Thursday, March 06, 2008

The more I think about this....

....the more mad I get!!

I just got off the phone with the ENTs office because they needed a good talking to...


Yesterday afternoon it occurred to me that we had not been given any prescriptions. No antibiotics, no pain medication...nothing.
Our discharge paperwork says we should give Elizabeth alternating doses of Motrin and Tylenol every two hours (pretty standard kid dosing for high fevers). I figured, they must have filled her IV with antibiotics during the surgery so she doesn't need any now.
You know how sometimes you can get a shot of crazy potent antibiotics and save yourself the 10 days of nasty medicine...

Anyway. Not satisfied with my own explanation, I called the surgery department at the hospital to have the nurse look in Elizabeth's chart and tell me if they did or did not give her antibiotics.
They did NOT.
Then the nurse (who was otherwise wonderful post-op) told me that she didn't think the doctor regularly prescribed antibiotics to his patients post-op and that he definitely did NOT prescribe narcotic pain relief to children. But, she also said that I should call HIS office to make sure since the prescriptions would have been called in from there ahead of the surgery.

Of course, I did that.
The gal at the ENTs office said that YES they HAD called in prescriptionSSSS for Elizabeth the day before her surgery. I said thanks and asked Bob to pick them up for us.
He came home with a GIANT bottle of amoxicillan and another even bigger bottle of Tylenol WITH CODEINE <=== THIS IS A NARCOTIC PAINKILLER PRESCRIBED TO MY CHILD! That nurse was totally full of shit.

I was miffed at first, then ruffled, progressing to annoyed, angered and finally downright spitting mad!
I called up the ENTs office again this morning and explained the situation to them. How I thought it was potentially dangerous for the post-surgical nurse to discharge patients with incomplete prescription information AND to later tell patients that antibiotic prescriptions following tonsillectomy are not routine. Uh, that is just stupid.
If I was less informed about medicine and illness, I may have just signed off on that nurse's explanation and NEVER GOTTEN MY CHILD ON ANTIBIOTICS FOLLOWING SURGERY!!

That is so, so very dangerous. Especially when INFECTION is like the No. 1 post-operative complication associated with this type of surgery. Hello! The wounds are inside your mouth! The dirtiest place on Earth!

Anyway, I believe I adequately conveyed my dismay to the gals at the ENTs office who said they would be getting in touch with the surgical staff at the hospital to let them know that YES antibiotics are prescribed following ENT surgery (ya dumb hos) <= My addition.
I made a point to name names also and told them exactly which nurse gave us completely incorrect and dangerous information. Sorry broad. Maybe you should think before you talk??

I feel very bad for those parents who also had their kids in for surgery that morning, at least four other kids, who may NOT have been as proactive as I was and made sure that they knew EXACTLY what was going on post-operatively.

The surgery staff is supposed to call today to check in on her progress and you can be damn sure that I will give them a good stern talking to as well.
I'm no shrinking wallflower by any means and I certainly won't back down when it comes to my kids' health and wellbeing.

I'm also planning to inform our regular pediatrician about his since his office proffered the referral in the first place. Dr. B is awesome, a great advocate for kids and parents and I know he would be very upset to know that pediatric surgery patients are being discharged from surgery with inadequate post-op instructions.

I should mention that Dr. B took care of Dylan during his RSV hospitalization (which resulted in us being transferred because of the stupid uninformed staff at our local hospital). When he found out what had transpired to cause the staff to call for our transfer to the pediatric hospital he was INCENSED and held a meeting with the staff to correct the mistake. He then changed his policy to admitting pediatric RSV patients straight into the ICU where the nurses are less weenie-rific.

Good lord, even after getting all this out, I am still SO STEAMING MAD. Like I want to go slap a ho mad. Grr.


Jessica said...

You can tell I'm really mad because I used big words like "conveyed" and "proffered" along with words like "ho".

Mama's got her feathers all a'ruffled.

Jason said...

Go get 'em!

Amy said...

Stupid peeps!

eaf said...

This is why I am so glad I live where I do. Duke hospital and UNC main campus are both right down the road and both Universities run teaching hospitals all over the area. A new one just opened up in my little town that has a 'copter pad and everything.

I am horrible about asking questions of doctors, since I have no frame of reference. I have rarely been ill and my biggest surgery was having my wisdom teeth pulled. (Not even extracted... they came in straight with no issues).

I am getting better though. Especially by reading your blog! Thanks, Jess!

I'm so glad the surgery went well and that you finally did get the prescriptions you needed. Elizabeth looks great in the pictures.

Anonymous said...

sorry about the feather ruffling, but elizabeth looks great! (last i heard, smiling after pediatric surgery is a good thing...)


Jessica said...

Her good times may have been short-lived. She started to get fevery yesterday and woke up today with 101.2 axillary temp, which means 102.2 oral temp. Not good.
We called her surgeon last night and he told us to make her drink more fluids and call in the morning.
I hope she won't have to be admitted for IV fluids. She's totally not interested in drinking anything. I have to sit right next to her and make her take sips.
Not good at all.

Anne Marie said...

You are such a great mom- being so informed will probably save other kids from experiencing this "lack of information" upon being released from surgery.

I hope Elizabeth gets better- try popsicles, those are our kids #1 favorite when they get sick. It's a tasty way for them to get some fluids when nothing else sounds good.

Jessica said...

We didn't go into the hospital.
As I got off the phone with the surgeon, who was going to call into the ER to expect us, I told Elizabeth she was going to get a pokey and she chugged a whole glass of milk to avoid it. Fear. The great motivator.

Jessica said...

AM- I don't know if I'm a GREAT mom, but after two kids and all their sicknesses and hospitalizations, I know enough about medicine that the nurses aren't going to fool me.
Not that I think they're trying to, but it's like any other get burnt out, things that seem routine you gloss over...unfortunately in health care, that's how people get hurt and ill.
I keep my eye on them for sure.