Doctors, nurses, and staying healthy

Not Allergic To A Sunny Disposition!

, , , , , | Healthy | April 21, 2021

I have a blood disorder called EPP; basically, I’m allergic to the sun. I’m sitting in a tent on the beach to shelter myself. Two girls who look about fourteen or fifteen see me — age ten — with my gloves, sunscreen, and huge sun hat.

Girl #1: “Hi. Why are you in a tent?”

Girl #2: “Yeah, can’t you just go inside?”

Me: “My family is here; I don’t wanna just leave. The sun and I aren’t friends.”

Girl #1: “Well, why are you wearing gloves in a tent? Go outside!”

Me: “I’m allergic.”

Girl #2: “To going outside? That’s dumb.”

Me: “No! I’m allergic to the sun.”

Both girls are starting to get annoyed, even though I’m not lying and they are the ones who decided to talk to me.

Girl #1: “That’s not a real allergy.”

Girl #2: “Yeah, stop lying!” 

Me: “It is real, and I’m just glad you don’t have it.” 

I went back to playing with my little cards and they walked away.

After that, my mom kept telling me that story because she thought it was really nice how I didn’t actually react in an aggressive way. Even though they were being rude I didn’t wish my allergy on them. I know some people are dealing with some crazy allergies; you aren’t alone!

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A Most Unreceptive Receptionist, Part 10

, , , , | Healthy | April 21, 2021

When I was almost nineteen years old, I moved to Iceland to try to work there. I had gotten the job prior to moving, so that and living quarters were not an issue. The job was as an uneducated gardener, so some of it was physical-labour intensive — digging and moving heavy stuff. It was nothing too bad, but as this was very new to me, I did find some new muscles.

One day, about three weeks after I had started, I noticed that my wrist was hurting very badly, every time I tried to use any equipment, light or heavy. Since I had some small problems with my wrist years before, I wanted to get it checked by a doctor to see if it just needed rest or something more.

As I was in a new country, I didn’t understand the local language too well, so I wasn’t sure where to find a healthcare center. Luckily, there was one close to my working area, so I went there to ask them how to get help.

I waited patiently in the queue, and when it was my turn, I asked politely if we could have the conversation in English. The receptionist started to huff, but she did reply in English.

Me: “My wrist is hurting, and I would like to know if someone could take a look at it. Since I haven’t been to a doctor in Iceland before, could you please tell me how I book a time with one?”

Receptionist: *Huffs in anger* “You cannot just walk in here and expect a doctor to just see you! You need to book a time!”

I was very confused, since that’s exactly what I asked for help with.

Me: “Well, yes, that’s what I’m planning on. I’m not expecting a doctor right now, but I just want to know how to book a time. I’ve never done that in Iceland before. Could you help me?”

Receptionist: *Still huffing in anger* “You need to call in order to book at time! This is not how you do it!” *Starts to look at some papers*

Me: *Lost for words* “But… I’m trying to do exactly that. How do I—”

Receptionist: *Cuts me off* “Here! Take this paper and fill it out. Give it back afterward.”

I was very confused, but the papers were in English, so I could fill them out. Afterward, I went back to the receptionist, since I thought maybe now I could get the info I needed.

Me: “Here is the paper. What now?”

Receptionist: *Still clearly annoyed* “Sit down over there. A doctor will take you as soon as possible.”

Me: *Very confused* “But… I did not mean…”

By now, the receptionist was just glaring at me, so I couldn’t do anything else but sit down and wait. Some fifteen or twenty minutes later, a door next to me opened and a doctor asked me to come in.

Doctor: *Visibly not satisfied, but not angry* “You know, you need to book a time before you can see a doctor here. You cannot just walk in and demand one.”

I was now even more confused and annoyed, but I was still trying to be polite.

Me: “But that’s exactly what I tried to do! I did ask the receptionist how to book a time, but they didn’t answer me. They just gave me some papers to fill out and asked me to sit down and wait! I never expected to see a doctor now or even today!”

The doctor finally seemed to realize what had happened.

Doctor: “Really? Well, there is a phone number you can call. And since you live outside of this area, you should go to another healthcare center closer to your address.”

The doctor checked my wrist, and thankfully, it was only about me not being used to this kind of work, so it only needed as much rest as I could give it for a few days. I was still allowed to work.

But I never got an answer to my original question: how do I book a time with a doctor at the healthcare center in my area? It took me at least a year before I found out on my own, and only because I had learned the language well enough.

A Most Unreceptive Receptionist, Part 9
A Most Unreceptive Receptionist, Part 8
A Most Unreceptive Receptionist, Part 7
A Most Unreceptive Receptionist, Part 6
A Most Unreceptive Receptionist, Part 5

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We’re Not Kitten; You’re A Hero!

