Daily Archives: October 29, 2009

In which I lose all self-respect

Hello, I’m back, I’m writing this in the comfort of my very own armchair, drinking flat ginger ale out of my very own glass, wearing (thank God) my very own pyjamas. Aaaaaand…. breathe.

Well, that sucked. As H said, yesterday I was sitting about at home, minding my own very gloomy miserable business, when I noticed the bleeding getting more-so. Fair enough, I am having a miscarriage. The pain is getting more-so too. Only to be expected. Only, hang on, surely, this is just a little much? This pain, this bleeding, a bit fucking much? And at the point where I collapsed on the bed sobbing and howling in a manner that makes me feel quite pink with embarrassment to recall, H decided, that is enough. And started calling in medical assistance. I have no idea who said what to whom about what and when, as by this point I was kneeling on the bathroom floor with my head in the toilet. Oh, joy. And then there was an almost-pleasant-in-comparison interval while I lay on my face, thinking ‘holy hell, when did I last mop in here? This floor is disgusting‘ while H ran about finding clothes to stuff me into and books and keys and phones and a bag and whathaveyou while waiting for the ambulance.

The gas and air in said ambulance was very nice, by the way, once they’d solved the air-lock in the feed which had the mouthpiece making a hideously funny farting noise every time I sucked on it. The pain was still going on, but it was happening to some other poor unfortunate woman just over there, so that was all right (I remember pethidine having much the same effect on me). I was aware that my undercarriage was very very wet, downright soggy, even, and possibly this was cause for concern, but hey! gas and air says relax!

When the ambulance driver was helping me roll from their trolley-bed onto the hospital trolley bed she said ‘oh! You’re actively bleeding, aren’t you!’ and I was alas too stoned to say ‘nooooo, I’m definitely passively bleeding… I’m just lying here getting you to do all the heavy lifting…’ Then the gas and air wore off (the cruel brutes were taking the cyclinder back to the ambulance with them, as if anyone else needed it more than me, HAH) and I realised that in the 30 to 40 minutes we’d been in the ambulance (they were taking us back to the hospital that released me the day before, hence long drive), I had bled through a super-duper heavy flow pad, the track-suit bottoms H had shuffled me into, the thick towelling dressing-gown ditto, the ambulance blanket, the sheet, and onto the trolley.

Yes, I know. Yuk. Exactly.

Anyway, this sort of thing gets the attention of the A&E doctors fairly sharpish, and I was being peeled out of my sodden clothes and put into a hospital gown in short order. My blood pressure had dropped, not catastrophically (or I suppose they’d’ve been ripping me open looking for internal bleeding), but definitely, so they got a drip in – the poor nurse had to dig for a vein, what with mine all being half-empty and pathetic, and I even noticed that it bloody hurt despite Cute Ute ramping up the hysterics. And then the on-call gynae doctor turned up, and she was very nice, and announced she was going to examine me internally, at which point H firmly announced he was going outside to find a glass of water. I think he’d had about as much gore and sobbing as he could take, poor lamb.

Cue unpleasant episode with speculum, swabs, tweezers, and so on.

Gynae doctor finally explained that she thought a piece of pregnancy tissue had got stuck in the cervix, and all the massive cramps, bleeding, vomiting and horrible horrible blood-clots where the Cute Ute’s attempts to get it out (cervixes are fussy like that). It had gone now, anyway. And finally, here was some codeine to make it all better, and a bed in a private room to feel all better on. And poor H, who had reappeared when the exam was over and had been holding my hand and carrying bags of my blood-stained clothes about, was allowed to go home.

Today started quite well. The sweet doctor who had diagnosed the not-ectopic-after-all reappeared, and there was talk of scans and second opinions. I felt… OK. Sore, but OK. I read my book. I dutifully used bed-pans so the nurses could check the amount of fluid coming out of me was matching the amount going in, and (urgh urgh urgh) keep an eye on the blood-clots to make sure I was passing pregnancy tissue, as they kept calling it. I was. Urgh.

