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Taking Control of the Pain

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Last night I had enough! I was sick and tired of feeling the pain from my distended stomach that has been ongoing for two weeks. While at St. Joes in my most recent stay, I was transferred back and forth between teams and never had a consistent hospitalist to represent my case. Based on one of the comments from an Oncologist, I decided to try another route through SHC and see if I could get another answer. Worse case scenario, I would lose another night of sleep in ER. Best case scenario, I would have an answer to my ongoing stomach pain and be on the way to a solution.

I arrived to the ER at 10pm, was admitted to the back area by midnight and to my own room by 2:30am. The only pain medication at this point was 1 mg of dilaudid. Are you kidding me? I am used to receiving 4 mg every 2-3 hours! Somehow, I was able to fall into a deep sleep and only woke twice during the night. This was a HUGE improvement over the past few nights! I woke at 7am eager to find out next steps and get the pain under control.

It wasn’t until 10am or so that I finally saw the internal medicine doc who wrote for a CT scan and medications. Shortly after, I saw two ladies that represented “supportive care”. From what I understand, their job was to make sure that my pain was managed until I met with the pain doc’s team “Dr. Stern”.

I expressed my concern and lack of attention to the pain. They immediately went to track down the nurse and put in an order to be moved to the Oncology floor. The nurse returned saying that she could not give me IV dilauded and had to get the pills approved since I was not allowed to drink water prior to the scan. At this point, I almost lost it. My voice was shaking and I was on the verge of crying. I exclaimed, “I don’t know what you need to do, but get the doctor on the phone and we have GOT to get some sort of pain meds! By the time I received the pills and they started working, it will be 1 1/2 hours from now. I can’t wait that long!

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HERWriter Guide

My goodness, Melissa, you are an oncology patient and they are not tending to your pain properly? Like you, I would have raised the roof! I'm sorry you were in so much pain for so long.

I know it sounds like such a cliche but you are really an incredibly brave human being. And here am I bitching that I can't lose an inch from my upper body. You put so much into perspective.

I hope your chemo can kick this cancer's butt and that these two tumors are eliminated as quickly as possible.

Thank you for the update and our very best to you.

April 25, 2009 - 5:02pm
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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.

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