Sunday, October 03, 2010

Reason For The Nurse Practitioner Place Post Delay

Hello to my faithful readers! I haven't posted in a long while due to a wrist/hand injury a year ago that has been progressively getting worse. After a couple of MRIs, one of which was an arthrogram, a simple x-ray answered the million dollar question. The thumbs are not sitting in their sockets and my right hand has been killing me with all of the writing. Lo and behold, after the orthopedic surgeon got in there, he discovered that the capsule was torn and the ligament had to tight-wired back together with two permanent metal buttons.
I figured that the surgery would be an easy one. I had already done two natural childbirths, a hysterectomy, and two arthroscopic knees without more than Darvcocet.
Well, when the regional block wore off, all hell broke loose in the old pain receptors! I have NEVER felt that much pain in my entire life. I now know why people sue for pain and suffering. I also figured out all the little things that you can't do left handed very well. I'll let you imagine the details for yourself.
In other news, my younger sister had an atypical heart attack at the ripe old age of 38. She told me that she was having some epigastric fullness/pressure and wasn't feeling well. She took some stomach acid reliever and felt better and went to bed. The next morning I told her to come to my office and see the doc and get an EKG done just to check things out. Well... the EKG was abnormal and off to the hospital she went and when I got there, the doctor was waiting on her labs to come back. She had no IV running and was just sitting there in no particular pain other than some pressure and small twinge that was near the left shoulder. I told her that I would check out the EKG with the ER doc and see what the plan was. Off I went for him to say that the EKG looked slightly abnormal and that he would keep her overnight to monitor. I felt better due to the fact that she had no insurance and I was worried that he would just treat and street her as "another typical female anxiety attack".
I went upstairs to see who was working that night and to say hello to some nurses that I hadn't seen in a long time. I ran into one of the docs and he asked me why I was there and then asked to see my sister's EKG for us to evaluate together. I thought that it was a good idea because the one I had seen didn't seem to impress the other doc and a second opinion wouldn't hurt. He took one look and showed me just how back it was and picked up the phone and told the ER doc to fly her out. Okay.....
Back to the ER where her nurse was now in high alert mode... 325 of aspirin, 600mg of Plavix, and a heparin drip was the new cocktail. The nurse looked like she was ready to spook. I asked her how high the Troponin and CPK were and she said 10.9 (high normal 0.4) and that her CPK was 497. Full blown heart attack was commencing and still no increase in pain and her blood pressure was completely normal at 110/69. Still my sister is sitting there with a silly grin on her face as I explain what the commotion was all about. The smile disappeared when the helicopter flight team showed up to take her to Gainesville.
Cardiac cath showed the RCA 100% blocked, the LAD was 99% and the circuflex was 50%. They were a little surprised but were able to get two stents into the RCA and the plan is to do the bypass on the LAD in a few weeks if her ejection fraction holds. (currently 35%).

Word to the wise, never ever discount a female having just pressure and a little bit of chest pain as "just another anxiety attack". Someone can die.

I have already checked my cholesterol levels and plan to have a stress test done sometime soon so don't worry about the fate of The Nurse Practitioner's Place for now!


  1. Hope you are recovering... and YIKES about your sister!!! What if you'd not told her to come see you at the office? What if she'd been sent home? And copter flight and all that major surgery w/o ins... double YIKES... can she maybe get medically needy at least to cover that? Hope she is better soon too!

  2. WOW! That is truly incredible. So glad you got your sister the help she needed. And that she was compliant, too. My family members seem to drag their feet when I offer advice, even if solicited.

    Year two of FNP school. Hanging in there.

  3. Blessing to both you and your sister! I hope both of you are recovering well. Please keep us all posted.


  4. Lisa, She is still working on her disability paperwork so that she can have her surgery and get back to work. That helicopter ride sure woke her up!

  5. T Rex Mom, I am so glad to see that you are continuing your 2nd year and I hope that it is going well for you! My family asks for my advice and sometimes it's taken. It's hard being the family provider, especially from long distance.

  6. Thanks for the blessings Barb! I hope to get back onto your site soon!

  7. Points to this post..Very informative and reliable and can be helpful to many..Thanks for sharing.