Monday, April 30, 2012

No Cure for This

Cripes: "What's wrong with this guy?"
Me: "Man-cold".
Cripes (singing falsetto to the tune Maneater) "Ohhh, here he comes, it's a Maaaaaaan Coooooold!"

Right.  It can practically be diagnosed from the parking lot and seems to be a phenomenon that has bearers of the XY chromosome dragging themselves out of their death bed in the evening hours.  It is universally accepted that the symptoms will have been present for.....a day.  Maybe.  Man-cold is emergent and debilitating.  Females who accompany Man-cold to the ER are either disgusted with their companions, or complete morons who also drag 3 or 4 dirty unruly kids who also have Man-cold, the Disney edition.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

No Soup for You

I had spent  what seemed like hours at the beck and call of an elderly couple.  The wife was being treated for vague complaints; the husband was feisty, and was not happy to be in the ER.  He followed me out of the room EVERY TIME to ask another question or to make another demand / request.  There were  several "one more thing to tell the doctor" and "I remembered something else".  I had  toileted, watered, warm blanketed, repositioned, explained the monitor, apologized for the tightness of the blood pressure cuff, and given them 3 vomit sacks (although she was not, in fact, vomiting).  When he wasn't hounding me, the husband was on the phone loudly proclaiming to his friends / neighbors / family / distant cousins how much time had elapsed since they had entered the ER.

It was the middle of the afternoon although they had only been in the department for  two hours.  Another exhausting Q and A session concluded thus:

Husband (snippy): "So, are you going to be serving us dinner?"
Me (apologetically):  "Oh, no; I'm sorry, we don't have any food service here, I'm sure I explained that"
Husband (more snippy than before):  "I was really just wondering if we were going to be here long enough to require dinner"
Me (innocently):  "Yes sir, I understand sarcasm".

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Sure-Fire Ways to Annoy Me

1.  Always ask if there have been any deaths lately, and if so, if there have been any dead bodies on the stretcher you now occupy.
2.  Before you have even been examined, ask for 6 warm blankets, footies, a cab voucher home, the head of the bed elevated at precisely 45 degrees, Coca-cola (not that generic cola crap) with  the straw bent and most, but not all, of the bubbles swished out.
3.  Insist that when you Googled your insignificant ankle twist in the 20 minutes since you injured it that it appears to be at least a "Grade 2" sprain.
4.  Ask me about my squirrel.  Go on.  I dare you.
5.  By all means ask for your IV fluids, which you do not need, to be heated to 98.6 degrees so you "won't get brain freeze"
6.  Continuously refer to yourself in the 3rd person.
7.  Make a comment about how glad you are that you came in on a "quiet" night.
8.  Tell me how bad your veins are when I come in to draw your blood, especially if they are fu*ing pipelines that could easily sustain the biggest IV in the box.  If you really want to piss me off, tell me how "they" tried to get your IV last time and it took 9 tries and gave you a bruise the size of a sofa pillow.
9.  Ask for sandwiches, cocoa, coloring books, and stickers for your filthy, unruly brood at 11 PM when you are here for your refill of Percocet.
10.  Keep sending your little wild animals out to inquire about how much longer the wait will be.
11.  Insist that "we" have your records
12.  Also insist that I should call Dr. Q to get your medication list.
13.  If you think that standing in the doorway of your room and glaring at me because you don't think you are getting enough attention for your dental pain is intimidating, you are mistaken.  You are a colossal failure in that department
14.  Sorry, I'm busy with an Actual Sick Person right now and coordinating things like ICU beds and ambulance transfers.  Your door is staying  closed because you are a distraction and the goings-on in other rooms is none of your business
15.  Absolutely allow your sullen teen with the urgent ankle pain/headache/dry skin to be on the phone when I am triaging.