1 EAGLETON NOTES: Nothing Can Go Wrong

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Wednesday, 8 November 2017

Nothing Can Go Wrong

if you don't make a plan. Hmmmm.

That was, I suppose, my mistake. Not so much that I made a plan but that I expected a plan imposed by circumstances to work out. Things started to go awry when, at a day's notice, my appointment was brought forward a day to 1st November. It was a day surgery 23 hour appointment. (ie a late afternoon procedure to be kept in overnight for observation and recovery).

I left the hospital in the afternoon 149 hours and three procedures after I entered it. The kidney stone is still there and instead of a nephrostomy bag I have a bag into which my bladder empties. 

However, whilst those 149 hours may have mucked up my arrangements they have opened my eyes to many other things:
How enormously some things have changed in medicine in the last 20 years. For example, my prostatectomy in 1998 involved major invasive  surgery, 5 days in the High Dependency Unit and weeks in hospital recovering and a very great deal of pain. This week during my 149 hours several people appeared on the ward having had a prostatectomy by keyhole surgery and were discharged a day or two later.

A nurse may come on duty at 0730 and find herself at the end of her shift trying to get a patient sorted and out of severe pain and discomfort 15 hours later, having already had a full day of  dealing with patients.

If a patient becomes a major problem on a ward in the middle of the night there's no first-line defence against violence other than calming talk and hope.

If at first you don't succeed in trying to get at a patient's embedded kidney stone through damaged tissue then just calmly move on to the next option, and then the next and then the next. Then schedule a period of R and R and tissue healing until the next try in four weeks time.
I could write enough to fill a book but this is neither the time nor the place.

Suffice to say that by Saturday night I hope to be back on Lewis and in Blogland for a week or two before coming South again.

39 comments:

  1. That all sounds quite gruelling, lets hope things go better on the next attempt.

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    1. That would certainly be welcome, Kykie.

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  2. I told you this before but it bears repeating: I am certain that the nurses love you!
    Wishing the best for you.

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    1. Thank you Kay. You always make me smile and that makes me feel good.

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  3. One might say you're a bear for punishment. Better luck on the next session.

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  4. It is enough to drive you up the walls! Me thinks that I would be trying out the 'lemon juice treatment' by now to reduce the size of the stone, presumably you have looked at this method ?

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    1. Heron I have started off my day with hot water and lemon for more years than I care (or can) remember. Not, I have to say, to prevent kidney stones, but because I like it. I've actually had the stone for years and it's showed up on routine scans for my cancer but this time it had moved and blocked the exit to the kidney and the kidney had shut down. It is now rather firmly embedded but the real problem has been getting the keyhole equipment to it. Hence the stent they have now inserted.

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  5. Goodness; you've been through the mill. I drink Lemon juice every day (as Heron suggests) but I think it's 'preventative' rather than 'curative'. Hope all is soon fixed!

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    1. Cro I make up the third lemon musketeer then. I'm sure you are correct about preventative rather than curative. A kidney stone can be very hard. I read the other day that coffee is good for preventing kidney stones which cheered me up no end.

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  6. Sometimes one is the statue, others the pigeon. Good luck.

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    1. That made me laugh Adrian. I must remember that.

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  7. Phew... violent patients at night? Oh dear, it all does not sound too good! But as you say, a lot has happened (and is constantly happening) in medicine, and I am confident one of the options will work.

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    1. Meike I'm sure they will remove the stone once they have managed to get a way to it for the instruments; which is what they are now hoping they have done.

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  8. I'm figuring out from what you say that although the kidney stone issues are distressing, it is being dealt with better than it would have been 20 years ago. I really hope that next time you will be rid of the thing.
    It sounds very hard work for you.

    I entirely agree about the difficulty of dealing with patients who are confused or aggressive. Nurses really don't have any backup. This is a huge problem in places where there are demented patients, as I found when my elderly mother was in hospital. I am so absolutely furious at the way this country was misled by politicians about this non existent extra money for the NHS - better not write any more about that but continue to praise and support those who continue to work hard with such professionality and compassion.

