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Surgery Rescheduled!

Kathy G.'s picture
Kathy G.
Posts: 116
Joined: Dec 2012

Hello Everyone!

 

I am SO glad I have this board to sound off on b/c I am SO pissed off!

My surgery was scheduled for this morning at 8am. I developed a cold over the weekend that got worse by Sunday so I called the surgeon to see what to do. He told me to take Tylenol Cold medicine and still report in.

I am feeling like a truck ran over me after doing the bowel treatment, having the cold, little sleep, and anxiety taking over on the 5am drive up to the hospital. We check in, and shortly afterwards a nurse calls us into the hallway. She says she is 'confused' b/c my surgery had been rescheduled for next MONTH...didn't the surgeon's office call me Friday?

NO THEY DID NOT!!!

She sees I am upset and asks me to have a seat while 'she checks this out.' Long story short about 2 hours later I leave the hospital with no more information about the reschedule than when I walked in. I am expecting the surgeon's office to call me shortly after they open which is part of why I had to wait almost 2 hours, but nothing comes in. I decide it is up to them to call ME and go to bed when I get home.

I get up around 3pm...still no call! Unbelievable! I call up there and ask why I was never contacted about my surgery being rescheduled. At first she tries to side-step my direct question by telling me it was due to my abnormal EKG and they scheduled me an appt. with a cardiologist for tomorrow...something else I did not know, but when I re-direct the question to her she says they did not have my correct phone number and that is why they could not contact me!

ARE U KIDDIN ME?

I point out the hospital got through to me Friday so they had my number AND they had my husband's cell number so I do NOT understand why I was not contacted. She then says another lady in the office was handling my case and she does not know where the breakdown occurred.

This breakdown in communication is downright scary. I had the EKG done on 12/17/12. I assume the results went to the surgeon'sffice since HE ordered it. Did they lay around until the Friday before surgery when the pre-op screening nurse brought them to the office's attention and then they still did not call me????

Is this who I am trusting my care to? Am I over-reacting? I just cannot wrap my head around this. Yes, I am glad I did not have the surgery since there is a heart issue to consider, but you would think they'd have thier ducks in a better row!

PLEASE, PLEASE give me feedback. I am also ticked about how this has impacted everyone aside from me...my job, my family who took vacation or juggled work schedules to help during my recovery, my husband putting his medical needs and appointments on hold for the next few weeks...this is just crazy..

Anyhow, sorry sooo long, but I had to get this off my chest.

 

Kathy

 

plantlady2012
Posts: 49
Joined: Dec 2012

Wow!  Just wow!  I have no idea what I would do with such a situation!  Will you be able to keep that appointment at the cardiologist tomorrow?  How long will it take them to get results?  I ask, because I wonder why they want to delay the surgery for an entire month.  I would have had a total meltdown if this had happened to me.  I have anxiety probs, and getting through the surgery prep routine was very difficult for me.  I am speechless.  Does the surgeon know what happened to you? I think I would probably avoid confrontation till I calmed down, and then research my options.  You will have more information when you see that cardiologist. 

NorahS
Posts: 93
Joined: Dec 2012

..wow. Unbelievable!

Someone dropped the ball here. Big time.  It's not the rescheduling of surgery (that happens) but that someone apparently knew before the weekend that your surgery would be delayed into February. And they either didn't bother to contact you or made a poor attempt to contact you.

In my view you need to find out who was responsible for not contacting you last week. Finding out at the last minute that your surgery was cancelled inconvenienced not only you, but several other of your friends and family. 

 

 

jazzy1's picture
jazzy1
Posts: 1387
Joined: Mar 2010

I don't think you're over reacting at all.  Sounds like the trail of people working on your case got dropped "somewhere" and at this point, everyone is BLAMING EVERYONE ELSE.  You might really get worked up to even find out what happened, which will cause your more upset.