, , , , , , | Healthy | April 19, 2021

I’m a Registered Veterinary Technician running my own pet sitting and dog walking business. I’m on day two of a three-day overnight pet sit at a breeder’s home with cats and dogs and it’s a long weekend for Easter. There are currently three six-and-a-half-week-old kittens running about creating havoc and general kitten mischief.

I have to drive back into town to care for my own pets and take a quick shower. Shortly after returning to the client’s home, I hear faint distressed meowing coming from down the hallway. I go to investigate, opening some of the bedrooms to check to make sure I didn’t lock a kitten in when letting the dogs in and out of their rooms.

I get to the master bedroom and find a bunch of the cats peeking under the bed, and the meowing is coming from underneath it. I get down and look and find one of the kittens wrapped up in some fabric that had been torn from the bottom of the box spring. I reach under to try to unwrap her, but she’s halfway under and I can barely reach or see her and it feels like the fabric is wrapped around a leg. I crawl back out and rush to the kitchen to grab a pair of scissors to try to cut her out with.

On my way back, I hear her give one more strained cry and fall silent. I rush over to the side of the bed and get down, ready to reach back under, only to be face to face with an angry hissing momma cat. Fearing more for the kitten than myself, I plead with her not to scratch my face and reach under. The kitten has gone limp. In a panic, I realize that there is no way I am going to be able to maneuver the scissors to cut the fabric and instead grab a handful of the fabric close to the boxspring and pull. I don’t know if it’s adrenaline or if the fabric is just frayed enough, but I manage to rip the fabric from the bed and pull the kitten out.

She’s still not moving or breathing, and I see that the fabric is wrapped tightly around her little neck. I manage to get the scissors between the fabric and cut it. Even with the fabric removed from her neck, she still is not breathing, and I begin CPR and mouth to mouth. After a minute of compressions and breaths, she starts coughing and moving sluggishly. I scoop her up and rush to put her in a carrier while getting the emergency vet number and also trying to reach my client over the phone.

We don’t have an emergency vet that stays open up here; instead, the clinics rotate who is on call each day and you have to wait for them to call you back. While waiting, I keep monitoring the kitten, and she slowly starts to move around and be aware of her surroundings.

Finally, after twenty minutes, the vet calls me back and we go through an assessment over the phone to determine if I should bring her in. By then, the kitten is acting as if nothing happened beyond being a bit quiet, and it is decided that she will be okay.

And that is how I saved the life of a six-and-a-half-week-old kitten by knowing how to perform CPR on pets. Happy Pet First Aid Month, everyone! If you have pets, please consider enrolling in a class that will teach you Pet CPR and First Aid; you never know when it may save a tiny life.

This story is part of our Feel Good roundup for April 2021!

Read the next Feel Good roundup for April 2021 story!

Read the Feel Good roundup for April 2021!

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Make Your Bloodwork Work For You

, , , , , , , | Healthy | April 15, 2021

I have a coworker who brags about never answering her phone if she doesn’t recognize the number. I’m not sure what the big deal is; if it’s a telemarketer just hang up. Also, she says she never listens to voicemails because if it’s important they’ll call back.

Recently, she went to her doctor on a Friday because she had been feeling terrible for a while. The doctor took bloodwork and she went home.

The doctor’s office then spent the rest of the weekend trying to call her and tell her to go to the emergency room based on her test results. However, she didn’t recognize the number so she didn’t answer it.

Finally, they were able to call her next of kin, and he called her to go to the ER.

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Put Your Foot In Your Mouth And We’ll Never Touch It Again

, , , , | Healthy | CREDIT: SubjectDelta28 | April 13, 2021

I work at a podiatrist’s office as an X-ray tech. Most of our patients are elderly and are near and dear to my heart — the kind of people who are like second grandparents to you whose feet you happen to be very acquainted with. Then there’s patients like this woman.

[Patient] is that kind of woman who’s sickly sweet to your face and then complains to your superiors like you killed her puppy. We dread looking at the schedule to see her name on the daily patient appointment list. Some of my coworkers have flat-out REFUSED to take her back to a patient room and get vital signs, prep her room, etc. Everyone at my office has a [Patient] story. It’s practically a rite of passage.

She has been coming to our office for about three years. In my own personal experience with her, she acts kind to my face but slightly entitled. She once complained to my doctor about something I did, and to be honest, it was so mundane that neither I nor the doctor she complained to — who owns our practice — took it seriously. The doctor told the patient she’d speak to me about it and told me, “Oh, [Patient] complained about you, [My Name], but she complains about everyone.”

