U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Health and Wellness
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 04-02-2011, 11:05 PM
 
Location: too far from the sea
18,506 posts, read 17,671,715 times
Reputation: 31125

Advertisements

I'm trying to understand and get some answers.

Recently I was scheduled for a colonoscopy, did the prep the day before and the next day until the appt at 2:30 pm. When I was seen at 3:30 they said I had no detectable blood pressure!!!!!!!!!!!

They tried to rehydrate me with IVs but it didn't work. Finally I was sent to the ER and it still didn't work--no detectable blood pressure.

Then I was admitted to the hospital. I am 67 yrs old and I think I must have been placed in geriatric because they asked me a long list of questions about using a walker or a cane, a hearing aid, joint replacements---questions I have never been asked before.

Anyway, all night long they kept giving me IVs and still I had undetectable blood pressure. I kept asking them what they were going to do next but they said they didn't know. I got really scared the longer this went on.

At 3 am there were about 6 people in my hospital room all asking each other what they should do!

One said to call the doctor. So they did. Then they called him again. At about 6 am they said they said someone had suggested they try cortisol because a lack of it can cause low blood pressure--I said okay, I hope it works.

Then about 7 am they took me to Intensive Care and a little while later someone put a blood pressure cuff on my LEG and detected a little bit of blood pressure.

Then doctors started coming in. The first one said--you always have undetectable blood pressure, don't you! I said, NO. AND I JUST HAD NORMAL BLOOD PRESSURE A FEW DAYS AGO AT THE DOCTORS.

The next doctor said--when you have NORMAL blood pressure, it's because you always have your blood pressure taken in your leg, right? I said, NO. I HAVE IT TAKEN IN MY ARM AND I HAVE NEVER EVEN HEARD OF HAVING IT TAKEN IN MY LEG.

The next doctor said--They probably used a faulty blood pressure cuff last night on you. I said--NO. THEY TRIED SEVERAL.

The next doctor said--There could have been a hospital power failure last night and they couldn't read your blood pressure. The nurse standing next to me said NO.

Anyway, after more IVs my blood pressure got better. Then I was allowed to eat and I felt happier.

But TODAY. NOW IT IS HITTING ME--like what the HELL was that all about?

I'm scared. My husband now says that a nurse told him I almost died.

What was the reason for all those crazy questions from the doctors? Cover their tails? for what? Something went wrong that they were trying to cover up? But what?

My husband thinks that it's because I should have been sent to intensive care A LOT SOONER.

Now I can't even sleep tonight, thinking about this nightmare. That long scary night in that hospital room with all of them wondering what to do. Me, crying and asking them questions and trying to pray at the same time. Is there anyone who has a clue as to what this was all about? Also, is there anything I should do?

TIA
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 04-03-2011, 12:03 AM
 
Location: Syracuse IS Central New York.
8,517 posts, read 3,857,696 times
Reputation: 4011
What a bizarre story! Apparently you must have had some blood pressure, as you were speaking to them and sounds like you were feeling relatively ok. Could they even find a pulse?

I'm going to ask this as delicately as I possibly can, are you overweight? Sometimes it is harder to get a blood pressure on an overweight person. You have to use a larger size cuff, and the cuff cord can't have any cracks. It's also harder to find a pulse, but both can be done. And I've done it.

As for the admission questions, about your mobility, using a walker. Those are fairly standard questions for anyone. The hospital is trying to establish what your baseline is at home, usually referred to as Activities of Daily Living or ADL's. These are used as guidelines for your discharge. Yes, hospitals start planning your discharge upon admission. As for not sending you immediately to ICU, the hospital generally observes you for a while in the ER which has (or should have) much of the same equipment and staffing. Sometimes there is no bed immediately available in ICU either and patients have to be shuffled around. The care is similar between the ER and ICU actually.

