Hospitals and Meds...help!

onafixedincome
By onafixedincome Latest Reply 2017-08-13 18:48:53 -0500
Started 2017-07-31 01:48:22 -0500

Okay, after the last go round at the hospital (2 years or so back) when I got the wrong meds and a huge fight, I determined that if I ever went in again, my meds would not leave my control, period. Good thing. Last week I had some truly funky numbness and lightheadedness that landed me at the ER for stroke evaluation (came up negative, thank you gods!) and in overnight.

Discovered that the admitting doc had only ordered insulin based on actual bg, and didn't take food into consideration. The night I went in, I had gotten a sandwich at admission, eaten and dosed, didn't worry about it. Come breakfast time, I ate and waited for them to get my insulin…and two hours later, I threw a fit and dosed anyway. Next time, I know that I will be not only keeping my medication, but that there's a card signed by my doc that details how my diabetes is properly managed.

For those who don't know how the hospital-med thing works, here's what happened.

I detailed the meds I use and need, and noted that I had them with me.
They wanted to take them, put them in the pharmacy—properly labeled—and they would give them to me at the doctor's order based on my 'usual routine'.
I knew from previous experience that this often does not happen, so informed them that no, my meds remained with me, under my control, period, end of discussion.
Once on the ward, I was asked to show them the meds and go through their use so that they could record what I was planning to do/take, and I saw no harm in doing that—after all, they don't want people using street stuff or meds they don't know about—it can affect treatment.
The supervisor then came in and asked me to pinky-swear that I wouldn't use any of those meds without at least telling them about it (I already had, down in the emergency area, so no problem).
None of us thought to discuss insulin-vs-food, so it's as much my fault as theirs.

After breakfast, I asked when I would get my insulin, and was told that just having 'a sliding scale' didn't cover dosing for food; they'd have to contact the pharmacy (which doesn't have any more information than that either) and try the prescribing doctor (on a weekend, right) to authorize it. Now, I want to try at least to follow their rules, so I said okay.

I had to drive when I was released later; if I allowed my sugar to spike as much as it was likely to, I was going to be sleeping, not driving!! So after an hour and a half, I called the nurse in and simply let her know that I was going to dose with my meds. She wasn't happy, but I was very firm (and rather upset at this point-I mean, who doesn't know that diabetics have to dose with meals!?). The final decision was that if I dosed with anything, I would let them know so they could accurately record it, and I have no problem with that.

Upshot? When they called the next day to see how I was doing and get a status report, I let them know that their diabetes management could use some clarification, and that those who had their condition under good control should be allowed to continue doing so as much as possible. The response was positive, so perhaps that won't happen again to someone else.


4 replies

Dr Gary
Dr GaryCA 2017-08-08 22:04:47 -0500 Report

Hi onafixedincome, I will echo the others who responded. What an amazing story. Yet another example of how important it is to be your own best advocate. I am amazed at the stories I hear from my own clients who have had similar experiences. Great ;job! Thanks for sharing this with us.

Type1Lou
Type1Lou 2017-07-31 10:44:33 -0500 Report

Congratulations for standing up for yourself! We are our own best advocates and if we are living well with our diabetes, we know what is best for us. I try to be repectful when discussing this with medical personnel, but will be "politely insistent" if they don't buy into my plan. Hope they take your comments to heart and happy that you got through this well.