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patient talking with doctor and the doctor is confused

Good ol’ Emergency Department visits

How many times have you walked into the Emergency Department and tried to accurately explain why you are in there? Do you think that they understand that you are (if you’re like me) a control freak and hate the caving feeling of being back in those waiting room seats?

The other day I had to go to ED for an allergic reaction. Did they know or even appreciate how proud of myself that it had almost been 10 months since my last hospital visit? Or that I’d actually been healthy for so long that it felt like a kick in the guts to be back there? But I did. Because I knew for my health I needed to be there.

I work at the local hospital. It’s been both a blessing and a curse. My last hospitalization was because I passed out at my desk in the middle of an open plan floor. A MET Code call was placed and the floor was swarmed with people watching or participating in cannulating me and trying to wake me. It was embarrassing. I feel so much shame around it. Silly, but I do.

So when I was having a reaction the other day, I grabbed my antihistamines, but I knew this wasn’t good. It was escalating too quickly. So I asked a colleague to walk down to ED with me. One that I wouldn’t crush if I fell ;P

Dismissed by medical professionals

But I was received by an angry nurse who dismissed me. She accused me of being stubborn and not putting my health first. She even brushed me off as having a panic attack!

I wasn’t doing either of those things! I was taking my health seriously. If I had of been at home, it would have been a lot longer before I got to the hospital. Also, I know my body. I didn’t waste any time at all before heading to the ED. I assessed the situation and knew that I needed to go to the ED.

I can never win when it comes to IBD

Sometimes it feels like I cannot ever win. Sometimes I don’t take my health seriously enough or I’m being told there is nothing wrong and I’m being dramatic. I guess it’s who I land with when going through the system.

Lately, I’ve been having a lot of bad experiences when going through ED. There was a time that I’d say “ileostomy or Crohn’s” and I’d be straight in with no wait time. I miss the days of knowing how to play the system to my advantage. I think I’ve also gotten a bit soft and don’t like to skip the queue as much.

Getting past the gatekeeper disguised as a nurse is one thing, but then there are the doctors and nurses in the back who can squash you as soon as you open your mouth. “Well, your body is saying you are just fine..” Yeah, well my body is a jerk who likes to play games!

I know my body best

It’s those moments that I feel as delusional as I possibly could and have to really assess if it’s me or my body? I use the good old trick of comparing the “normal” me to this version of me that is presenting. After all, they don’t know me. I don’t want to be there anymore; in fact, I’m 99% sure that I want to be there a lot less than they do. They get paid for my visit. I generally lose money! *insert facepalm here***

Remember that when you are being dismissed. Remind them that this visit was probably after an internal fight over who decided which was more important; being a stubborn control freak or caving to not wanting to feel so awful.

If we’re presenting to you; we’ve lost our own battle.

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.


  • poonicorn
    10 months ago

    I can’t stand going to the emergency department!

    I don’t even waste my time going there anymore even if I need it because they always take 5 hours to run urine and blood tests while giving me iv fluids. All that just to say “your urine test was fine, your blood test was pretty much fine. You have inflammation of [insert any part of the digestivetract]” and then they send me home with Zofran for nausea. No sense in laying in their bed being freezing cold and crying in pain and getting charged for it when I can just lay in my warm bed at home and cry in pain for free. I’ll wait to see my specialist unless Im literally dying

  • Julie Marie Palumbo moderator
    10 months ago

    This definitely resonates with me, Krystal.

    I went to the ER with terrible belly pain and while I “didn’t look sick” the ER doctor had me follow his finger with my eyes while he then pushed on my stomach to see if distracting me would take away the pain (crazy, right?!) I instinctively grabbed his hands as I saw them go towards my belly and said what are you doing?? He said “I am just making sure the pain is real.” Fast forward to my CT results coming back and I had a golfball-size abscess on my small intestine and was immediately admitted.

    I am sure that some health professionals get calloused after dealing with patients who are just drug-seekers and looking for pain meds, but it ruins it for the rest of us who aren’t taken seriously which can lead to disastrous consequences.

    I love how you pointed out that no one knows our bodies as well as we do, as truer words have never been spoken!

    –Julie (Team Member)

  • thedancingcrohnie moderator
    10 months ago

    You certainly aren’t alone! ER can be definitely be a frustrating place.

    Thank you for sharing!

    Always dancing,
    Elizabeth (team member)

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