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Thread: How Do You Know When To Go To The ER?

  1. #1

    How Do You Know When To Go To The ER?

    Symptoms: Extreme fatigue (difficulty staying awake), depression (crying easily), feeling anxious/overwhelmed, vertigo (it's getting extreme), nausea, persistent headache in right side of head (top of head and temple), pressure behind right eye, alternating numbness and pain in right side of face.

    Situation: I've had a demylenating lesion on my brain stem before and was told that the lesion was consistent with MS, but I have not been "officially" diagnosed. I've already been to the emergency room about two weeks ago for the pain and numbness. They did an EKG and CAT scan. Said there was nothing wrong with me and sent me on my way. Since that time, my pain management doctor said I had occipital neuralgia and gave me nerve blocks. They helped with the pain in my head, but my other symptoms seem to be getting worse.

    I have an appointment with my neurologist scheduled for this Wednesday, but I'm really wondering if I should go back to the ER today? I fear if I do, they'll just blow me off and it will be a waste of my time. I'm home alone, don't feel like I can drive myself to the ER, and at times, I feel like I might pass out. Opinions?
    "The truth will set you free. But first, it will piss you off." -Gloria Steinem

  2. #2
    Call your physician and ask to speak to him/her (or the physician who is covering for them) and then follow their advice. Although you are in quite a bit of pain, it is unlikely that the ER would do anything but mark your chart as a drug seeker. Call your physician back on Monday AM to see if they can see you sooner than Wednesday otherwise.


  3. #3
    I think you should go immediately as it sounds like you have some serious new symptoms. If they blow you off it says way more about the hospital than it does about your concerns. Get going to the hospital and good luck.

  4. #4
    I think KLD is right - ER's tend to treat people with pain as 'drug seekers' and the more times you go, the more they ignore you hoping you won't bother them again. Cruel, but tends to be true around these parts. Rest,drink fluids, call your MD. Sorry couldn't be more help.

  5. #5
    Sorry I never updated this thread. I went to the ER. They did check me out pretty well. I think one reason they took me seriously is because my oxygen level was quite low--no explanation--so they had to start giving me O2 and an IV as soon as I got there. I think ER's only take you seriously if (1) you're not breathing correctly (2) your heart's not beating in a normal rhythm or (3) you're bleeding all over their floor...

    Anyway, they did treat the vertigo and I followed up later with my pain management doctor and neurologist (who prescribed a different medication for my vertigo).
    "The truth will set you free. But first, it will piss you off." -Gloria Steinem

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