Doctors, nurses, and staying healthy

Got More Than A Chip On Your Shoulder

, , | Healthy | November 29, 2017

(I go to my routine semi-annual dental check-up, and tell my dentist that I think I have chipped a molar, as there is a rough patch on my tooth that keeps catching my tongue, causing it to blister and bleed on a regular basis.)

Dentist: “Oh, yes, there is a small chip.”

Me: “Can we get it fixed?”

Dentist: “Insurance won’t cover the procedure as it’s ‘cosmetic.’”

Me: “It’s literally causing my tongue to bleed. This chip is painful, and it’s actually causing injury to me. I think it’s more than cosmetic.”

Dentist: “Oh, you’ll be fine. Just don’t play with it.”

(This went on for months. I kept asking him to fix the chip, and he kept refusing. I also got opinions from other dentists that said the chip needed to be filled, but my dentist still refused. Ultimately I switched to a new dentist due to a change in insurance; the new dentist took one look at the chip and had me scheduled for an appointment to get it filled a few days later.)

New Dentist: “Yeah, let’s get this taken care of; you shouldn’t have to suffer with this chip causing you pain and open sores. Plus, it’s deep enough that your dentin is exposed. If we leave this open any longer, your whole tooth would be in danger of forming an abscess, which would need a root canal to fix.”

Me: *in shocked disbelief* “My tooth could have rotted away from the inside out because my old dentist couldn’t be bothered to give me a filling the size of a pin-head?!”

New Dentist: “Yep.”

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Cancer Is A Crime

, , | Healthy | November 28, 2017

(I’ve been diagnosed with cancer and am on numerous medications, including morphine and oxycodone for the pain I am in. I’m pretty skinny and pale and not looking healthy after six months of chemotherapy. I go to my normal pharmacy with my paper prescription to get filled and a new pharmacy tech, or at least one I’ve never seen in the six months I’ve frequented this place, greets me. I hand him my paperwork, and he starts to type in into his computer, and then looks at me and says:)

Pharmacy Tech: “I see you’ve been getting these pills for a few months now, and you’re refilling them on the same date every month. You can’t fill this if you’re just going to sell them on the street for your drug money.”

(My jaw drops, and he hands my prescription back to me.)

Pharmacy Tech: “I’m calling the police now, sir, so don’t run off.”

(He then goes to the phone and starts dialing. The pharmacist sees me through their little window and waves at me, I see her a lot when I’m there and she’s helped consult me on the timing of taking my meds so I don’t make myself sick. I wave her over.)

Pharmacist: “Hi!”

Me: “You may want to talk to your new guy. He’s calling the cops on me.”

(She turns around and sees him on the phone.)

Pharmacist: “What are you doing?”

Pharmacy Tech: *covers the receiver* “This junkie is trying to get pills to sell. I’m calling the cops.”

(She rips the phone out of his hand and yells at him.)

Pharmacist: “He has cancer, you idiot!”

(He went pale. She sent him away and hung up the phone. I got my refills, and I never saw that guy again.)

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Digger-ing Yourself Into A Hole

, | Healthy | November 28, 2017

(I am at the pharmacy to pick up a prescription that was called in.)

Tech: “Can I help you?”

Me: “I need to pick up for [Last Name].”

Tech: *types into computer* “First name?”

Me: “Digger.”

Tech: “Digger?”

Me: “Yes.”

(The tech give me a funny look and goes into the back. He returns with the medicine in hand.)

Tech: “So, you can’t drive while taking this. Also, you cannot drink alcohol while taking this. I will need you to sign saying you understand those restrictions.”

Me: *laughing* “No problem.”

Tech: “I need a date of birth.”

Me: “October 2015. I don’t know the day.”

Tech: “You don’t know your child’s birthdate?”

Me: “It’s not my child.”

Tech: “I’m not going to be able to fill this.”

Me: “I need the pharmacist. Now.”

(The pharmacist comes out and asks what the problem is.)