When she didn’t get the proper reaction that she expected from the doctor, she then tried to call a day or so later and speak to our office manager. My coworker picked up the phone and spoke to her. She had the NERVE to say, “I don’t want to get anyone in trouble, but I think it needs to be addressed.” Lady, you went out of your way TWICE to complain about me. You wanted me to get in trouble.

On to the main event: [Patient] FINALLY gets her comeuppance.

I am on maternity leave when this happens, so this is second-hand from my coworker.

[Patient] comes into the office in apparently a very foul mood — more so than usual, anyway. One of our nurses calls [Patient] back to a room three minutes after her scheduled appointment time. [Patient] proceeds to contradict all of the nurse’s questions and information out of spite.

For example:

Nurse #1: “[Patient], your blood pressure is 142/90.”

Patient: “That’s not right. My blood pressure is usually 140/80.”

[Nurse #1] is an older woman and is over the years of [Patient]’s bulls***, so she merely says:

Nurse #1: “Okay then.”

Then, when the doctor comes in, [Patient] starts making demands.

Patient: “You have to give me an injection! My feet hurt and you’re going to fix it now.”

The doctor’s policy is that these injections, which can help with certain types of foot pain, are a once-in-every-three-months deal, and if something stronger is needed, they’ll look at physical therapy, so they don’t just throw pain pills at you. [Patient] had her injection about one week ago and has constantly refused physical therapy despite having no valid or medical reason to not go. She is very lazy and just wants a solution NOW; she doesn’t want to correct things in her life that would easily stop the problem for good, instead of temporarily.

Then, [Patient] demands new diabetic shoes. Normally, we do offer this service with [Nurse #2], who is the only one with the certification to take the measurements for these shoes. However, [Patient] burned that bridge a long time ago because she repeatedly treated [Nurse #2] like garbage and called her a b****. [Nurse #2] refused to measure her ever again long ago.

Knowing this, the doctor tells [Patient] that she will send orders for new diabetic shoes to another company we work with. But [Patient] doesn’t WANT shoes from them. She wants them from US. The doctor doesn’t want to throw [Nurse #2] under the bus, so she simply tells her that we’re not offering diabetic shoes from our office at this time. [Patient] keeps getting angrier but has no choice but to accept defeat.

She goes to our receptionist’s window and pays with a credit card.

Receptionist: “Would you like your receipt?”

Patient: “Ugh, no! Why would I want that?”

She then proceeds to stomp on out to her car. Three minutes later, she calls our receptionist from the parking lot.

Patient: *Angry* “You need to print me off a receipt for our transaction today! Why wasn’t I given one?!”

Receptionist: “Ma’am, I offered it to you before you left. I can send it to you in the mail or you can pick it up from our office at your convenience.”

Patient: “You did not offer me my receipt! I’m in the parking lot; you need to bring it out to me now!”

Receptionist: “Ma’am, you can come back inside and get it or I can send it to you in the mail. I can’t leave my desk as I’m the only receptionist in the office today.”

Patient: “You have to bring it out to me now! My legs hurt and I can’t walk in there!”

This is crap; she just walked out of the building just fine and had no leg injuries.

Then, [Patient] just starts yelling about how she doesn’t deserve to be treated like this and how someone needs to bring her the receipt NOW, and so on. It’s so loud that [Nurse #2] can hear [Patient] yelling on the phone from several feet away.

Nurse #2: “Is that [Patient]?”

Receptionist: “It is.”

Nurse #2: “Give me the phone; I’ll handle this.” *Into the phone* “Hello, this is [Nurse #2]. How can I help you?”

Patient: *Yelling* “You need to bring me my receipt now. My legs hurt and you need to bring it now! I should have been offered it in the first place when I checked out! This is ridiculous. You’re all incompetent! Bring it to me now!

Nurse #2: “Ma’am, your legs seemed to be working just fine when you walked out of the office. Now, you can either come in and get your paper yourself or we can mail it to you.”

[Patient] starts yelling incoherently, repeatedly calling [Nurse #2] a b****, etc.

Nurse #2: “You have a nice day ma’am.” *Hangs up*

[Nurse #2] told me how great it felt to just call [Patient] out on her bulls*** and it was so satisfying to hear about. But it gets BETTER! Apparently, the doctor that was working that day had overheard [Patient] yelling on the phone and was NOT having the way [Patient] treated the entire staff. She told our other doctor — the one that owns the practice — and they agreed that they would dismiss her from the practice.

The rest of my workdays are looking a lot more [Patient]-less every day I go in.

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