Thursday, October 12, 2006

My 300 lb Migraine

Pain, I understand pain. I, myself, suffer from chronic migraines. I have suffered with them for years. They last for days and the Maxalt works but I have to take the max dose for the trhee, four days. I am supposed to take verapamil and amnitriptilyne (I know I just bitchered the spelling, but its the tricyclic, more bad spelling, anti-depression med)daily for them. I have even made many trips, myself, to the ER for migraines that seem to complaetly untouched by the meds I have at home to treat them. I also have had back surgery for two ruptured discs in my lumbar spine. So pain is something I understand. I always feel very bad for my chronic pain patients, whether its migraine pain, back pain, or leg pain. I have unbelievable symathy for these poor people. Some of these people truely suffer every single day of thier lives. But as much understanding I have for them, I find them the most frustrating. Some of them refuse to help themselves. Example: I was called to a migraine on a twenty-four year old female who was quite large (I'm talking 300+ lbs/136+ kgs) She has, like me, had long history of them. She was sprawled out supine on the living room floor right in the doorway of the apartment, in the dark. And she was SCREAMING...screaming obceneties, screaming nonsense words, just screaming. Her sister , who was holding her screaming daughter, was also yelling at me calling me a "racist white bitch" because I "Wasn't doing a damn thing" to help her sister and it was because "[the patient] was black, if she were white I would have brough th streatcher and would treat [the patient]". Now what I was doing was trying to calmly explain to [the patient] to quit holloring, it was just making her head hurt more, and that I needed for her to sit up so I could open the door to just get to her. But instead of helping me help her, just by sitting up, she just laid there fucking screaming. I literally could not open the front door more than a few inches. I tried to through the yelling to explain to her that I too have these type of headaches (and believe it or not, these are more than just a headache, migraines are a monster of a diffrent species) and that I would be happy to help her, but I needed her to just sit up, thats it, just sit up. Not stand, not walk, not jump up and down on one leg. I just wanted access to her so I could assess her. I just kept going "Ms D, Ms D, honey, you have got to sit up, I know your in pain, I know your head feels like someone is driving nails into it, but you have got to help me, you have got to sit up" Between Ms D and Ms D's sister I was developing a migraine. The only statement I hate more than "What's the worst thing you have every seen" is "you are treating me because I am [insert nationality here]" I don't give a damn if you a fucking day-glo green, I will treat you with respect regardless. Finally, she flung herself across the landing, but still lying on the nasty ass floor. I was fine with that, at least I could get the door open far enough for me to slip in. I got down on the floor to her level and queitly explained to her that I know what this pain feels like, but I needed her to get herslef, at least, up off the floor becasue there was no way that my little self could pick her up, she opened her eyes and sat up. I looked at my partner, who correctly read my look as "Call the Fire Dept for man power and Go get the gurney" My partner got the gurney and put in at the base of the four steps that were right outside the front door. Migraines are a head thing, so Her legs I know for a fact still worked. I explained to her that my bed is right outside the door, but because of her size, I needed her to ambulate about six feet to the waiting streatcher. By this time, I had quieted her down. She ablidged my request and I got her to her feet. As I am walking with her, she then all of a sudden collapses and because of her size I could not catch her. I then get an earful of more racist slurs from the sister. Damnit, I can't win for nothing. A crowd has now formed outside to the apartment door and I look like the bitch medic making the poor woman walk literally six feet down the four steps. Right after that the FD showed up and we picked her up and got her into the unit. Where her whole demeanor changes, she now refuses to answer any of my questions, like how long this has been going on and have you taken anything medication wise for it and what her birthdays is. SHe is giving me statements like "Just take me to the fucking hospital" and "You don;t need to know my birthday and SS number" I feel mt patience slippinf. I proceeded to sternly speak. "Ms D, I do know what this feels like, I get these migraines, but you are acting like a child. I can help you but you have got to help me help you, now what other medical history do you have?

Fuck. Thata was the most draining call I had had in a long while. I absoultly hate calls like this. I have to gather all of my restraint and compassion from deep within the core of my being just to keep my cool. So that I dont lose my shit. you have to help the medic sometimes. I did not make her walk because she was black, or because I am a mean and horrible medic. I made her ambualte because she could and I was not able to carry her. ABC also stands for Abulate before carry. I have already had my back fixed once, I might not be able to get if fixed again.


Anonymous said...

My default treatment of everyone is to treat he or she with respect. Some people go to great lengths to let me know they no longer want my respect. I always accommodate them. I am the first to admit how prejudiced I am; I am completely and utterly intolerant of assholes, no matter what color they be. In fact, assholism is the one true brotherhood which people of all races seem to have embraced.
As far a "Just take me to the hospital" goes...the truck doesn't move until I get all the information I want from the pt. I always tell them to be just as stubborn as they want...I'll wait.


Christopher said...

I'm equal opportunity here.. I tend to hate all stupid people equally. I am also of the belief that most people that call others racist tend to be the most racist of all. My 2 cents.

Mama Mia said...

What a PITA. I am always amazed by the drama, and wonder how they feel they are benefiting by putting on a show. Definitely ABC - you need your back for more than just your job!