What happened in the ER

  1. (Sorry this is long)

    Now that I am pursuing my education in nursing and will be starting as a CNA in the ED I have been reading a lot about the Emergency Department. My reading here has made me question what happened to me about 5 years ago and I am wondering if anyone could shed some light. Obviously you weren't there but any opinion would be appreciated.

    It was the Saturday before Memorial Day and my doctor's office was closed until Tuesday. I had been having severe on and off abdominal pain for about 6 hours and it was getting worse and worse. I could not stand, sit upright and eventually I couldn't talk. It felt like there was a sharp rock in my abdomen and that my body was contracting on it trying to crush it. It was the worst pain I have ever felt in my life. My boyfriend made me go to the ER against my will (my mom always told me that I was not to go there unless there were bones protruding or uncontrollable bleeding and I had neither). I got there and in tears registered and took a seat. Eventually they brought me back and were very rude to me. They ran blood, stool, and urine tests and did an X-ray and a vaginal exam. They gave me nothing for the pain. They came in and asked me a million questions and insinuated that I was very promiscuous. Then they told me that I had PID and that they had to give me a shot that would hurt more than any other shot I had ever gotten or else I would never be able to have children. They also said that I probably had gonorrhea and that I needed to see my gyno ASAP. The pain eventually went away. I left feeling like dirt. When I went to the Gyno 3 days later she did an exam and took some tests and said that there was nothing wrong with me. My insurance refused to pay for the ER visit, due to some "notes" in the file.

    Do you think I was treated this way because they thought I was drug seeking? If so would there be notes of it in my file? This never even occurred to me at the time, but based on my treatment and wrong diagnosis it sorta rang a bell for me just now. :angryfire Do you know if there is anyway I could find out for sure? This really bothers me as I have never even considered doing drugs. Thanks for any light you can shed.
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  2. 11 Comments

  3. by   L&Dnurse2Be
    I know that in my state you can go to Medical Records and fill out a form to have copies of your chart. I believe you pay by the page, and there is quite a bit of paperwork to complete. I would start by calling Medical Records of that hospital and see what the policy is. Good luck!
  4. by   gr8rnpjt
    [QUOTE=Aleasha](Sorry this is long)

    I would definitely check on it and obtain the medical records. It is a hassle but in this case I believe that it would give you peace of mind, and some closure. You want to try to ascertain why the concluded that you had an STD. You want to make sure that the records confirm that you didn't have one for your peace of mind and for future reference. I remember some ER visits from my early adulthood and now wonder what the heck was going on, since I did not have the knowlege I have now. Perhaps you will never know the reason for the rudeness of the people who examined you. But, you might gain some insight by looking at those records.
  5. by   grammyr
    At our facility, we don't charge for records being sent to another doctor or hospital. Ask your GYN to request the records.
  6. by   DusktilDawn
    Quote from Shadelyn
    (Sorry this is long)

    Now that I am pursuing my education in nursing and will be starting as a CNA in the ED I have been reading a lot about the Emergency Department. My reading here has made me question what happened to me about 5 years ago and I am wondering if anyone could shed some light. Obviously you weren't there but any opinion would be appreciated.

    It was the Saturday before Memorial Day and my doctor's office was closed until Tuesday. I had been having severe on and off abdominal pain for about 6 hours and it was getting worse and worse. I could not stand, sit upright and eventually I couldn't talk. It felt like there was a sharp rock in my abdomen and that my body was contracting on it trying to crush it. It was the worst pain I have ever felt in my life. My boyfriend made me go to the ER against my will (my mom always told me that I was not to go there unless there were bones protruding or uncontrollable bleeding and I had neither). I got there and in tears registered and took a seat. Eventually they brought me back and were very rude to me. They ran blood, stool, and urine tests and did an X-ray and a vaginal exam. They gave me nothing for the pain. They came in and asked me a million questions and insinuated that I was very promiscuous. Then they told me that I had PID and that they had to give me a shot that would hurt more than any other shot I had ever gotten or else I would never be able to have children. They also said that I probably had gonorrhea and that I needed to see my gyno ASAP. The pain eventually went away. I left feeling like dirt. When I went to the Gyno 3 days later she did an exam and took some tests and said that there was nothing wrong with me. My insurance refused to pay for the ER visit, due to some "notes" in the file.

    Do you think I was treated this way because they thought I was drug seeking? If so would there be notes of it in my file? This never even occurred to me at the time, but based on my treatment and wrong diagnosis it sorta rang a bell for me just now. :angryfire Do you know if there is anyway I could find out for sure? This really bothers me as I have never even considered doing drugs. Thanks for any light you can shed.
    I don't think you were treated this way because they thought you were drug seeking, I think they morally judged you to be a promiscuous person and treated you as such. It sound like they made a lot of assumptions about your condition and character and then proceeded to pass judgment and demonstrated a complete lack of professionalism based on those assumptions and judgements.

