Saturday, January 03, 2009

Can You Say Malpractice?

My mother had a quad bypass surgery a few years ago and has done pretty well since. Over the last year, she has become more fatigued and started having anginal pains. After her last check up, her cardiologist told her that two of the four are collapsing and she isn't a surgical candidate.
The last time I had talked to her was Christmas Day and she told me that she was having more chest pains and wasn't feeling well but didn't want to worry my sister. One has to understand my sister (affectionately known as "the freaker") who would fall down and scream her head off at the slightest hint of blood and threw temper tantrums on the drop of a hat. She always calls me and tells me that Mom doesn't look good and she's sure that she's on her last legs.
I usually call Mom and she tells me that she's doing as well as can be expected. We've talked about some of the important stuff like funeral arrangements, which she has pre-paid for, and we joked about visitation rights for her ashes between the four girls. I asked her to make a list of which items that she wanted given to each of the daughters, grandkids, etc. in order to make things easier. Nothing is worse than having to figure out what someone wanted done.
Up to today's events.... Mom's blood pressure dropped for some reason and she decided that to go into the hospital for a little tune up. The only problem is that it's the weekend and we all know what happens if you are unlucky enough to be in the hospital when your own MD is out of town. The covering doc decided to put my Mom through a stress test.

WHAT THE *&^%! Why would you put someone who's bypasses are failing through a DIAGNOSTIC test? We ALREADY know that her heart isn't working properly. She's not a surgical candidate according to her cardiac surgeon. What in the hell is a stress test going to tell us? HMMMMM????? Besides the increased risk on inducing a heart attack?? I guess if you gotta rack up some dough for the hospital, go ahead, but not at the expense of potentially killing someone?

Luckily for the hospital, she survived the episode and will be discharged soon. I hope that her cardiologist reams his associate a new one when he returns to the country from Israel. She should have been discharged after she was stabilized if her regular doc wasn't there to call the shots.

I know that she is scared of dying. I think that everyone is. I hope that when she does, it's a very fast event that doesn't hurt too much. It's all we can hope for.