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The other side of the curtain

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Specializes in Med/Surg, ICU, ER, Peds ER-CPEN. Has 13 years experience.

More of a vent thread but there's a shred of wisdom that can probably found in the following run on that I have to get out to people who understand it all lol After the past 18 months I am seriously considering banning my family from any and all physical activity! Let's back this bus up to the beginning. July 2013 my middle child (16) falls off a bike, it's a typical incident right? Nope, not for my kid! She managed to shove the ulna and radius half up the humerus and managed to have avulsion fractures both sides, our "lovely" local ED told me it was "only dislocated" and when I questioned wrist x-rays (mechanism of injury and all) and I was berated over the phone by the physician, luckily I work in a level 1 peds ED and she was in a level 3 with no peds ortho in the entire county so I was able to force a transfer. Well 4 hrs 1 plate, 5 screws and a pin to the wrist her arm was put back together. Nagged at me for a while why a simple fall could cause that much damage, fast forward 10 months. I noticed she was gaining weight in an odd way, and many other changes, while talking to a co-worker the light bulb went off, CUSHINGS! (with a vit D level 16, she's lucky she only tore up her elbow!) after many tests ding ding ding mom was a winner (Neurosurgeon actually introduced me to her new endocrine team as "and this is her mother who correctly diagnosed this" lmao). Had a large pituitary adenoma removed, had a rough go at the recovery phase for a week but is sailing along great now and is 6 weeks postop and almost off the steroids woohoo! 3 weeks ago I'm at work, hubby texts me that he's in an ER in OH and thinks he's passing a kidney stone. Calls back later says it isn't a stone but a bruise or muscle rupture (mind you there has been NO trauma??) I get home and read the CT report, most jacked up report I've ever seen, impression not matching with the unofficial read, red flags going off but he seems ok. 2 days later he's still in alot more pain than to be expected for a kidney stone so I drag him up to our Main ED, luckily we share clerk pool and PA pool so there were a few friendly faces. Of course the previous ED did not verify information correctly so we could not obtain the CT report or images via VPN so they decided to just do a new one. Since we're a level 1 teaching hospital a well known attending comes in with a few students to teach FAST and U/S techniques. While searching for the non existent stone they stumble across the "bruise" and said attending sucked in air and got quiet and mentioned he'd like to see the CT scan after it's done. Now I'm getting worried, off he goes to CT and we wait and wait for what feels like hours. The PA comes in (one I work with quite regularly and would trust with my children's lives)and shows us the CT report, it's not a bruise, it's an enlarged retro-peritoneal para-aortic lymph node. yep those buggers are a B***H to get to and generally point to testicular cancer (did I mention I have a knack for knowing the really weird Sh*t you almost never see?? yep that's me!) So the PA and 2 attendings then get the pleasure of feeling up poor hubby who at this point looks a wounded deer in the headlights. Nothing is felt but they follow through with the U/S, which I could go with him this time so I got to see the tumor before the docs, *oh joy* Now it's back to that tiny little room to wait some more, bright side of where I work is there is someone from EVERY specialty at all times so we met with urology that night. They do a few more blood tests and order a chest CT so they can schedule surgery. We are waiting and waiting some more, at this point we've been there 9 hours, we have children at home, I have to work the next day, I ask the nurse if she can speak to our new attending about doing the CT out patient the next afternoon. Apparently the new attending took over a crap storm and came in with all kinds of attitude. Told me that if we left now we would have to come back and start all over, ummm no pretty sure that's not how it works, her answer to that was "well you are one of 200 patients" pretty sure they all aren't having a scan and pretty darn sure they all haven't been diagnosed with cancer and then left in a little room to stew and wait. At this point I take matters into my own hands and page the urology attending myself, he calls be back almost instantly and is very apologetic (he also knows I'm an employee and not sure the snippy attending did as I don't normally advertise this lol) we do the CT scan the following afternoon, and the next afternoon hub said buh bye to the L testicle as it was not playing nice in the sandbox. We still have to meet with the oncology team about chemo to shrink the mass (praying this works because surgery to remove that bad boy lymph node is a real doozy!) Now I'm getting my notices that it's time to schedule my yearly, I'm thinking I need to wait until January and hope 2015 is our year! Still kind of simmering of the way the attending reacted to a rather simple request that ordering provider was in agreement with. Probably could have sent a strongly worded email of my displeasure and gotten a cookie cutter copy-paste apology lol I do feel kind of bad that the PA had to deliver the news, it sucks having to do that in general but I think it would be harder when it's someone I know, but I'm glad it was him because of the trust we already have in place.

