he’s an idiot and won’t go to a doctor. Oh, and also, I’ve been sleepin’ with this chick for like 3 months. Do you think I could have caught this from her? And, yeah, I dig my tattoos – I’ve always been more of a Fragile Rock guy than a pure Muppets dude, and I wanted to reflect that in my body art.”

(When they lanced these things, he screamed like a woman. His voice went up 3 octaves and bordered on falsetto. Some bouncer.)

[Nurse to homeless man] “Sir, you’ve been to the other (county) hospital a lot? Do you know what they did for your heart over there? Did they do a catheritization? Well, it’s hard for us to treat you if you’ve never been here before. You should carry your papers with you, okay?”

(As if he would carry medical records with him. Where would he stash them? In his holey boxer shorts?)

It took us 8 hours to get through the ER. And, let me say this, I am lucky. From my work, I know the head of the ER. I called ahead and told him I was coming. He called the attending physician and let her know I was coming. Husband and I waited no more than 20 minutes to get seen. The majority of the rest of the time was waiting on test results and getting an ultrasound done and read. We waited this long because the LifeFlight helicopters brought 2 different loads of critical accident victims in and there was another brutual car accident with 8 people that arrived.

At some point, you’re just in the queue, and that’s okay. But, as Husband said last night, I don’t ever want to hear that people in this country have no healthcare. Time and time again indigent and needy people were seen, treated thoroughly, and given the best possible care for their injuries or illness. It isn’t right that the ER is where this happens – and that’s another post altogether – but it is very clear that the liberals and their media have no sense of what really goes on in healthcare – and how their agenda is killing it.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got some more meds to take – I’ve stayed out of the hospital for 2 days (in a row!) and I’d like to keep it that way.


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3 Responses to “Overheard in the E.R.”

  1. stephanie Says:

    Ahhh, the ER. Last time I was there (luckily not as the patient but the doting girlfriend) it was a Friday night… and the hospital was a university hospital, smack next to all the dorms. I had to hold the hair back of some random drunk-out-of-her-mind 18-year-old girl puking her guts out. That was fun stuff.
    Hope you’re feeling better soon!

  2. jen Says:

    Damn woman! I sure hope you feel better soon!!

  3. Em Says:

    You took an interesting and humorous post and RUINED it with the mention of liberals and their media. Now I’m going to throw up!! 🙂 🙂