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A Headache is not an emergency

Emergency   (28,813 Views | 153 Replies)
by Patient4life Patient4life (Member)

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Rose_Queen has 15 years experience as a BSN, MSN, RN and specializes in OR, education.

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Where I go to the doctor, sometimes it's four or five days. And with the way some health insurance plans are, it's cheaper to go to the ER than to the doc in the box.

Same here. I had a really nasty double ear infection with a sinus infection. My PCP could't see me for 2-3 days. I was spiking a temp so high that I was delirious- apparently, I called my mother sobbing like a child begging for her to come take care of me. I have absolutely no memory of having done this. Fortunately my copay for the urgent care was affordable- and she got me there right before they closed. If I were still in my hometown where there is no such thing as an urgent care, you bet your bippy I would have been in the ER if I couldn't be seen for several days.

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OrganizedChaos has 10 years experience as a LVN and specializes in M/S, LTC, Corrections, PDN & drug rehab.

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If you had it " for awhile" it should have addressed elsewhere than the Er...we can argue back and forth but this misuse of our medical system when compiled all together is a huge issue. I'm glad your earache was addressed ....I just wish you had used a non-acute modality to do it.

I never knew there were rules to use the ER. If you don't like your job, I'm sorry & maybe you should look into a different one.

When I went the other night there wasn't anyone in the ER & I wasn't taking up valuable time.

Yes I had the pain for awhile but it wasn't worth addressing until last night, on a Friday when my doctor was closed. I thought I just had a sore throat & it would go away, I was wrong.

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Well I guess since I have had the throat/ear pain for awhile & was prescribed an antibiotic, the doctor felt differently.

I'll let you in on a little secret. Lots of doctors just follow the path of least resistance. ;-)

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MaxAttack has 3 years experience and specializes in CCRN/Critical Care.

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Settling in for this thread. I have pizza tonight! :up:

Hawaiian! Or buffalo chicken sounds good right now. My pizza addiction is going to catch up with me one day..

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Glycerine82 has 4 years experience as a ASN, LPN and specializes in SNF/Rehab/Geri.

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I took my husband directly to the ER with a migraine. He was vomiting out the window the entire way there and kept a jacket over his head in the waiting room because the lights hurt so bad. We'd tried everything. Tylenol, ibuprofen, immitrex....you name it

IV dilaudid (which he had never had before) took it away and I was so thankful for that ER staff for taking him seriously.

He said it feels like brain freeze, only for hours and hours on end. Ugh! Can't imagine.

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LadyFree28 has 10 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in Pediatrics, Rehab, Trauma.

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I took my husband directly to the ER with a migraine. He was vomiting out the window the entire way there and kept a jacket over his head in the waiting room because the lights hurt so bad. We'd tried everything. Tylenol, ibuprofen, immitrex....you name it

IV dilaudid (which he had never had before) took it away and I was so thankful for that ER staff for taking him seriously.

He said it feels like brain freeze, only for hours and hours on end. Ugh! Can't imagine.

Or even worse...it feels like having a stroke; my worst migraines have facial droop, slurring blurred vision and aphasia; I have seen it in the pts that come through as well; we take migraines seriously enough that they are Level 3s-they are never classified as urgent when they have serious symptoms.

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OrganizedChaos has 10 years experience as a LVN and specializes in M/S, LTC, Corrections, PDN & drug rehab.

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I'll let you in on a little secret. Lots of doctors just follow the path of least resistance. ;-)

I have gone to the same ER when I had an ovarian cyst, was in so much pain I could barely walk but the cyst didn't rupture & was slightly too small to take out. I was discharged with nothing, not a pain med or anything. Not that I wanted pain meds, I wanted the damn cyst out.

That may be true for the doctors you know, but they haven't done that here. This hospital is known to do as very little as they can.

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Scrubs_n_sirens has 6 years experience as a MSN, RN and specializes in Flight Nursing, Emergency, Forensics, SANE, Trauma.