Tech: “She’s picking up this medicine but she doesn’t know the birthdate and then she says it isn’t her child.”

Pharmacist: *takes bag and reads label* “Look at this name.”

(The tech looks and still doesn’t seem to understand.)

Pharmacist: “The patient is named Digger K9 [Last Name]. That means it’s for her dog. Lots of people don’t know their dog’s birthday.”

Tech: “How was I supposed to know?”

Pharmacist: “I’ll finish this. Go wait in the office for me.”

(When I went to get his refill, the same tech handled the transaction. He commented that it was a really big dose for a toddler. Pretty sure whatever the pharmacist said — it didn’t help.)

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You Suck(tion)!

, , | Healthy | November 28, 2017

(I have a rare disease for which I have to have blood work done every few months. I always get it done at the local health department because I don’t have insurance and labs are too expensive elsewhere. They used to have a phlebotomist on staff who was quite good at her job, but she retired around a year before this incident. After she retired, for a while, my tests were done by whichever nurse happened to be available. On this day, one of the nurses who has drawn my blood a few times before is training a different nurse on lab procedures, so the trainee nurse is actually the one doing the draw. I’m often a problematic draw because my veins are small, and sometimes my blood doesn’t come out. This happens after several other mishaps, including the trainee nurse not noticing all of the tests I need to have done, having to remind both of them that one of my samples has to be frozen, and the trainee nurse failing to draw from my left arm and having to try my right arm instead. As the trainee nurse is drawing my blood, she’s pulling up on the needle in a way that makes it hurt like h***, but I’m kind of used to it, so I’m just responding to the talkative trainer nurse and not looking at my arm. Finally the trainee nurse finishes filling the last vial and removes the needle. Something feels a little odd, so I look down to see blood POURING from my arm. I’ve been getting labs done regularly for about 13 years at this point, and I’ve never seen anything like that, so I’m a bit alarmed.)

Me: “What the h***?!

Trainee Nurse: “…”

Trainer Nurse: “Oh! *to trainee nurse* “Looks like you broke the suction…” *to me* “Uh, she broke the suction… But that’s okay! It’s perfectly fine, just looks bad. Don’t worry!”

Me: “Uh…”

Trainee Nurse: “It happens sometimes.”

Me: “That has NEVER happened to me before. But okay, sure.”

(That’s not something that just “happens sometimes”; that’s something you DO.)

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Extra Nerve-ous

, | Healthy | November 27, 2017

(I’m deadly afraid of dentists, but one day I finally get the courage to go see one for a routine check up. They tell me I need to get my wisdom teeth removed and we set up an appointment.)

Me: “Please be patient.”

Dentist: “This will not hurt at all in a few minutes, after the anaesthetic kicks off.”

(He gives me three injections. A few minutes later he pokes me with an instrument.)

Me: “Aaaah!”

Dentist: “Okay, more anaesthetic.”

(He gives me another injection, waits a few more minutes, then pokes me with an instrument.)


Dentist: “Don’t lie; it doesn’t hurt.”

Me: “Please, I swear it does.”

Dentist: “I can’t give you any more anaesthetic. Go home and come back next week. Take a valium.”

(One week and one valium later:)

Dentist: “I gave you all the anaesthetic I can. Stop crying for nothing.”

(In extreme pain, I manage to get to the opening of the area around the tooth, then he begins pulling.)

Me: “No more! Please stop!”

Dentist: “Just a bit more. Let me pull some more. It doesn’t hurt.”

Me: *refusing to open my mouth any more* “No.”

(The dentist even called my mom, and she screamed at me to stop being a wuss. Still, I refused to get anything else and he was forced to close the gap and let me go. He was kind enough to recommend another dentist with access to morphine. Thankfully the new dentist thought that my problem was probably that I had an extra nerve around that area. He gave me a normal anaesthetic where he thought it was and took out the tooth without so much as a peep from me. The lesson is: trust yourself.)

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