What was the MOST ridiculous thing a patient came to the ER for? - page 35

and do you have to treat them? I am just curious. Your stories always seem to either crack me up or shake my head in amazement. Thanks for sharing :)... Read More

  1. by   AngelGirl
    Quote from JUSTYSMOM
    and do you have to treat them?

    I am just curious. Your stories always seem to either crack me up or shake my head in amazement.

    Thanks for sharing
    The more difficult concept for me to understand is the flagrant use of ambulances by those who don't need them.
    I usually don't say anthing, but this one time, I simply HAD to KNOW why the elderly woman called an ambulance at 6 o'clock in the morning.
    Our conversation went something like this:

    "Why did you come to the ER?"
    Pt: Because I don't know whether or not I took my pill. I'm supposed to take Xanax 3 times a day, and I don't know if I took it last night.

    "So, you came here to see a doctor?"
    Pt: Yes, I have to see a doctor.

    "Why do you have to see a doctor?"
    Pt: Because I don't know if I took my pill.

    "Are you feeling anxious?"
    Pt: No, honey. I'm not anxious at all.

    "So, why did you need an ambulance?"
    Pt: I had to get to the hospital.

    "Yes, but why an ambulance?
    Pt: I needed a ride.

    "Don't you have someone, family, friend or neighbor, who could give you a ride?"
    Pt: Nobody's up this early in the morning, and I don't drive anymore.

    "What about calling a taxi?"
    Pt: HONEY! Those cost MONEY!"

    (I guess she figures that ambulance rides are free.)

    And we wonder where our medical resources go....obviously not to the ones who pay so that others can use them so flagrantly.
  2. by   AngelGirl
    Quote from SWFlorida
    These trivial complaints are generally not covered by any form of insurance and even medicaid is cracking down on non emergent visits. The patients are usually very angry when they receive a bill for $600.00 in the mail. More and more hospitals are becomming more and more aggressive at collecting on these bills also. The way to treat under educated consumers who utilize a resource for the wrong reasons is to hit them in the pocket book. Paying a huge bill will get them to think about visiting their primary care physician first or trying home treatments. People just dont want to think any more. They'd rather go crying to "Mommy" aka the "ER" than to try to take care of it themselves. We've created a very dependent society.

    RE: making people financially responsible for their flagrant use of ER resources:
    Now that's the BEST NEWS I've heard in a LONG time.

    And I fully agree that we have created a dependent society. Thanks for stating in so well.
  3. by   dogsrbarking
    Quote from AngelGirl
    RE: making people financially responsible for their flagrant use of ER resources:
    Now that's the BEST NEWS I've heard in a LONG time.

    And I fully agree that we have created a dependent society. Thanks for stating in so well.
    Back to crazy ER visits...It was an insane Saturday evening in the ED. We had just finished pulling a GSW out of the car and had started working on him when 2 units arrived with 2 new pts. We didn't hear the ringdown as of course no one was near the radio. Turns out one of our new amb. pts. (whom I might add appeared alert, oriented, sitting up, pink, and dry) had decided to spray a can of pesitside into a glass to sip on for his evening cocktail...obviously I didn't know this when I gave him a gown and pulled the curtain. I was standing just outside the curtain just starting to get report when we heard a loud crash, I pulled back the curtain and there on the floor lay my pt. defib paddles hanging and the lovely scent of burnt skin lingering. Yes he shocked himself at 360j. As the Paramedic and I picked him up to put him on the guerny much to my surprise his prosthetic leg came off (which he received after jumping onto power lines) in my hand.
    Very happily the pt. was fine. I of course can laugh now but at the time it just was NOT the least bit funny.l
    Last edit by dogsrbarking on Jun 24, '05
  4. by   BlessedNurse
    Quote from JUSTYSMOM
    and do you have to treat them?

    I am just curious. Your stories always seem to either crack me up or shake my head in amazement.

    Thanks for sharing
    one of the funniest: guy who had a big roach crawl in his ear, and to make matters worse - he sprayed pesticide in there to kill it. Then his grandma told him to try to poor baby oil in his ear to kill it. Needless to say, all it did was make the roach slippery.


