Friday, 16 March 2012

Part 2a: My hospital stay in the AMU - Deep Vein Thrombosis


So, when we left I was sitting in the AMU clinic 'admission centre' which actually just turns out to be the corridor because for some reason they were extraordinarily busy, typical. My ambulance crew are still being fantastic they've signed me in, got me water, let me keep the laughing gas and are still keeping me entertained whilst I'm waiting for the doctor.

Hospital Admission

About half an hour later I'm transported to a hospital trolley via a patslide (that had to be the most painful transition yet as they had to roll me onto my left hand side putting great pressure on the clot) and questioned by the doctor. There was one good thing that happened whilst all this was going on, the nurse who so easily dismissed me on Monday was taken aside and reprimanded by the Sister (head nurse) for not doing her job properly.

But guess what, that very same nurse had to be the one who was going to take my blood, and let me just say it had to be one of the worst experiences of my life. She went digging around in veins, had me screaming in pain and crying like I had never done before. It took her 15 attempts to even get a drop of blood out of me (I'm not even sure if she was allowed that many attempts as they normally have three and get someone else to have a go) and then left me bruised and battered to get a specialist from hematology to have a go. Unfortunately he was not successfully in getting blood either but was a lot nicer and really gentle so in comes the doctor. Here was my golden ray of light, she let me calm down first of all and explained that she was going to get me some morphine for pain. When she came back I had my morphine and she started to prepare her needles etc. and then took my hand. A couple of minutes later I looked down at my hand and there was a cannula (a small tube inserted so that it can be used for drips) sitting there as well as four vials of my blood sitting in the tray - now why couldn't she have come in to do this in the first place? I'm left to rest up, have my Clexane injections and given regular morphine whilst they run tests on my blood.

Time for Sleep

Around 10.30pm after a massive struggle with dinner (i had no appetite but felt really weak from not eating all day) I'm told that I'll have to be admitted to the hospital but they don't know how long for. It's now time for another bed transfer from the trolley to a very welcoming bed but I did it under my own steam this time, bed to wheelchair to bed. The lovely night nurse helped me get into my nightie and then started hooking me up to an ECG machine, blood pressure and heart rate monitor and also a machine that measured my oxygen levels as they were dropping as well. Put it this way, I did not get a good nights sleep as the nurses had to check my temperature and the machines every two hours, the pain killers also wore off and I kept needing more.

After a Rough Night and a Ray of Hope?

Morning comes around and it's time for the ops round again (where they check the machines, give meds etc). I managed to have an orange juice for breakfast and get wheeled to the bathroom so that I can have a freshen up. The day goes by pretty much the same as night time but in the mid afternoon I get a visit from the physiotherapy department how have a pair of crutches with them. My hopes of going home early were lifted when they said that if I could walk and get up a flight of stairs I could go home! However, when it came to the stairs I was in so much pain - even through the morphine - that I could only manage 4 steps.

Disappointed I went back to my bed were my doctors turned up and said that I was moving to a respiratory ward, not because of the asthma, but because they suspected that a bit of the clot had travelled up to my lungs which was causing my oxygen stats to be so low - this is known as a pulmonary embolism. So off I went further into the hospital hooked up to yet another machine, this one to provide me with oxygen.

See here for Part 2b: My trip to the High Dependency Unit
Part 1

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