By lunch time everything was going tits-up again. The sweet doctor and the nurses had got all at cross-purposes, and no-one knew who was doing what with me when, or, at least, certainly not bothering to explain it to me. H called the ward at midday to ask after me, but they didn’t bother to tell me that, and I was wondering where the hell he was. They told him I had had a scan (I so had not) and a second opinion was needed (actually, sweet doctor wanted a second opinion to decide if there was any need to do a scan). H called back at 2, and no one told him that I was asking for him, ohh, no, and then no one told me that H said he’d be along at some point later that afternoon, so I was getting quite stressed on the ‘where the buggery fuck is my bloody husband?’ scale. This was all compounded by the fact the pain was back, in spades, with added burningness and tenderness, and by the time I drew the nurses’ attention to this and she finally got around to finding some more codeine, I was having a ‘pain peak’ in the cute phrase of the sweet doctor and neither codeine nor diclofenac could control it.

In short, gentle readers, I panicked, and cried. Again. Which sucked.

Luckily, sweet doctor had been collecting together all my blood and urine test results and had found her second opinion and came back to find me tear-stained and dishevelled (thank GOD for the private room, eh?) and in need of reassurance. So she gave it. The blood test (the Beta, you call it in the States) was under 5, and the pee-stick was negative, and there was no danger of a lingering ectopic they’d missed. The cramps were certainly caused by the passing of the ‘pregnancy tissue’ and would get better over the next few days, as should the bleeding.

As for the rather extreme nature of the pain I was in? Umm, well, it would seem I had managed to pick up a urinary tract infection on top of everything else. The burning pain? Err, that was that. Made worse by pressing on a wildly cramping uterus and all the general prostaglandin excess in the area.

The indignity of it. A feckin’ UTI. I cried like a terrified six-year-old over a UTI. I will now burst into flames of shame. *foom*

And, naturally, having discovered that the reason I was feverish, with a racing pulse, cramping and aching horribly, and feeling like I’d been run over by a small-to-medium sized tractor, was a mere UTI (oh, and some mere serious blood-loss), and not internal bleeding or a ruptured ovary or John Hurt’s Alien heading for fresh air and daylight, I cheered the fuck up and felt much much better. And then H turned up, and I felt better still. So much so that they agreed I could go home, with a big pile of antibiotics and pain-killers, and lots of warnings about coming straight back if I got worse again (or panicked myself into hysterics again. Hah hah).

Embarrassing, really, to discover just how much you can aggravate your own physical pain by being terrified and miserable. Also, my famous posh British stiff upper lip? I’ve lost it. I shall have to make do with a fake mustache.

Anyway, Gentle Readers, I love you all. Thank you a thousand times for the support and comments.

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Limbo, take two (update from H)

Another quick update for those who want to keep track of progress.

Just spoken to the ward. May has had a scan this afternoon, but the Gynae is not happy and is seeking a more senior second opinion and may want another scan/futher treatment. They’re taking it all one step at a time, which is fair enough, but very frustrating too.

I’m going down to visit May now and take clean clothes, apples and (most importantly) chocolate. I will pass on all your good wishes and kind thoughts. Blessings from the deity of your choice/good karma for you all.

H


And then it got worse (update from H)

It’s 3am I’m just back from hospital where May is being kept overnight for observation. Throughout the day pain and bleeding worsened. By 9pm pain killers were obviously totally ineffective, so I called the out-of-hours GP service (completely useless), by the time they called back May was throwing up, so I called an ambulance.

Ambulance driver took the extra long route (blindly following the very badly designed Sat Nav that either didn’t really give proper turning warnings alternating with requesting turns too soon – probably not helped by the sudden appearance of a rather heavy, gothic type fog over our area of the city). Just as well gas and air was on tap and helped a bit.

We finally got there at 11:40pm to find blood soaked through everything. They took away gas & air, but nurse as May asked for something for the pain brought a paracetamol(!) – talk about trying to swat a pterodactyl with a feather. After going through full medical history for a fifth time in two days (I think I shall take printed handouts next time). May was finally given some proper pain relief and admitted to the ward at 1:30am

Fingers crossed no surgery needed this time, but Gynae said if she was still bleeding tomorrow she’d be prepped for it.

Just a personal thank you for all your kind words and thoughts.

H