 

If I'm reading into this correctly your EKG came back with issues and in the end, wouldn't have been able to have the surgery yet?  I can tell you all doctor's offices and hospitals have to keep "excellent and detailed" records.  And...most billing and patient systems have lots of notes.  You might go back to the point where the EKG was done and seems like somewhere in that area the surgery was cancelled, but no one called you.  Now this is what I see, but I could have missed something in your long posting....sorry!

 

In the end, all you can do is work on getting all straight and have all the dates down.  One can always worry about the past, but what can you do now?  It's over and done, so try to get the future more organized and accept the fact "someone screwed up".

 

Again, sorry you had to endure all this crap, but I'll bet you can find a few others out there who've been thru something similar.  Hopefully they come forward and give you some real experience guidance.

 

Breathe in deep and let all the tension out...you deserve better!!

 

Hugs,

Jan

laura25's picture
laura25
Posts: 155
Joined: Mar 2011

Kathy, I'm so sorry.  The added stress is the LAST thing you need.   Blow off the needed steam and then regroup.  Please let us know how your doing.

Laura

beila
Posts: 97
Joined: Sep 2012

Kathy

So sorry you had to go through this stressful hassle!!

However, was glad to hear that you were referred to cardiologist.

Obviously some receptionist or "assisstant" screwed up re contacting you, and that is absolutely ridiculous!

I would advise you to "lay low" until AFTER your surgery; Then you should get to the bottom of this and have whoever it was accountable.....speak to your surgeon about it AFTER  he or she does the surgery.

Go with your husband for more power (sexism thrives in the surgical cummunity!!)

I hope you can soon get over this added stress and rest and relax

 

All the best,

Beila

ps  let us know what the cardiologist said

pps   it is definitely better that your surgery happen when you DO NOT have a cold

Kaleena's picture
Kaleena
Posts: 1010
Joined: Nov 2009

Dear Kathy:

 

I know what you mean.  It is just that you were so prepared to get this surgery over and done with that when you arrived and they said sorry that it was mentally mindblowing.

 

A similar thing happened to me.   Since my surgery place was a 3 hour drive, we had to go the night before.   Also, I had to be on a liquid diet for the day and then do the prep work at night.  We had settled into the hotel and I had just finished my prep work when I got a call from the doctor's office indicating that there was an emergency and that they were postponing my surgery for a month.   I said do you realize that I had to arrange work issues, get a childcare person, and that we drove 3 hours?  then I started to cry.  I thought that they had just put another patient in my place but in actuallity the surgical doctor got sick and was hospitalized.   I then realized that it was probably better he didn't do surgery on me that day!   The mental stress was too much and I just wanted it over and I felt bad because my sister-in-law had to come 4 hours away to watch my children.  But after taking a few deep breaths I waited the month,

I did have the surgery the next month and it went well (except for the major snow storm back at my home!)

So, Kathy, take a few deep big breaths.   Think about the positives.   (no matter how small!)   

I hope it all gets straighten out for you.  My best to you.

 

Kathy

Sisters three's picture
Sisters three
Posts: 149
Joined: Nov 2012

Of course your upset! I would have been seriously ANGRY! Like the other ladies said let us know what the cardiologist said, I am hoping that this was just a glitch too and there is nothing wrong with your heart!

 

I did have my surgery on the 7th and this is the 1st time I have felt up to typing anything, nausea got me down pretty bad but it seems to be under control this am. 

 

Lisa

Kathy G.'s picture
Kathy G.
Posts: 116
Joined: Dec 2012

Thank you as always ladies for your thoughtful responses and support! I have continued to be so down from this simple cold it is ridiculous, but I also suspect that all the stress and anxiety has been playing a part in why I feel so sick and tired.

I saw the cardiologist on Tuesday as scheduled and I definitely have A-fib. He ordered a stress test and echo which I had yesterday. He said he would clear me for surgery, but wanted to see what the tests showed first. I go back for results the 18th.

I also went to see my PCP who took me out of work for a week so I have time to get over this cold and get my strength back up.