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    1. Jenny, I'm sure that 20 years ago keyhole surgery was nowhere near as advanced or in general use as it is now. As for the crass irresponsibility of some of the politicians with 'that' slogan I have nothing but the utmost contempt.

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  9. Very best wishes for the future attempts! I am absolutely convinced that a '+ve mental attitude' will help see you through.
    Do you have someone at home to look after the hearth and any animals?

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    1. Thank you Potty. I have no animals at home (my lifestyle has never made that possible) but I do have close friends who attend to my mail and generally keep the place ticking over. Most things in the house are automated and designed for the days when I lived half in Eagleton and half in New Zealand. One advantage, too, of living in a community with virtually no crime against personal property.

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  10. Sorry to learn that the kidney stone has so far defied the surgeons. At least you can have some peace in your own home before the next invasion. If you were a football team I would be singing "ONE GRAHAM EDWARDS! THERE'S ONLY ONE GRAHAM EDWARDS!" even though googling reveals that worldwide there are more than a hundred of them!

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    1. YP you do brighten my days. That is when you are not being controversial when you make me exercise my (very) little grey cells. Actually I think Graham Edwards is probably very common. There were 3 patients with that name registered at the medical practice I attended in New Zealand. An acquaintance was also called Graham Edwards. However I suspect there are fewer Graham Barry Edwardses. (I never used my middle name for any official purpose in New Zealand).

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    2. Perhaps you were conceived during a wild weekend at Barry Island.

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    3. Somehow, YP, I don't associate my parents with wild weekends but then .........

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  11. Really glad you are able to get home for a while... you must be exhausted after all that stuff happening. I am sure they will have better luck next time or perhaps they can whip it out? One good kidney is all you need..... was good to chat anyway - thinking of you - from The Young'un :)

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    1. Thank you Young'un! Your chat cheered me up.

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  12. Oh dear that sounds awfully grim and you sound stoic. I hope it will be successful next time. All the best, keep strong.

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    1. Thanks Diane. It was grim and is still a bit grim but, you know what? Just about everyone who passed through the ward whilst I was in it was worse off, so I'm playing the Glad Game.

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  13. You really seem to have had more than your share of bad luck, Graham. What's the next move for you? I hope you are comfortable enough to enjoy your sojourn back at home and in your own bed.

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    1. Frances, my aim is simply to enjoy a wee rest at a friend's until the journey home on Saturday. That'll be a full day's travelling by car.

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  14. Hope your journey back home won't be too tiring, and I wish you a period of rest and healing at home before you need to go back for the next procedure. I first read this post on my phone a couple of days ago, just back myself from a routine screening procedure, which had also made me reflect on how things had changed over the past 20 years or so. Back then, the scans used to involve 1. registration by a receptionist 2. an interview with a nurse (in a separate room) and 3. two nurses or assistants handling the x-ray machine procedure. Now I was met by a (new) self-registration touch-screen; and then only one nurse (or whatever her title) to handle all the rest. Efficient, and I have no complaint; it just kind of made me wonder if some day in the future it will all be completely automatic - "self-scanning"... ;)

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    1. Monica, thanks for your good wishes (my journey home was uneventful) and for an insight into the Swedish health service..

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  15. Medical science has come a huge way over the last century or so, it's quite amazing what can be done now. Hopefully you're now on the mend.

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    1. Thanks Amy. I’m home now and taking stock until the next visit in December.

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  16. Hope you made it home safe GB.

    Will keep our fingers crossed that the next attempt to remove the stone is successful. I think I'd probably have named the thing by now if I were you!

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    1. Thanks Helen. Driving is one of the few comfortable positions so the journey home was a pleasure. Ah. A name? That’s an idea. I’ve decided on ‘Cal’.

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    2. Cal as in Callanish? Very appropriate!

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    1. Fi, I was, as you now know, ignorant of that.

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