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I have hemiplegic migraines that present like strokes. It starts as a headache and nothing else and progresses to hemiplegia. I

Obviously I'm a different story but people will always go to the ED for nonemergent stuff. No use getting upset about it because until healthcare as a whole changes, it'll stay that way.

Edited by Scrubs_n_sirens

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kbrn2002 has 25 years experience as a ADN, RN and specializes in Geriatrics, Dialysis.

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Sure, a headache isn't an emergency...except when it is. An OTA I used to work with had an extreme headache at work. 10 minutes later she passed out briefly and was sent to the ER. Turns out she had an aneurysm that burst. She lived just long enough for her husband and three children to get to the hospital and say goodbye.

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Pixie.RN has 12 years experience as a MSN, RN, EMT-P and specializes in EMS, ED, Trauma, CNE, CEN, CPEN, TCRN.

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I have gone to the same ER when I had an ovarian cyst, was in so much pain I could barely walk but the cyst didn't rupture & was slightly too small to take out. I was discharged with nothing, not a pain med or anything. Not that I wanted pain meds, I wanted the damn cyst out.

You know they don't do that in an ED, right? :)

And just because we don't like improper use of the ED doesn't mean we don't like our jobs. I'm trained to save lives, but I don't necessarily want to do that every minute of every day. Some days I welcome stable patients! lol.

Many EDs have fast track areas for low acuity/should have gone to primary care/could have stayed home patients. That is done in deference to the population's needs to be seen immediately for non-urgent health issues. And those are the people that typically have to wait the longest, and sometimes complain the loudest too. I'm glad their lungs are working well. :)

I understand why people come to the ED for acute pain issues — we all know it's difficult to function if you're in pain, and you want it to stop. Non-healthcare people aren't expected to know why they are having acute pain, so I don't put that on them. Let the medical peeps sort that out.

Bottom line, I am kind to everyone, because kindness is free — even if you're trying to use resources for non-acute issues. I know how to allocate my resources so that the sickest are seen quickest! :D

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OrganizedChaos has 10 years experience as a LVN and specializes in M/S, LTC, Corrections, PDN & drug rehab.

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You know they don't do that in an ED, right? :)

And just because we don't like improper use of the ED doesn't mean we don't like our jobs. I'm trained to save lives, but I don't necessarily want to do that every minute of every day. Some days I welcome stable patients! lol.

Many EDs have fast track areas for low acuity/should have gone to primary care/could have stayed home patients. That is done in deference to the population's needs to be seen immediately for non-urgent health issues. And those are the people that typically have to wait the longest, and sometimes complain the loudest too. I'm glad their lungs are working well. :)

I understand why people come to the ED for acute pain issues — we all know it's difficult to function if you're in pain, and you want it to stop. Non-healthcare people aren't expected to know why they are having acute pain, so I don't put that on them. Let the medical peeps sort that out.

Bottom line, I am kind to everyone, because kindness is free — even if you're trying to use resources for non-acute issues. I know how to allocate my resources so that the sickest are seen quickest! :D

I know they don't remove cysts in the ER, but if the OR could take walk ins I would've gone straight in. [emoji6]

They have a fast track at the ER but since it was 11 at night they just took me back & spent all 30 minutes on me.

When you live in a small town, don't have money, can't go to a walk in clinic & can't wait on your doctor the ER is the best bet.

I use to think the same way but Medicaid isn't accepted everywhere (minute clinics) like most insurances are & the doctors in my town are always over booked. I don't judge people any more because I have been in their shoes.

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Pixie.RN has 12 years experience as a MSN, RN, EMT-P and specializes in EMS, ED, Trauma, CNE, CEN, CPEN, TCRN.

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I know they don't remove cysts in the ER, but if the OR could take walk ins I would've gone straight in.

That actually made me LOL. Seriously. Could you imagine a world with walk-in ORs? :D We could open a chain, call it Jiffy OR or Speedy-ectomy.

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