What may have happened is that the prep for the colonoscopy made you very dehydrated and with a loss of electrolytes. With dehydration there is less fluid in the body, and you become hypovolemic. (hypo=less, volemic=volume) which means there was less volume in your circulatory system. This can make your blood pressure very, very low and nearly impossible to detect if it gets low enough.

It annoys me that the medical staff indicated that they "didn't know what to do" in front of a conscious patient. Even if you were unconscious this should be taken out of ear shot, because even seemingly unconscious patients have some idea of what's going on around them. By any chance, was this a very small, rural hospital?

I really do believe that the colonoscopy prep made you exceptionally dehydrated and that accounts for the seemingly lack of Blood pressure, when in actuality you just had a very low BP that was undetectable. Had to have a BP, or otherwise you wouldn't be posting here on C-D today.

Hope you are feeling better after all this. Keep drinking lots of water. Definitely go see your Primary Care Physician to discuss this, and to discuss your blood pressure in general. You may want to more closely monitor your blood pressure for a while.

That's my take on all of this.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-03-2011, 12:03 AM
 
12,620 posts, read 17,851,085 times
Reputation: 2988
I would go to a different hospital! Call one of your other Dr's tell them what is going on and see what they say? I hope you are ok.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-03-2011, 01:04 AM
 
Location: Hawaii
1,681 posts, read 3,655,991 times
Reputation: 3051
I don't like saying this but as a health care professional I have seen some really dumb nurses. When they didn't get the BP in your arm they should have taken it in your thigh (and don't get me started on you need a thigh cuff to do it). It sounds like a circus and I wouldn't want to go back there. The questions they asked you were general knowledge questions along with do you have a living will etc...

Hope all is well
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-03-2011, 01:54 AM
 
Location: state of procrastination
3,487 posts, read 6,201,179 times
Reputation: 2884
Sounds like a whole lot of incompetence, but no malpractice. If you were walking and talking and not feeling any dizziness, likely your BP was fine. I once had a detectable BP of 40/20 and I was literally almost dead. At that point I could not sit up without getting extremely dizzy and nauseous. They should have done it manually instead of with a machine if they were having troubles with the reading. They should have checked your pulses manually or with Doppler if there was any concern.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-03-2011, 07:56 AM
 
Location: In a house
13,258 posts, read 35,163,119 times
Reputation: 20198
The same thing happened to my grandmother when she went in for a blood transfusion. They weren't able to detect her blood pressure. It's important to understand something though...

This does NOT mean "she has no blood pressure."
It DOES mean "We can't find her blood pressure."

It's there, they just can't get the reading. As the second poster posted, you probably had become hypervolemic due to dehydration, which would make it difficult to get a reading.

I also agree with the second poster, that they should not have been making guesses in front of you. All that does is scare the patient. They should have stepped out of the room to confer.

Other than that, everything sounds pretty much like they were -doing- what they needed to do. It was just the whole discussion while you were present that they shouldn't have done.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-03-2011, 09:15 AM
 
Location: too far from the sea
18,506 posts, read 17,671,715 times
Reputation: 31125
Thank you for the input. It helps just to have a few answers and opinions--I feel calmer now.

No, I am not overweight at all. In fact, my arms are thin. Yes, they did try to get the bp manually--they kept talking about doppler and they couldn't get a reading even then. They could not find a pulse. They tried to get bp reading in my lower leg. This was all on the ward where I was kept for the scary night.

This was not a small rural hospital, this was a regular hospital in the Boston area.

What is still disturbing to me is that I was not in the ER for those 14 hours, I was just in a room on a ward. Maybe there was no space in the intensive care unit, I don't know.

With further hydration in the ICU, my bp eventually got better. I also felt a whole lot safer there as they seemed to know what they were doing. They too tried the doppler and also couldn't get a pulse. They also said immediately that my bp was normal now--the minute I got there! I said how could THAT be true all of a sudden?

They said--better equipment in the ICU. Took about a minute and I'm better??? But they still proceeded to find my bp and afterward they kept saying they still couldn't find it. Seems I was being told stories by these people, not the truth.

