Category Archives: ER

Pain in Paradise

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NCH ER is an excellent place to visit when you need emergent care in SW Florida.

Pain. So much pain.

“Follow me” they say.

She does her best to keep up.

She sits, they take blood and insert the IV.

They walk away telling her to stay there for a few minutes.

Back out to the waiting room to wait for a room to become available.

Time to follow them again.

So hard to keep up. They are quick and she hurts. The pain is excruciating.

She does her best to keep up, shuffling along.

She sits on the ER bed. Wow! It’s soft and comfortable. Maybe now she can relax just a little.

But the pain. Sharp, stabbing, radiating into her whole abdomen. She can’t get comfortable. Nothing helps.

More people come in. Time to go to ultrasound. That shouldn’t be bad, she thinks.

Oh, they poke and prod into her ribs, into her abdomen, into the pain. Damn this pain. “Take a deep breath and hold it”, she’s told again and again. She’s told, “stop breathing…now breathe”. The only words from the woman in olive green scrubs with the blonde ponytail. Does she have a name?

In her little room again she finally goes. Her daughter is there at last. Now she’s not alone. Thank God she’s no longer by herself.

Next, vitals. Her nurse is lovely. She’s from Ohio. And her doctor wants a CT scan. They found something on her pancreas. Her heart sinks. She’s now in pain and so frightened.

To CT scan she is whisked away, but after she has pain medication. Ah, pain meds. They hit her head fast and she is somewhere far from here. They could do anything now. She’s sleepy and silly.

She moves to the big slab that enters the donut, aka CT machine. They place her arms above her head. She is comfy! They inject contrast into her veins. The sensation is strangely warming, EVERYWHERE!

In moments she is taken back to her little room to await the results. She is so afraid, but the feeling is overshadowed by goofiness because of the pain medicine.

Her daughter laughs at her antics and asks her questions. She makes a grammatical error and corrects herself which makes her daughter laugh. She puts a tiny rubberband on her nose just because she can. Her daughter takes a picture. Wow! This stuff is wild! She’s so tired but can’t sleep because the doctor will be coming

He enters with news. Pancreatic cyst, pseudocyst or cancer. The question is raised as to where to follow up? She is just here for a week. She will follow up at home.

The physical pain is gone for now, but has been replaced by emotional pain. She will call her husband. She needs his love and support as much as she needs her daughter’s right now.

With prescriptions in hand, She leaves with her daughter. Shocked and saddened but relieved to have a diagnosis at last. The hurt in her heart is a heavy burden but her family are her strength and will help her see this through.