I decided I would write my oncologist a very straightforward letter detailing what happened and noting that due to his office having the results for almost 3 weeks and never contacting me I am concerned about moving forward with my surgery until I get an explanation of what happened. (He was in the hopsital that day and the nurse made him aware of what had happened!) I am not so naive as to think these things don't happen, butI hope this is not their standard operating procedure! The length of time they had the results and never contacted me, and more importantly the fact they never called me to apologize or explain after the hospital brought their error to thier attention this past Monday really bothers me. Like I stated in my letter I hope they have not become de-sensitized to how traumatic a cancer diagnosis can be.

I think any response I get will be key to how I will proceed. I want to move on and get things taken care of, but I do not want to be a faceless patient with just another diagnosis.

Lisa, I am glad your surgery went through and aside from the nausea are up and about. When do you get your biopsy results?

Thanks again to ALL for your responses!

Kathy

ConnieSW's picture
ConnieSW
Posts: 538
Joined: Jun 2012

Kathy,  I think you are going about this in just the right way. Mistakes happen but how they are dealt with is the true measure of one's integrity, in my opinion.  I've never had a problem saying "I regret this happened and here's what I'd like to do about it.  Is that agreeable to you or do you have a better solution?". I was a nurse supervisor for many years and did a lot of trouble shooting.  Almost everyone responds well to this approach and trust is regained.  I didn't usually say sorry because most of the time I was dealing with someone else's mess up.  I saved sorry for my own!

We all have the right to be respected and have our feelings acknowledged!

All in all, things have worked out for the best, I think, considering your cold and the A fib.  I was leery about how that was ( or wasn't) handled originally.

Stay tough, try not to let the anxiety of waiting get to you and I know you will make the right decision for you.  There are so many ahead, you'll need lots of practice!  We're with you!

Sisters three's picture
Sisters three
Posts: 149
Joined: Nov 2012

Maybe your letter will force them to at least admit they dropped the ball and give you an apology. A simple we are very sorry can go along way. Hopefully you will get some good test results on the 18th from the heart doctor, on an earlier post you had mentioned your heart pounds when you go upstairs perhaps this is why. Your heart issue diagnosis will make your surgery coming up be safer I'm sure.

I am to get my biopsy results some time next week. The surgery was really fairly easy on me, I would have to say so far so good. 

Surgery was Monday and here it is Friday and I'm only taking tylenOL once a day maybe. Just make sure you have some really baggy 

pants you can wear if go out out in public. I guess the pants and bendy straws were the only big thing for me. I got fairly neaseous when the IV came out and I went home, that is because of being extremely  medicine sensitive, the anesthesia was tough for that reason. My doctor also was kind enough to tell me in front of my husband to not get lazy and lay around too much, she said get moving as quickly and as often as possible so you won't get blood clots! Try doing that when your sick to your stomach, so the husband is saying time get up and walk every few hours,it took a lot out of me to flip those birds at him when I was sick like that.

My fingers got lots of excercise that first day!

 

beila
Posts: 97
Joined: Sep 2012

I'm glad your fingers got that exercise!

"flip those birds"  I love it!

 

If you are prone to nausea ( my least favourite feeling), COMPAZINE 10 mg works really well, if you take it at the 1st little sensation of queasy stomach....to "head it off at the pass"

 

 

Sisters three's picture
Sisters three
Posts: 149
Joined: Nov 2012

Where else can I commiserate and share information with doctors, nurses and incredibly gifted researchers? Now where other than here! Thank you Beila, I should ask the doc for a prescription so I can keep that on hand. 

 

Lisa

Kathy G.'s picture
Kathy G.
Posts: 116
Joined: Dec 2012

You guys really rock and I love everyone's sense of humor! I am starting to feel better already! Hopefully I can be more of an asset to the group and not such a whiner as things move forward.

Everyone have a great weekend!

Praying for good biopsy results, Lisa!

