The Trip to ER

The day after I messed up my finger, I had to be encouraged by my sister to get it checked out by my doctor. She had a good point; I had to know if I broke my finger .or not. My doctor’s office could not fit me in until the next week.. They said i should go to Urgent Care.

I had my PA call Urgent Care, to verify that they took my insurance, they did.  Next my PA asked if we could borrow a van from Community Inclusion.  Since it was both the end of the day, and my PA said I had Hurt my finger and needed to have it checked out,  we got the van.  We got to Urgent Care.  Gave them my insurance  info, and was just settling in to fill  out the  paperwork.  We were stopped  about 30 seconds later.   Turns out Urgent Care could not help me because,   I am covered by two insurances.   They said I should go to ER.   As I was exiting the building I exclaimed that it was B S! For once, I hoped they understood my sediments,  because I was in pain, and all I wanted was to be helped!

Fifteen minutes later, we arrived at ER.  I was checked in, ushered into the intake room to the right of the the reception desk, where they got a better idea of what my problem was, and took my vitals.  I dislike having my blood pressure taken.  My CP kicks  into overdrive and makes it sometimes hard to get a clear reading .  Well, my body was exceptionally tweaked out on this day, and before the nurse was satisfied with a reading, my arm must have been squeezed at least five times.   I thought my arm was going to pop  before the ordeal was over.  I was relieved when the cuff finally came off, and I was released  to the waiting room.

Thirty to forty minutes later, I was ushered into an exam room, where I waited another twenty or thirty minutes. At long last, the ER doctor came waltzing in. Of course, he took one look at my finger and said he wanted three x-rays taken. I groaned. a flashback into childhood, and being taped down to the x-ray table to help me stay still set me farther on edge.  As tensed as my left arm and hand were, getting decent e-rays would be a pain in the rear!

I wished my sister was with me. She’s the only person that knows how to get me to relax. What’s more, she knows how to get my wrist to relax. The x-ray experience would have been a snap if she were there.

Twenty  or thirty  minutes later, the x-ray technician came to escort me to his domain. After my communication device was removed from my power chair, and a lead apron was added to my attire;  the x-ray dude tried to place my left hand on the  exposure table. My hand was curled up in my wrist, and when my finger hit the table a jolt of pain shot through it.

He told me to extend my wrist. My PA explained that would not be possible.  it was like he didn’t hear or understood her, for he kept on asking me to extend my wrist. It reminded me of the times when my dad told me repeatedly to relax.  I would swear each time he said relax his eyes grew larger as if he could will my body into submission, which irritated me to no end!

Finally I felt like I had to show the dude that I understood him. I extended my right wrist. His eyes grew large with hope, and he asked me if that was the hand that my injured finger was on. I said no in as flat of a tone as I could muster. However, I am sure my eyes were flashing fire.  (I have been told on occasion that my eyes can shoot off a number of evil looks. I guess it’s a family trait I am blessed with).

Funny, x-ray dude became creative after that.   He found a foam wedge to rest my hand on.  As my PA was stabilizing my arm with just a touch of her hand, and while I was taking deep breaths, x-ray was happily doing his job.  unfortunately, he could not get a clear image of the tip of my finger,     which at times hurts more then the knuckle. X-ray dude walked us back to the exam room.

Another Nurse came in and took my vitals, again.  I wanted to say, “Yep, I am still alive, can’t we just leave it at that!   Twenty  minutes later,  the doctor was back before me.  He said the finger was not broken.  I had just sprang it badly.  He was not going to  splint it up, because he thought my body fight against it.  I thought he just didn’t want to go through the hassle of casting my hand. I think if my sister had been there, she could have argued the point, and won. I have no idea how my hand would have taken to the cast, but I would like to think that it would have relaxed given time.

I ask you, did I go through all that hassle for nothing? At least, I know my finger is not broken, and I am giving you all a good glimpse of what a person with a disability goes through to get health care.  I think there is a burning question here.  Like,  how much training does the medical community as a whole have in caring for people who have disabilities?

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