I'll never go back to that hospital. That means giving up my new doctor who came highly recommended but that's the hospital she uses. But I don't even want to SEE that hospital again.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-03-2011, 10:54 AM
 
Location: Neither here nor there
14,810 posts, read 13,713,444 times
Reputation: 32928
This is really odd. As a nurse, myself, I know how hard it is sometimes to get a good BP reading, especially using a manual BP monitor. Were they using the electronic BP monitors? Those are usually so sensitive that some kind of reading is possible. The fact that you were awake and lucid all this time tells me that your heart was pumping away and your brain was getting enough oxygen. Maybe it was just a case of severe dehydration and all you needed was more fluids.

Glad you are OK and there was no permanent damage.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-03-2011, 12:53 PM
 
Location: Syracuse IS Central New York.
8,517 posts, read 3,857,696 times
Reputation: 4011
Thought about this later on. You said you did the prep the day before, but your appointment wasn't until 2:30, and the whole circus with the BP started at 3:30. That's a very long time to be without fluid intake, plus the electrolyte disturbance from the colonscopy prep.

I know that when I had my own colonoscopy, the prep was the day and night before, but my appointment was much earlier in the morning. I was on an IV by 9AM at the latest. Those extra hours only served to get you even more dehydrated.

While it can be difficult to do a manual BP, it's not that hard really. As for the pulse, so many places you can check for one. Even listen through a stethoscope for crying out loud. Since you were obviously warm to the touch, and coherent (meaning your oxygen level was acceptable), you obviously had a heart beat.

It sounds like the IV fluid replacement is what you really needed. Personally, I think I would avoid this comedy-of-errors-hospital and doctor as well-who really should rethink what the colonoscopy prep directions should be for a 2:30-3:30 time of appointment. The amount of time someone is dehydrated and has electrolyte imbalance should be minimized for the colonoscopy procedure.

Glad to hear that you are feeling better and are calming down over this event.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-03-2011, 01:52 PM
 
Location: too far from the sea
18,506 posts, read 17,671,715 times
Reputation: 31125
Quote:
Originally Posted by Easybreezy View Post
Thought about this later on. You said you did the prep the day before, but your appointment wasn't until 2:30, and the whole circus with the BP started at 3:30. That's a very long time to be without fluid intake, plus the electrolyte disturbance from the colonscopy prep.

I know that when I had my own colonoscopy, the prep was the day and night before, but my appointment was much earlier in the morning. I was on an IV by 9AM at the latest. Those extra hours only served to get you even more dehydrated.

While it can be difficult to do a manual BP, it's not that hard really. As for the pulse, so many places you can check for one. Even listen through a stethoscope for crying out loud. Since you were obviously warm to the touch, and coherent (meaning your oxygen level was acceptable), you obviously had a heart beat.

It sounds like the IV fluid replacement is what you really needed. Personally, I think I would avoid this comedy-of-errors-hospital and doctor as well-who really should rethink what the colonoscopy prep directions should be for a 2:30-3:30 time of appointment. The amount of time someone is dehydrated and has electrolyte imbalance should be minimized for the colonoscopy procedure.

Glad to hear that you are feeling better and are calming down over this event.
Thank you for your thoughts. Yes, I too believe that it was due to the long wait before the colonoscopy. I even thought the day I was doing the prep that this seemed "dangerous." Then to stop fluids at 4 am after losing so much fluid from the Miralax and not be seen until 3:30--no wonder.

They were constantly trying to rehydrate me but it wasn't having any effect, at least not that they could see. I had IV after IV after IV, something called bolus.

I'm finding that everyone has horror stories to tell about hospitals, around here anyway. This is the Boston area and it's supposed to have great hospitals but that hasn't been my experience. It's more about money and cover your tail. I'm starting to calm down and to think about changes to make.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply

Quick Reply
Message:


Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Health and Wellness
Similar Threads
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2019, Advameg, Inc.

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top