    Non-emergent one: Family brought in the grandma by ambulance because she had diarrhea in her pants and they didn't want to change her.
  5. by   dogsrbarking
    Quote from BlessedNurse
    one of the funniest: guy who had a big roach crawl in his ear, and to make matters worse - he sprayed pesticide in there to kill it. Then his grandma told him to try to poor baby oil in his ear to kill it. Needless to say, all it did was make the roach slippery.


    Non-emergent one: Family brought in the grandma by ambulance because she had diarrhea in her pants and they didn't want to change her.
    I agree that these pts. do not belong in the ER but if they didn't keep coming alot of us wouldn't have jobs. How many of your patients are truly emergent?
  6. by   BlessedNurse
    Quote from dogsrbarking
    I agree that these pts. do not belong in the ER but if they didn't keep coming alot of us wouldn't have jobs. How many of your patients are truly emergent?

    probably about 20%
  7. by   bthynn
    Here is a good one...busy saturdayin the ER ambulance calls in bringing a pt that had just had surgery on her toe and was having severe pain.. Pt arrived with something red on her toe with the odor of ketchup... pt demand percocet 10 for her severe pain the md gave her ES Tylenol and he said she had bbq sauce on her toe...we asked if he tasted it...needless to say she left unhappy.
  8. by   wayover20
    Ok, get ready....I'm in triage and a pt comes in. He and his wife explain he just spent 3 days in another hospital for a kidney stone. His admitting doctor could never get the nephrologist to come see him (????). He said he got the dc instructions but on the way home they decide to stop at our hospital and have someone here call that darned 'ol nephrologist again to come see him (who isn't even on our staff). It took me so long to get them to understand all hospitals are not "connected", that since he was a new pt. to us he would have to go thru the process just like every other pt. and let the ER doc see him if he had a medical problem. He swore he felt fine, just wanted that dr. called and he could just come see him before he gets all the way home. The ER is ripping with patients everywhere, I have 9 more just waiting to be triaged and this nut comes in. ARRRGGHHH!!
  9. by   gauge14iv
    1. Sunday am - walked off the ambulance with the medic - she was pulling her hair and crying and acting as if something was really wrong - "I have dandruff and the flakes are really killing me!!!!" (At 7 AM on a sunday morning no less.)

    2. Ambulance arrives with 1 year old baby - no parent in sight - mom is at work, she'll get here as soon as she gets off work (it's 1 now, she gets off at 5 - sitter sent child in. Why? She didn't have a thermometer and the mother told her to call an ambulance to check the baby's temperature. I did read that mother, and the sitter who showed up with her, the riot act about the appropriate use of emergency service personnel and equipment and gave her a thermometer from the supply room. Kids temp? 99.1

    3. "I think I am pregnant - I want a pregnancy test"


    As for sticking the bill to people? They could honestly care less. If they have nothing t begin with, there is nothing that can be taken away.
    Last edit by gauge14iv on Jun 25, '05
  10. by   fiara
    [QUOTE=JUSTYSMOM]and do you have to treat them?

    I am just curious. Your stories always seem to either crack me up or shake my head in amazement.



    I work in the Uk and recently we had a man come in with a headache for 3 months but he did'nt go to his Doctor or use any analgesia for the 3 months!

    Also had a woman who was bitten by her dog asking if the cut she received will leave a scar.

    We also have drug users coming in with complaints of abdominal pains who we cannulate then they leave the hospital with cannula still in their arm!

    There is also the homeless alcoholic who gets drunk so he can come to the hospital by ambulance and have a bed for the night.
  11. by   the diva
    Yes be real careful what you ASSUME about people going to the er for c/o menstrual pain. I too suffer from endo! It is one of the worst misunderstood PAINFUL diseases out there. I am only 28 about to have my second surgery just for this disease. Doc is recommending a hyst, but I would like one more child. I agree with you the pain is FIFTY times worse than childbirth. I also had a natural delivery, no meds 9pds 13oz and I would rather do that again than experience the month to month pains of endo! So FYI to all the Nurses please take our menstrual cramps complaints serious!
    On a lighter note this is one of the threads that I enjoy reading on a regular bases :chuckle !

