Unfortunately, this is H writing at 5am having just walked back from the hospital – they have kept May overnight to ‘manage the pain’, but they hadn’t made great progress when I left.
I thought the walk would clear my head and let me sleep, but it only seems to have woken me up. On the plus side at least I didn’t have to walk back in the dark, the dawn chorus was pretty, the honeysuckle smelt divine and the night bus only passed me a couple of minutes from home (so I didn’t feel quite so silly having forgotten to pick up travel card in the dash to get into the ambulance).
Sorry, you’re probably panicking now – I’m not sure what I can say to allay concerns, as we do not know the cause at this point – the doctors may, but they weren’t sharing any results with us in the small hours. Here follows a detailed account of our long night with no sleep and many repetitions – I will not be offended if you skim, but I need to get it off my chest if nothing else.
The pain started getting worse after lunch – sporadic uterine cramping like bad periods. By evening May could hardly get up and the maximum does of Co-codamol was not making any impression after an hour (10:30pm), so I phoned the GP out-of-hours line and relayed the situation to the call handler , she took our phone number and promised a Dr would call back.
About 20 minutes later a nurse called, I tried to explain the situation again, but she insisted on speaking to May personally – May managed to crawl to the phone and whimper some answers making it quite clear the strong pain-killers were not, the best suggestion from this nurse was to try a hot-water-bottle (May had abandoned that approach an hour previous) . A home visit was promised by a doctor who could prescribe something stronger (not that a prescription would have been helpful just after midnight on a Saturday).
After a further 20 minutes we got a phone call from a doctor on a very bad line, probably some call centre in Outer Mongolia and I had to relay situation again . He declared there was nothing that he could provide in person and therefore would arrange for an ambulance (ambulance and A&E staff not impressed that no proper visit had been done, the driver even quipping that the phone call would earn Dr £100 and he didn’t even need to venture out of his cosy office – probably air-conditioned, it was a very barmy, stuffy night.) His reasoning was that if May went back to said hospital – they will have all her notes. Hah!
Just before midnight the ambulance duly arrived and required the full recounting of situation for their paperwork with lots of colour-coded boxes . They offered May gas and air, but she didn’t really feel like trying it with the risk of it inducing vomiting – was slightly disappointed that the offer was not extended to me.
At A&E the ambulance crew very sketchily relayed the situation to the reception desk – I had to bite my tongue to not interfere and give a better account [4.5] and we were put in a room to start the requisite waiting period. I lost track of time at this point there was far to much happening (not involving us) and hand-holding taking my attention.
After a while what looked like a porter came in and did the blood pressure and temperature checks again (having been given them from the ambulance, do they not trust them? to be ‘fair’ it had been a while, so things may have changed). Another while of increasing pain a nurse came and introduced herself and promptly asked “so, your 7 weeks pregnant?” – it was probably lucky May was in such pain that all she only snarled back “not any more” . May also managed to emphasis pain and the nurse quickly scuttled away announcing a doctor would see her ‘soon’ and muttering something about a line being required before I managed to recoup my wits and say anything. Now this is partly to do with the sketchy hand-over, but they had access to the full written account from the ambulance crew too *sigh*.
A very chirpy and petite doctor attended in due course and we started the story again , she did a more thorough physical examination concluded that May did indeed have uterine pain *sob* (do people really make these symptoms up) and took about a dozen vials of blood for ‘testing’ meanwhile setting up the line. She left promising pain more pain relief would be forthcoming as it was now just into the window of not overdosing (indeed when she left I dug out my mobile and it was 1:30am). A few minutes later a new nurse appeared with pills: 2xcodiene (I think these were the minute ones), 2xparacetemol (standard size) and 1xlarge brown one with a name I didn’t quite catch, but sounded something like dixi-lickso. The gynae doctor was also summonsed.
Our nurse reappeared and cheerfully as if nothing was wrong set up a saline drip and said the gynae doctor would arrive hopefully within an hour and the blood test results would also have been stewed by then. The new set of pain-killers were just about starting to take the edge off when gynae doctor arrived. You guessed it, the story was required again from scratch . A lot of prodding, internal scraping and faffing then ensued before she declared that May would be kept overnight, so pain could be ‘managed’, that she would be transferred to a ward and asked us if we had any questions. Our thought processes were not functioning by this point, so I didn’t think until half-way home “what were the results of all the blood tests?”
May was eventually collected for transfer and another drip attached with Hartmann’s solution, we arrived at the ward just before 4am by torchlight so as not to disturb the other occupants, although the amount of noise would have anyway. Once May had settled I had to, at last, wander off into the night morning, which is where we came in about an hour ago creating an infinite loop of repeating, repeating, repeating, zzzz.