    Obtain a copy of those records. Also despite the fact this happend 5 years ago, I would send a very strongly worded letter to this facility about this incident. Obviously this still bothers you despite the passage of 5 years.
  7. by   sirI
    Quote from grammyr
    At our facility, we don't charge for records being sent to another doctor or hospital. Ask your GYN to request the records.
    Only problem with this the GYN will, also, probably charge for these records.....
  8. by   Aneroo
    I agree...
    Young woman walks in, 'PID shuffle' (bend over holding abdomen), sexually active in any manner- BOOM! You're a floozy.
    I have a history of ovarian cysts, and went to the urgent care for it. The urgent care I usually see wasn't open, and they don't have ultrasound. I was treated so poorly at the urgent care. I remember the doctor, still have to work with him in the ER now. I remember telling the nurse as she was setting up the pelvic tray that "I need to go pee". She said ok, didn't give me a cup or anything for a speciman. I was focused on not peeing myself, didn't think anything of it. During the pelvic she suggested to the MD that we do an in and out cath for urine. :angryfire Which also meant he had to press like hell on my tummy to get any urine out since I had literally just emptied my bladder!
    I ended up having to go to the main ED for an ultrasound anyways. A lot of times women are dx with bacterial vaginosis and get antibiotics for that. -Andrea
  9. by   Really An Actress
    Sorry, have to ask. How did your boyfriend MAKE you go there against your will? Which "they" are you referring to? The doctor, the nurses, or both? How did they insinuate you were promiscuous? Determining whether someone is sexually active or has unprotected sex is a big determinate in diagnosing pelvic pain. A nurse who explains the implications of untreated PID or STDs was simply doing her job.

    Had you taken anything for pain before you went to the ER? Right or wrong, sometimes ER folk use this as a basis to determine pain levels. If you had pain for six hours and hadn't taken anything, it may have seemed that your pain wasn't as severe as you desribed. Keep in mind, please, I'm only offering a different opinion based on what you wrote here. I'm not disagreeing with you.

    I'm sorry you had this terrible pain and felt like you were treated so badly. I guess I'm feeling a little defensive today, but it seems like you received the proper tests,and a diagnosis was given. I know sometimes patients project their own feelings on to what they believe the nurses think (I've read enough Press Ganeys to know that no matter how professional and nonjudgemental the nurse is, some patients are perceive the worst).

    In any case, I'm glad you're fine now and wish you could have had a better experience.
  10. by   avado
    I'd research your diagnosis on www.emedicine.com when you get your records or research the diagnosis now to determine if it was that and see what the treatment was that you got..ex antibiotic shot (painful anyway) I'd get your gyn note too to see if she/he try to diagnosis too. Importantly have a someone with a medical background explain it since you are not in the field yet.
    As for insurance, depends on your company. Ex my husband sliced his finger and had to go to the er. Insurance paid because its an accident. my two year had a high fever and sinus drainage before we caught an airplane flight so we took him to the Er. insurance did not pay because its deemed a office visit.
    Sounds you were totally covered as in..being examined, tests etc.. its better to cover it just in case. I am not a er nurse but a floor nurse that see lots of diagnosis that aren't always pure textbook. Heck, what i learned in school doesn't fan to every pt. Once you get into the field more its more and more knowledge to learn as its an art practicing medicine than true black and white science. You are getting a good start to be a cna while in school to learn these skills. Especially in the er!
    Good luck to your future and keep on learning!
  11. by   Shadelyn
    Like I said it was 5 years ago and I was in alot of pain, but this is what I remember. I had taken Ibuprofen and it didn't help anything. I don't usually seek medical attention unless I absolutly need it and even when I do I'm a little (okay alot) stubborn about it. The x-BF on the other hand makes a Dr. Appointment over a sneeze. Did I need to go to the ER? Yes I think I did, but it took alot of convincing on his part to get me into the car to go there. In hind sight 9/10 pain should merit an Emergency I my eyes I guess. The perceived insinuation of promiscuity came from the fact that the nurse asked me the same questions about my sexual activities 3 times each and lectured me about lying to her then made my BF leave and asked them again. I had no problem answering her questions and answered them truthfully the first time. They said that a lab came back with more than normal white cells in the vag sample and that is what they based the PID diagnosis on. I had been to the gyno 3 weeks before and everything was peachy and it was peachy 3 days after.

    Please know that I do realize that you probably see more yahoo's than you can shake a stick at on a daily basis. I was young and scared and didn't really understand why they felt the need to treat me that way. It is refreshing to know that they probably didn't treat me that way because they thought I was an addict. But I think I'll get the records anyway just to rest my mind.

    I did find out that I had ovarian cysts about a month afterward maybe that was the problem all along.
  12. by   Shadelyn
    Quote from Aneroo
    During the pelvic she suggested to the MD that we do an in and out cath for urine. :angryfire Which also meant he had to press like hell on my tummy to get any urine out since I had literally just emptied my bladder!Andrea
    That sounds way more unpleasant than my experience. Shame on her for being [a word I can't say on this messageboard]!
  13. by   Really An Actress
    I've had a ruptured ovarian cyst before so I understand how painful this was for you.

    However, I opted to writhe around on the floor at home for hours because I couldn't bring myself to have a pelvic by the doctors I work with.

    I think more education needs to be done for the public regarding PID.

    Again, Shadelyn, sorry you had this experience.

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