Could use some good thoughts...

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Amy Bahama
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Posts: 659
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Location: Crystal Spring, PA

Could use some good thoughts...

Post by Amy Bahama » 4 months ago

I haven't written anything in here in a long, long time. I still read your posts though and today I find myself without anyone to talk to so I thought I would share here.

My husband got sick back in February. He is a big guy. Typical beer gut country boy, 6'3, tough as nails and very, very strong. He is a blaster in the aggregate industry, a volunteer firefighter, a former dairy farmer and former welder/machinist used to throwing around steel bars like they are nothing. So under his beer belly is pretty tough and has some muscle. On Valentines Day he wound up in the ER with a fever and horrible pain in his abdomen. We sat in the ER for 7 hours before the surgeon came in. The surgeon walked in and didn't say hello I'm Dr. so and so or anything and he just says, your size is a huge problem. And starts going on and on that if they go in he could have all these issues and he is too big and this and that. Mind you my husband just sat there for 7 hours sick as a dog. He point blank asked the surgeon, can you help me or not. The guy said he had to walk out and left us there another hour. He comes back and has decided he is going to try and go in laproscopically to check my husband's appendix. They had done CAT scans and blood count tests while we had been waiting the 7 hours. The ER doctor said it was his appendix right away. So we though this would be a good thing. Mind you we had gone to our family hospital. It's smaller and only a handful of surgeons are available at any given point. My stepmother is the head radiologist there, I have a few more aunts that work throughout the place, etc. We've both gone to doctors affiliated with this hospital our whole lives. So they finally take him back, the doctor goes in laproscopically and two hours later coms and finds me in the waiting room. He shows me pictures and says that's what he looks like inside. To me these mean nothing. I'm like ok, can you explain when I'm looking at. He says he is too inflamed inside to see anything so we didn't remove anything. He ended up putting drains in his abdomen. They held him in the hospital for 4 days and gave him high powered antibiotics through his IV. They released him and he had to keep those drains in for another 7 days. He had to take 2 more rounds of antibiotics when he got out and after they pulled the drains. Then they did another cat scan and since the inflammation was down, they said he was ok. I guess when your appendix gets perforated, it can actually rejuvenate itself after you get the inflammation out. In the meantime, the surgeon wanted him to get a colonoscopy about 4 weeks later.

We go for the colonoscopy and he comes out of the anesthesia and the surgeon, who did I mention is a weightloss bariatric surgeon as well, told him because of his size, they couldn't finish and he would have to come back for a second one and that my husband was just too big. Well Chad was barely out of anesthesia and at this point had just had enough. He got his clothes on and we left. The nurses told us to file a complaint because they heard how this guy had talked to him. The ER nurses in February told us to file a complaint. We being bigger people don't run and file complaints because a doc says lose weight, but this guy was just unreal and argumentative and nasty from the get go. So we filed a complaint about how Chad was treated, how we've had no formal diagnosis of whether his appendix was the problem or if he had diverticulitis which prompted the colonoscopy. His records were transferred to a different surgeon, but since he had been feeling better we didn't pursue anything else.