    Quote from nadja9
    Ohhhh, I'd be careful with this one Fab4. I started having problems when I was 12, dx with possible endometriosis at age 15 (first surgery). I have an extremely high pain tolerance, probably because of those experiences so young. I used to take every OTC pain med you could, with absolutely no relief. When I finally got prescription pain meds, getting rid of the pain meant I couldn't even function, just sleep. It SUCKED. When I finally had my daughter (which incidentally ended my painful periods but not my problems), one of the first things out of my mouth was that birth had NOTHING on my cramps. I had a natural delivery, no epidural, no meds. Labor didn't even touch what I went through on a monthly basis.

    My uterus went to it's resting place at the age of 35. After multiple bouts of anemia, numerous surgeries for polyps, a fibroid the size of a baseball, I had a vag hyst. I had a uterus 14cm big (my doctor, who is incredible, said, "My that's a BIG one!), still did it vaginally. Post op pain wasn't as bad as the cramps of my youth.

    Just food for thought.
  12. by   lpnstudentin2010
    Quote from the diva
    Yes be real careful what you ASSUME about people going to the er for c/o menstrual pain. I too suffer from endo! It is one of the worst misunderstood PAINFUL diseases out there. I am only 28 about to have my second surgery just for this disease. Doc is recommending a hyst, but I would like one more child. I agree with you the pain is FIFTY times worse than childbirth. I also had a natural delivery, no meds 9pds 13oz and I would rather do that again than experience the month to month pains of endo! So FYI to all the Nurses please take our menstrual cramps complaints serious!
    On a lighter note this is one of the threads that I enjoy reading on a regular bases :chuckle !

    Mysister also has it. she has had 2 surgeries also.
  13. by   camano
    Quote from Gerilynn
    My own personal story..

    Last night took my son to the local "after hours doc in the box" with a temp of 105.4 rectal "he is 2". Temp has been going on for a couple days but couldn't get it down last night.
    Well at the minor emergency clinic we look him over for 2 hours can't find anything wrong with him. No UTI, red throat, cough, runny nose just really high fever. So Dr. tells me to have him to the local ER "just in case". I take him in and the nurse is rolling her eyes at me and seems bothered that I even was in the ER. I told her everything that the other Doc had done and said and she said "I guess he didn't think of a viral infection" and rolled her eyes again. So after 5 1/2 hours half a bag of fluids "he wouldn't eat or drink", blood culture, CBC, chest X-ray, the Dx is Pneumonia. Shot of Rocephin and a Rx for more antibiotics and we were on our way.
    So in your opinion was this a ridiculous thing to bring him in for? I didn't get a chance to talk to the first nurse again to see if her attitude changed any.
    I am still going my pre-nursing classes, so I don't know if pneumonia is a serious enough thing for ER. :imbar

    Thanks you all!! :imbar
    That nurse's rudeness and lack of compassion for your son is unexcusable. She judged your son's condition a little too quickly I think. I am also in nursing school and I know I'll never treat a patient the way you were treated! Last summer I had 2 kidney stones. The first one in my right kidney I passed without a problem after a trip to the ER, the second time it was in the left kidney. I went to the ER both times, was given some pain medication thru iv and other iv fluids, and then sent home as usual with a prescription, though the second time the attending physician was very hesitant to give me an RX for pain medication; I guess they thought I was a drug seeker because I had just been there a month before for the other kidney stone. Well the next night the pain was back, something unusual for me because usually the first time at the ER is usually sufficient and I pass the stone on my own at home. Well I went back to the ER, my mom drove me and I was in excruciating pain. The ER nurse told me while rolling her eyes that I shouldn't have come back and that I needed to try and pass it on my own. I would if I could haha! I waited in the ER waiting room for 3 hours while crying and throwing up because I wasn't taken seriously by that nurse. Turns out I was later admitted to the hospital and I had to have the stone surgically removed and a stent for 10 days because according to the doctor it would never have come out on its own because my left ureter is too small! :angryfire

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