Friday, June 5, 2015

I woke up at 2:35 a.m. screaming in horrific pain.  The VA Telenurse told me to call an ambulance. You do not go to Valley Baptist ER knowing you need surgery unless you have absolutely no choice.  A family member nearly died several months ago because of the incompetence of the ER doctor, the doctor assigned to the family member, and the surgeon on call. I believe it was nearly two weeks after being admitted and after the family member had an Afib event and was moved to MICU, that the attending in MICU finally allowed for the surgeon of choice and cardiologist to see the family member.  For nearly two weeks every request was ignored.  He had bowel obstruction and required emergency surgery. They left him on an IV starving for nearly two weeks before their hand was forced.
I have a surgeon of choice.  The same who did my family member bowel resection.  So I took 2 extra strength Tylenol and in about 30 minutes the pain was tolerable.
Last night at 9:41 p.m. my PC was still at the VA working and called me to tell me she had just completed the paperwork for the emergency referral for surgery.  The problem was she did not have anything from the specialist who was referring me for surgery.  His comment to me was odd - he knows I do not have a gallbladder but he said "you need to have your gallbladder out immediately."  I just assumed he was joking because we both know the cystic duct is now the size of the gallbladder.  He assured me he was going to call my PC yesterday and send over the request for emergency surgery.
Well since yesterday his staff has been unable to communicate with him to write the request for the VA.  This morning the VA verified for me the paperwork was complete and ready to be faxed to the surgeon for an emergency referral for surgery as he determined.  We are in the dark as to what the other specialist is requesting. As of 4 p.m. today the surgeon's office had received nothing from the VA or the referring specialist.  No one can seem to contact the referring specialist to have him prepare the request .  So I spent the day in horrible pain and a low grade fever.
Then at 4 p.m. the surgeon of choice had his staff tell me he would not do the surgery because I needed to go back to the surgeon who took out the gallbladder 4 years ago.  The only problem with that is, he now works in Houston harvesting organs for transplant.
They also told me no surgeon would touch me without the original surgical notes.  Well those I have and it was today it all came together when I read them.
From the surgeon:
Remember the problem is the cystic duct.
"The cystic duct really could not be identified at all.  I thought I saw the bile duct.  So, I essentially transected the gallbladder at what I thought was the gallbladder cystic duct junction as I was not sure how close the common duct was."
If the mind numbing pain comes again tonight my roommate will take me to Valley Baptist.  I will then be stuck with doctors chosen by Valley Baptist.  This is the worse case scenario.  But since as of 4 p.m. I have no surgeon and a missing doctor, I have no choice.
While I am not happy with having to allow Valley Baptist to choose my surgeon, I am not sure after being treated the way I was yesterday and today by these two other doctors I want to allow them to provide care.  The surgeon could have called his peer who works in the same building and asked what is going on.  He was unwilling to do this.
It seems to me that once a doctor is told their patient is being sent to the ER the least they can do is tell that patient why they need surgery.  His staff simply did not care.  It was the same excuse every time I called and the VA called - he is unavailable and he cannot be reached.  He left no surgical notes for his staff or entered any at VB after yesterday's failed procedure.  Apparently even for emergencies when he is at the hospital he is not to be bothered.  The surgeon had he cared could have had him located at Valley Regional.
Yea, in the morning at about 3 a.m. when the ER calls and wakes him up to find out why he is recommending surgery, he will think about the consequences of abandoning a patient he is claiming needs emergency surgery.
Back to bed - I cannot even hold down water - I just sip - it makes me want to vomit - but you have to stay hydrated so I am sipping as much as possible.  The reflux is the worse burning reflux I have ever had.  I have no way of knowing if it is bile or acid reflux.  Gaviscon which always works, after 20 so far today I have no relief.

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