Fast forward to this weekend. We have been in lockdown probably way more strictly compared to those of you in other states. Our governor here in Pennsylvania is an idiot. I've been working from home since March 17th. I am not getting out of the house much. I can't go see my mom as she is immuno-compromised. Haven't been able to see his family much though I did sneak my nephews over to our place in the woods for 5 days to give their mom a break. This weekend on what should have been Derby Day, Chad took me on a roadtrip. We went to Gettysburg, Frederick, MD and then up to see his parents in Jennerstown PA. We had plans to do a quick trip to visit my mom from her porch on Sunday. We got home kind of late and went to bed. Apparently, I snore which is something women suddenly develop when they get married according to their husbands. So I wake up at 7 and Chad isn't in bed and I was like oh no, I must have been snoring. I go out in the living room and he is laying on his recliner. I'm like I'm sorry I was snoring and he was like no, I'm sick. He was super nauseous and his stomach was tender to touch again on the lower right side. I'm like ok, we are going to the doctor. We started making calls and the doctor on call in our home hospital is that same ass of a surgeon. The new guy we are supposed to see is on vacation until Tuesday. So we made the decision to try the smaller hospital closer to our home and just get a fresh start. Mind you, this hospital is considered a trauma center. We pull in, they scan us for temperatures and I hand them his history from his chart I was able to get online. They make me go back out to my car now and won't let me in to be with him. I sit there for an hour, two hours. At this point I need facilities, they won't let me in. Luckily, one of my sister's lives near by so I go to her house to wait. I was able to use the restroom and sit for 5 minutes and he calls me saying they want him to go to Conemaugh in Johnstown PA which is an hour and a half from where we are because even as a Trauma center, they do not have a surgeon available to take his appendix out and it needs to come out right now. So I go back to the hospital, expecting that he is going to go by ambulance. But my stubborn ass of a husband told them no, that I would drive him.

I finally know how men must feel driving their pregnant wives to hospitals. I was just praying his appendix wouldn't burst. This is not an easy drive from McConnellsburg, PA to Johnstown, PA. It's mountainous, no real direct highway route without going way off course. We had kicked around going straight to Conemaugh, but the drive is killer for us as we live about an hour and some minutes away, and I was hoping we can stay close to our house. All of my family is mostly from around Johnstown, so that is the only benefit. We whip into the ER there, hand them his papers, they actually let me in for a brief moment to talk to the admissions people and then I got escorted out of the building. I was thinking he was in good hands and instead of sitting in the parking lot, I went to my other sister's house which is two minutes away. I kept texting him and he sat in that waiting room at the ER as a transfer patient for 4 hours because he showed up in a private vehicle and not the ambulance like he should have they didn't realize he was there. The paperwork was messed up. At this point I am livid and I start making phone calls. I'm livid at him for being so stubborn and idiotic, I'm livid at the hospital for making him sit there. We started this fiasco at 10AM and he was not in a hospital room until 930 Sunday night. At this point his white blood count has skyrocketed and they won't operate on Sunday. He couldn't have any food or water or anything all that night, the next day they tell him he is going for surgery at 10 AM. He didn't get taken down until 2PM. He didn't get into the operating room until 4PM. He didn't come out of surgery until 7PM. You want to know why he didn't get in till 2PM? Because HIS FREAKING COVID LAB didn't come back until late. The man has no signs of it, no symptoms, has a massive infection in his stomach with a possibly burst appendix and they had to wait for this covid lab before they operated on him. It is probably good that I cannot be with him because I probably would have been arrested yesterday.

So the surgeon called me finally at 730 and she is very nice and explained everything that they did. They attempted to go in laproscopically but he is such a mess inside again that they resorted to opening him up. They removed his appendix, that she said has been messed up and destroyed for a long time. It was perforated and just needed out. She said it should have come out in February. He is now in a lot of pain that even morphine isn't touching. It is killing me that I can't be there for him. I'm bombarded with calls from all of his family and his mother is a paramedic and she is throwing all these things out at me that could happen and it scares me more. I'm just a wreck. I feel like I have abandoned him because I can't be there. I'm at home an hour and a half away and he is going through this horridly painful thing and I can't be there to hold his hand or fight through the red tape battles because of the idiotic CoVid restrictions put in place. We live in a county that had 2 cases. The county he is in now had 10 and it was elderly in a nursing home. I'm just over this.

When I talked to him this morning and he was sounding horrible. I hung up and bawled my eyes out. He called me just a minute ago about 5 hours later as I was typing this and he sounds like a new man. They put him on a different pain medicine and he is actually up and walking. We have a long road ahead, not only with his health, but deciding if we want to pursue anything against the first surgeon from February. It's just sad that all of this could have been avoided and now he is suffering twice. Sorry for droning on and on here, just felt good to get some of my thoughts down. Thank god the SIM is here for a small distraction.
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Pete Vella
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Re: Could use some good thoughts...