Kathy

Hybridspirits's picture
Hybridspirits
Posts: 143
Joined: Nov 2012

Lisa I agree on the compazine.  They had me get a perscription for this after my first chemo infusion.  I don't normally get nausea, but given all the "stuff" they gave me that day I found my first experience with it.  I used it and it worked.

I am also keeping my fingers crossed on your lab results and further treatment needed is minimum

let us know how you are doing and progressing.  I did find from the surgery that each day was so much better than the previous

hope you are able to go and walk outside and enjoy some fresh air

take care and talk to you later

Sharon

Sisters three's picture
Sisters three
Posts: 149
Joined: Nov 2012

 

You mentioned the need for nausea meds, other than that are you  handling it well? has the Doc released you for excercise yet? I remember your conversation with Jazzy1, Jan, that she got out there fairly fast trying to excercise through the chemo ASAP

and you wanted to also. Due to your bike comments several times,I am sitting on my bed searching for a good used one and a car rack to carry it. I feel like a kid at Christmas looking at all  the possibilities, within my price range that is! No matter what the results are this week on the lab results I'm going to make as many positive changes as possible in my life style and emotions. 

How about the wig hunt? did you find one and are you still going that route? 

All you ladies have a great weekend!

Double Whammy's picture
Double Whammy
Posts: 2264
Joined: Jun 2010

I so love Connie's words and will remember them.    We all know people make mistakes, and in your case it sounds like there were no medical mistakes (thank goodness), but huge mistakes in communication that could have effectived your medical care (like not knowing about the EKG and cardiology appointment).  Over the last 2 1/2 years I have encountered too many of these communication issues and it is usually on the part of the non-medical staff.  I wonder if these individuals take their roles seriously enough?  Are they treated as "less than" by the mighty medical folks?  Who is supposed to make the calls about a delay in surgery?  Seems like that should be a nurse at least, not the appointment setter, yet a roadblock can be built and a perception created by that initial point of contact.  And I could go on and on.  And it was the holidays, which is NO valid excuse in a medical situation particularly, but people do get distracted. 

I'm relieved that your delay was resolved and you're able to recover from your cold and get your surgery in due time.  I "regret" that you had to experience all the upheaval and emotional stress that went along with it, and know the wait is horrible, but you will be in better health to move forward in a month.

Suzanne

Hybridspirits's picture
Hybridspirits
Posts: 143
Joined: Nov 2012

so far the Chemo has treated me well. Other than a little naseau when I got home I have tolerated it.   Of course this is the first one.  I have been able to take a nice long 1+ ur walk every day since the infusion.  I also had that nasty Neuplasta (white blood cell shot) and did well.  A friend and a book I read said take claritan d the day before, the day of and 2 -3 days after.  My nurse also said extra strength tylenol.  Didn't have any issues to speak of other than this past Friday.  What I found is if I moved the pain went away.  Either way it was tolerable.

Going to the surgeon Monday and hopefully I am cleared for bike riding.  It is just 4 weeks since surgery so not sure.  They did clear me to take yoga.  I started that with the rec department and love it. 

As far as the wig,  I did pick one out,  color has highlights that my hair doesn't so hopefully it will brighten me up.  I am stressing as I know it will start to come out,  the roots are actually achy right now.  My neighbor owns a beauty parlor and said she would shave it this Wed,  dooms day for me.

I went  to the cancer society look and feel good class.  If you can do it go for it. It was so much fun.  They taught us how to use makeup,  gave us over 200 of makeup for free.  Not the drug store type,  but the big departement store type.  They also let us pick out a free brand new wig.  So we made ourselves up and than had fun trying on wigs. I picked out a Raquel Welch wig and walked out with it on as my husband was picking me up.  Interesting wig. A little too sophisticated for me,  but if someone wants to take me out formal I now have a wig

 

I went to a website Headcovers and ordered a few hats so I have them.  Let's see if I have guts to leave the house with just a hat?  I am sure over time I will get used to it and just not care as I have to deal with this for a while

Are they thinking you are going to have to have chemo?  Maybe you will luck out and not,  fingers crossed

I agree about the positive changes in life style and emotions.   I have found myself more calm and not as high strung.  I am hoping I can keep this when I go back to work as my job is stressful and full of politics that drive me crazy.  My goal will to learn to let things roll off my shoulders and just keep smiling

I hope you can find a bike. Maybe even Criags list.

