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Column: An Easter emergency to remember
Easter weekend, I debated whether to watch a DVD or go to a movie. Either way, I was going to have a relaxing holiday weekend. All that changed when I experienced the worst pain of my life and ended up in the ER.
I’m in the shower when the most intense pain hits my stomach. It had me doubled over, shaking and gasping for breath. My first thought was that my appendix had burst, so I hurry out of the shower and call mom at her second job. She knows many medical ailments and I wanted to get her opinion before I rushed off to the emergency room. Main reason being that I do not have insurance and was worried about the cost of making that trip. (It’s a sad state when you’re in so much pain and the thought of paying off medical bills enters your head and makes you not want to go.)
While talking to her, I decided I needed to go. Luckily, my sister was around to take me to the closest Urgent Care.
We got there around 4:30 p.m. and I was taken into the back room around…actually I don’t know the time I got back to see the doctor on call. I spent most of the time bowing down before the porcelain god because of the pain. Yuck. I hate getting sick, and I did it plenty there - so sorry, people on duty.
When the doctor came into the room to see me, I was curled up in a shivering ball, clutching at my stomach and moaning. I knew I probably looked pathetic but I just didn’t care. That position was the only thing that felt comfortable.
He tells me what he thinks is ailing me, but they don’t have the technology to positively diagnosis me and because of that, can’t give me any pain medication, so I should go to the emergency room. Argh!
It feels like a lifetime of torture before I make it to the closest hospital. One thing I thought was funny was when I was walking to a seat in the waiting room, there was a guy walking in my path. I must have looked a fright because he stopped and let me pass. He actually apologized for almost getting in my way. I had a picture in my head of me as a hobbled zombie.
Suspicions of the zombie look-alike were confirmed when the doctor asked my mother in the hospital room if I was always this pale. Now, I know I have fair skin, but when you spend most of your day upchucking and in pain, you’re not going to look like you just spent a day frolicking in the sun. Plus, fluorescent lighting is no one’s friend.
Around 8:30 p.m., they wheel me into a room where I’m to have a Spiral CT (Computed Tomography) Scan. At this point, I’m lightly medicated and sort of freaked out because this thing looks like something from “Star Trek.”
Luckily, the scan was over quickly and I was wheeled back into my room where I awaited results. I got a weird fluid injected into my veins that was ice cold and then extremely warm. My poor arms. My left one looks like I had illicit affair with a vampire.
I was dozing off when the doctor came in and put the image of my insides on my stomach. I wondered how insides could be on paper when he starts explaining all the parts. Then he points to a little speck and says, “This is your kidney stone, the cause of all your problems.”
It’s amazing that something so little could be the cause of the most searing pain ever experienced. I remember hearing kidney stones cause more pain than childbirth.
I am able to go home around 10:15 p.m. with a prescription to help the pain. I fall asleep around 1 a.m., only to wake up at 6:30 a.m. with intense pain due to the rolling stone.
The stone passed the following morning without incident. Now, I have my own Easter miracle!
Dedra Cordle is a Messenger staff writer.
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