Post by Pete Vella » 4 months ago

My thoughts and prayers are with you both. I hope for a very speedy painless recovery for Chad.

Sorry for all the * you both gave had to endure with all this.

And you know I’m only a sim message away if you need anything.
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Darcy McBride
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Re: Could use some good thoughts...

Post by Darcy McBride » 4 months ago

I am so sorry you had to go through all of this! You are your husband and family are in my prayers. I am so glad they were able to get it done and find a pain medication that helped. The good thing is now he is on the road to recovery!

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Stormy Peak
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Re: Could use some good thoughts...

Post by Stormy Peak » 4 months ago

From what I understand, surgeons anymore use the over-weight excuse to not operate because IF a patient does die, they don't want that on their record...nor the chance of a lawsuit. I have an uncle, who's doctor told him that, as he was overweight and needed surgery on a shoulder injury. The doctor told him that, yes, being overweight can slightly increase complications but that it's not such an issue as many doctors make it out to be - they are not looking out so much for the patient but for their own 'good record' as a successful surgeon.

I hope you and you're husband both start to feel better, and yeah, consider seriously about pursuing it, if that other surgeon seems to have needlessly made your husband suffer when a quick surgery could have fixed things and probably without that much of a risk to your husband.

Sorry you've had to deal with so much stress. I've had more than my own fair share of it this past year and a half, and even when things calm down, it still takes a lot of time to unwind and actually start to think it's finally over.

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Laura Ferguson
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Re: Could use some good thoughts...

Post by Laura Ferguson » 4 months ago

So sorry you had to go through this - I was hoping the February round would be the end of it. I found the following, which may be helpful to you.

https://www.informedpatientinstitute.or ... ity-PA.php

Hoping from here on out the rest of the recovery goes smoothly!

Laura

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Leigh Ann Anderson
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Re: Could use some good thoughts...

Post by Leigh Ann Anderson » 4 months ago

I am so sorry, but relieved that his appendix is out and the pain meds are working. A good doctor is worth their weight in gold, a bad one can cause so much damage. Wish I was closer to be of some help. The hospitals are in such turmoil right now.
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Laura Smith
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Re: Could use some good thoughts...

Post by Laura Smith » 4 months ago

I am so sorry. What an absolute nightmare you both have endured. Hoping he continues to recover smoothly.
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Rebecca Rose Hepburn
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Re: Could use some good thoughts...

Post by Rebecca Rose Hepburn » 4 months ago

OMG Amy, I'm so sorry. What happened to you in Feburary was absolute BS and you should peruse anything you can against the idiot surgeon from February. I have no problem admitting that I'm morbidly obese and yet I got my gallbladder take out via laparoscopic surgery later in the same dang day when I showed up to the ER and they saw what was happening on the ultrasound. The 'too fat to operate' idea is total BS, he just didn't want to deal with a more complicated surgery.
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Louise Bayou
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Re: Could use some good thoughts...

Post by Louise Bayou » 4 months ago

Wow I'm so sorry Amy. People can be A-Holes, even doctors. I'm glad that Chad is feeling better from the sounds of it. At least that is a bright spot. The other doctor you can deal with later and honestly something needs to be done about it. Just don't let it worry you or stress you out. Deal with it when things have settled down a bit...but give them hell when you get to it!

And if you need anything let me know! I'll send a little voodoo that doctors way for ya!
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Lori Hamill
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Re: Could use some good thoughts...

Post by Lori Hamill » 4 months ago

So sorry you and your hubby and family had to go through all of this. When someone is so ill no one needs the added stress of bad doctors and messed up hospitals. Sending prayers and healing thoughts Chad's way and hoping he continues to improve. He is fortunate to have such a strong wife that will be there to support him as soon as he is out of the hospital. Sending some virtual hugs your way, Amy.

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Amy Bahama
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Location: Crystal Spring, PA

Re: Could use some good thoughts...

Post by Amy Bahama » 4 months ago

Thank you everyone. He still isn't home, that white blood count just won't come down. Hoping for Saturday.
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