How are you feeling?  Have you been able to go out and walk?  do you have to give yourself a shot every day to prevent blood clots. I wasn't a fan of that but my daughter came home from Seattle to help me and gave it to me every day. 

I did find that walking helped,  just had to be careful not to push it.  Also helped put me in a good mood getting outside.

let us know how you make out next week.

Sharon

 

 

jazzy1's picture
jazzy1
Posts: 1387
Joined: Mar 2010

The link below is site where I purchased 4 scarves to wear.  I just loved them as not the standard run of the mill type...more stylish and fun!

Might be of interest to any of you needing some cool fashion looks.  I as well wore them under a BB cap, which didn't make me stand out as much.  I was always so "insecure" of being bald...just me!!

Try to have fun, as it'll be more enjoyable that way...

Hugs,

Jan

 

http://www.4women.com/index.php

Hybridspirits's picture
Hybridspirits
Posts: 143
Joined: Nov 2012

thanks for the website.  I do have a few questions

are all the scarves the same style,  cap top?

on the exercise ones,  do you know what fabric they are.  I got the sense maybe spandex?  How did you find the silk versus the rayon?  recommendations? 

 

when you said you wore under a baseball cap,  just a normal baseball cap?

i am very insecure about the bald part. 

 

thanks so much for taking the time to share the website.  I think I will order one to try after I hear back on your thoughts/recommendations

sharon

jazzy1's picture
jazzy1
Posts: 1387
Joined: Mar 2010

They're pretty much the same style. Imagine a regular square scarf which you pull around the front of your forehead toward the back of neck.  Pulled together like a poneytail and simply hangs down.  The part at the back which is the poneytail can be pulled together and re-arranged in various positions to show some creativity....or simply just hangs like hair.  Each comes with a scrungy to use when pulling back to form a design/style.  

They come in different materials and colors and designs as you'll see on the site.  What I did to start, purchased 2, as one was from sale side and have to admit I fell in love.  Just not like a regular scarf most women wear, as to why I found them fun.  

As with you, I'm an avid exercise girl -- runner, walker, gym, etc.  When you're bald and wear a BB cap, I felt odd...as could see my bald head.  So...these scarves I'd wear one then put the BB cap on top....my way of thinking I had some hair...lol~  They're easy to wash, etc.

Many women would wear caps that bikers wear...meaning motorcycle bikes.  Thinking the proper name is SKULL CAPS????  Not me.

Feeling insecure about the bald part?????  I can relate, but will tell you after you're out in the "world" for a bit, you're more comfortable and feel fine with whatever you put on your head.  In fact, I had a fcancer riend who was into lots of creative ventures and had someone paint designs on her bald head....wow did she look great out in public with her bald head!!  People know we're dealing with something in  lines of cancer, so really can't hide entirely, but sure can make the venture more fun....enjoy it!  One of  my friends told me to just go bald, why cover it up....show the world you're strong and brave and this cancer isn't going to stop me~  Just couldn't go there, but that's just me.

Hope this has helped and plse let me know if you have more questions...feel free to send me a personal message on the site...possibly easier for you.

 

Good Luck~

Jan

 

nempark
Posts: 579
Joined: Apr 2010

Kathy, please do not let them get away with this, this is absolutely ridiculous and they are too ashamed to even humble themselves and apologize to you. Write to the Director of the hospital, they do not take these errors lightly.  Lastly, make sure that you get all your medical records just in case you have to go somewhere else.  OH I am so mad.

beila
Posts: 97
Joined: Sep 2012

I agree...letter to Director of Hospital

but if you are having surgery there, do not rock the boat until AFTER the surgery is over

I am an MD with 30 years hospital experience, and I know of which I speak!!

