teal's Blog

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life on the med floor


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i think the hardest part of my hospital stay was the four weeks after i got out of the neuro observation unit - i was transferred, a week after the stroke, to a medical/surgical unit - it was frustrating having to ring and ask the nurses to roll me over or change my position every few hours, especially since every time i did they'd say i had to wait cause they needed help, i also really hated all the bathroom stuff.... why do educated nurses, talking to adult patients, feel the need to talk about "pee pee" and "poo poo" rather than using the real words ? and while i'm in gripe mode... why does every unit have at least one patient that refuses to push the nurse button and instead just lies in bed calling "nurse..." "nurse..." all night ? and then there was the roommate that moaned all night, not to mention the one that would wait till five min before the end of whatever show i was watching to channel surf... or the one who needed the spanish language channel on all night long.... as long as they had me as a captive, my dr's tested me for everything under the sun... they told me i was hypothyroid, needed a sleep study for apnea, and needed a biopsy of a growth under my ear, also that i had some kidney damage from my bp having been so high... the sleep study was on hold because they weren't set up to do them on people that were in-patient and couldn't get up to their lab, they said that the biopsy appeared to be benign;but it was still important to have the growth removed;but the surgery would have to wait till 6 months after the stroke - i hadn't yet recovered anything and they started talking about sending me to a snf, then one of the dr's suggested inpatient rehab instead, that sounded like a much more promising choice to me; but i needed to be approved before they'd take me - a group of rehab dr's came up and decided i didn't have enough movement yet so turned me down, so i stayed where i was.... i did get pt and ot, though, although only a half hour a day combined which was mostly spent teaching me how to get on/off the wheelchair... and to think, it only took three of them, a platform, sliding board and 15 min to accomplish it, well, at least it was a change of viewpoint - they rigged up a standing frame equivalent on the end of my bed - had a really hard time putting weight on the weak leg when they asked me to, cause i couldn't feel it - kind of like the reverse of phantom limb pain that amputees get, they have no legs;but feel like its there, mine was there;but felt like it was missing.... every week, the rehab team would come back, and every time turn me down;but i kept trying.... i used to just lay there thinking "thumb, thumb, thumb" and trying to move it, one day it moved about a half an inch, i had every nurse on the floor in to watch my "parlor trick" - couple days later i managed to move my index finger, just a little, i managed one small addition to my repertroire almost every day, every shift change the nurses would all stop by to see what new i could do - really small steps;but it kept me motivated;but still rehab kept saying no... next time: bad news/setback - good news/hope.....

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TEAL,

 

AND JUST THINK, YOU'RE PAYING FOR ALL THIS FRIVOLITY! WHEN THEY SHIPPED ME TO THE REHAB FLOOR, I WAS PUT IN A ROOM WITH AN AMPUTEE, DIABETIC MAN WHO ALSO SUFFERED A STROKE. HE HAD A BIG FAMILY AND THEY SHOWED UP FROM NOON UNTIL 8PM. ONE DAY WAS ALL I COULD TAKE.

 

I NOSED AROUND THE FLOOR AND FOUND A PRIVATE ROOM WAS BECOMING AVAILABLE THAT AFTERNOON. I STALKED THE ROOM UNTIL IT WAS EMPTY. THEN I JUST SAT IN MY WHEELCHAIR IN THE ROOM UNTIL IT WAS CLEANED. ABOUT 4 HOURS. THE NURSE THOUGHT I WAS CRAZY (i am), BUT I TOLD HER IF SHE WANTED ME TO GET BETTER AND HAD MY WELL-BEING AT HEART, SHE WOULD LET ME STAY. ALSO, SHE USED TO GET ME DRESSED SOME MORNING AND I TOLD HER SHE WOULD LOSE THE PRIVILEDGE.

 

WHAT A DIFFERENCE. AT FIRST MY WIFE GAVE ME "HELL" FOR PULLING THE STUNT. I BLAMED IT ON MY INABILITY TO THINK STRAIGHT BECAUSE OF THE STROKE.

 

MARTY smile.gif

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Teal, I feel like I'm reading a novel, and somebody takes it away before I can get to the next chapter!!

 

Hospitals can be "challenging" (nice word, huh?), to say the least. There are as many stories as there are those reading these posts - and you have a way of capturing all our experiences!!

 

Keep up the great work......and post soon PLEASE!

 

Ann

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