I work on a short stay unit so the bulk of our patients are coming to recover from minor surgical, GI and interventional radiology procedures and then we send them on their merry way once they are walking, talking, peeing and not crying in pain.
One of the frustrating things about working on this unit is that the attending doctors who do the procedures are often unwilling to deal with situations that arise that aren't directly related to the procedure they have performed and they often refuse to consult with the hospitalist teams.
For instance: yesterday I had a patient who had a minor interventional radiology procedure. I called the MD because the patient's BP was in the 90s to 200s systolic and the patient c/o headache, dizziness, etc. He adamantly declined to treat it and told me to "keep an eye on it; it's just pain-related". I kept an eye on it for the next 4 hours and it got progressively worse. Even though the pt's pain improved, the BP did not and the headache and dizziness grew more acute.
I called the MD again and got the on-call who tore me several new ones for bothering them with this again. His exact words "Why are you calling about this again?She is on two anti-hypertensives already; what are you asking- for us to give her more and have her bottom out?" My reply (as my face is growing tomato-red and I am struggling to maintain compsure) was "I'm calling because this is a reportable symptom and is cause for concern. I am doing my job and keeping you updated on the patient's condition." He was rude and told me not to call again and to make a note for others not to call about it.
As I was angrily writing a note quoting the exact words of the MD he sheepishly called back twice both times asking me what we would normally give in this situation. I told him I do not feel comfortable advising about cardiac meds and told him I would be happy to find out who the hospitalist on duty is. He finally agreed, thankfully and I gave report to the next nurse, amended my note, and went home to a much-needed beer.
Any of you have similar issues when dealing with specialists?