Has your surgeon at least spoken to you and explained/apologized?

 

Sheila

Sisters three's picture
Sisters three
Posts: 149
Joined: Nov 2012

Today is the day you go back, keep us up to date. Have a calm and peaceful afternoon! TGIF!

ConnieSW's picture
ConnieSW
Posts: 538
Joined: Jun 2012

I was just thinking about you and wondering if you knew anymore .  Waiting to hear......

Kathy G.'s picture
Kathy G.
Posts: 116
Joined: Dec 2012

I was down for over a week with that cold that started last weekend and just went back to work yesterday. I was glad for how things played out b/c I needed the rest.

During the time I was off I went in for the stress test and echo for my heart and got the results today. I definitely have the A-fib diagnosis.The dr. has put me on meds to treat that and cleared me for surgery.

The oncologist's office called and although the nurse never acknowledged getting my letter did say she wanted to apologize for what had happened. She said they did not get my EKG results until the Friday before my surgery and tried to call both myself and my husband to let me know the surgery would be delayed, but both our numbers were transposed! She said they changed some of their office procedures so this does not happen in the future.

Although I still find these explanations questionable (did they not look for my pre-op test results knowing I was scheduled for surgery that Monday? How did both my husband's and my phone numbers get transposed? Why didn't they get the number from the hospital since the pre-op screening nurse called them about EKG results?)I appreciated that I did get an apology and a response. I am rescheduled for 1/28 at 8am and now have learned I really need to stay on top of things rather than assume the professionals getting paid big money from my health insurance will be taking care of that for me...lol!

Although I have been down the better part of the past week I have been reading some posts although sometimes I have difficulty navigating the board. I have been looking for Lisa's status regarding her surgery results and have not been able to find anything! I have also been following Mary Ann's hospitalization, Jan's good news, and gathering information from other posts that help educate and motivate me.

I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend.

Thanks for the inquiries about my heart diagnosis and surgery! I do plan to send a copy of the letter I sent to my oncologist to the hospital director AFTER my surgery....don't want to tempt fate!

Kathy

Ro10's picture
Ro10
Posts: 1356
Joined: Jan 2009

Sounds like your cold really got you down.  You are probably lucky that you did not have your surgery.  It had to be very frustrating to have it cancelled after doing a prep.  Those are not fun.  Getting your heart situation taken care of before surgery is a plus for you.

glad you got an apology from the nurse.  Hopefully the surgery on the 28th will go without problems.

i too have had problems with this new site.  I have tried repeatedly to address your earlier posts, and it would not let me reply.  The little circle just kept going round and round.  You have been in my thoughts and prayers.  In peace and caring.

Sisters three's picture
Sisters three
Posts: 149
Joined: Nov 2012

Okay you now have surgery on the 28th, good. Sounds like they have your heart issues under control and now your cold is gone,

wow your ready now for sure!

 

I haven't posted a pathology report yet because my Dr. Appt isn't till this coming Monday. I asked for a phone call letting me know about the results and instead got a two line email, it said that there was no spread and the cancer was superficial. That sounds great but no final staging and a lot of other questions to ask. We are all doing the happy dance but two lines on an email doesn't really give you the big picture. I will post the results Monday.

Lisa

 

Feeling great today, off to the mall!!!!!

Kathy G.'s picture
Kathy G.
Posts: 116
Joined: Dec 2012

Lisa,

I am just thrilled to hear your news and pray it is stage 0 with no further treatment necessary!

Please let us know when you hear from your doctor tomorrow.

WOW...off to the Mall already! That is awesome!

Kathy

ConnieSW's picture
ConnieSW
Posts: 538
Joined: Jun 2012

Hope you treated yourself to something nice at the mall.  When I finished my treatment, I splurged on a pair of watermelon colored, ultra modern looking shoes.  My husband looked at them kinda strangely but I don't care.  I call them my happy shoes and I feel good wearing them.

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