SmilingBluEyes

Specializes in Specializes in L/D, newborn, GYN, LTC, Dialysis. Has 24 years experience.

Pretty hard to read this , as it's one long paragraph. Could you break it up a bit to make it more readable?

ZooMommyRN, ADN, RN

Specializes in Med/Surg, ICU, ER, Peds ER-CPEN. Has 13 years experience.

It was in paragraphs and reformatted itself whenn posting since I'm using my phone, so sorry to have inconvenienced you....

HouTx, BSN, MSN, EdD

Specializes in Critical Care, Education. Has 35 years experience.

You're the bomb! Your family is so lucky to have you on their side.

Karou

Specializes in Med-Surg. Has 1 years experience.

I skimmed through and tried to read all of this, paragraphs would help a lot.

I am so sorry your husband was diagnosed with cancer, and you had to encounter someone with such awful bedside manner. Who tells a new dx. cancer patient that they are "one of 200 patients"?!? That is awful and I can't imagine how terrible that made your husband feel. That doctor needs a lesson on bedside manner.

When my mother was diagnosed, at least she had family with her and I am grateful it was NOT in a hospital setting. It breaks my heart when I get new dx. cancer patients on my med surg floor. Several of them have told me how blunt/cold the news was given to them in the ED. Most came in with complaints that they would never imagine were caused by tumors/masses/cancer. I hate it that I am one nurse for five patients on those days.

I am glad your husband has you, a nurse, to advocate for him and be there with him. Prayers and thoughts for your family!

ZooMommyRN, ADN, RN

Specializes in Med/Surg, ICU, ER, Peds ER-CPEN. Has 13 years experience.

I didn't realize how many times cancer is diagnosed in the ER, most pediatric cancers are and my heart sinks everytime a patient with cc of abnormal labs pops up on the board

Karou

Specializes in Med-Surg. Has 1 years experience.

I didn't realize how many times cancer is diagnosed in the ER, most pediatric cancers are and my heart sinks everytime a patient with cc of abnormal labs pops up on the board

It breaks my heart every single time.

Recently had a young patient, very fit and healthy, get diagnosed with leukemia. I took care of him for several shifts and watched him go back and forth through the grieving process. I never cry in front of patients, but I did I front of him. He broke down because his young daughter was asking questions... He didn't want to tell her.

I also have had too many patients with breast ca return and mets. Every single time, I think of my mother. It doesn't start to bother me until I get home because I able to separate my personal life from work, but when it does get to me it hits me very hard.

firstinfamily, RN

Has 33 years experience.

Wow!!! Sounds like you need to quarantine your family to keep anything else from happening. The bedside manner of the attending needs to improve, if he/she treated you like that I wonder how he/she comes across to other patients. Sometimes being the nurse in the family sucks and other times it is the best ever, especially when you make a difference in how the treatment occurs. We always seek the better outcomes for our patients and our families. It does make one wonder how the rest of the public get through it all when they do not have an advocate in the healthcare field!!! Hang in there!!! When life gives you lemons, make lemonaide!! Good Luck with everything!

ZooMommyRN, ADN, RN

Specializes in Med/Surg, ICU, ER, Peds ER-CPEN. Has 13 years experience.

Pretty sure life gave me limes so pass the tequila!