Friday, January 22, 2010

Asking the right question at (almost) the right time

We patiently waited in line at the reception desk, we patiently waited to be called to provide our insurance information, and patiently provided it three times when the computer was not cooperating with the intake worker. The same worker who asked "you had your drink like you were supposed to, right?" I told her that I had no idea what she was talking about and she just kept on asking me more inane questions. From there we moved on to the CT Scan waiting room, where a tech met us, provided more paperwork and asked me if I had my drink. Again, I said no, what is this about a drink? There was no mention about cocktails before the scan.

Tech comes back with the awful attire for the scan, and I asked him about the iodine consent form. Dude still not getting it that there is something missing. It was weird walking into the CT room under my own power and free of pain (kind of). Although I was hurting badly last October, I recall how quick the scan was. It took longer to get me from the ER examination room to the CT room and onto the machine. I also remembered how kind the tech was, she treated me gingerly, like I was going to break. I assured her that I was very sturdy and could take a beating. All I wanted to do was jump from the gurney to the darn machine and get it over with. The tech urged me to slow down, afraid I might hurt myself (kind of late for that given what was going on inside me). Once in place the scan was over in less than fifteen minutes.

I did not recall iodine being pumped into my veins. The tech today explained the iodine procedure and how it would be injected through an IV. He asked me if I had ever had a shot of whiskey, because that is how it feels when the iodine courses through your system. Since I am allergic to needles (as well as hard work and pain), I asked tech dude why was it different this time. He explained that they did a very quick scan at the ER due to it being an emergency. Just as he is about to insert the needle into my arm, he mentioned that the iodine, combined with all the "solution" I drank would provide a detailed contrast and detail to the surgeon. I again mentioned that there must be a misunderstanding because I was only told nothing per mouth for four hours before the scan. What is all this talk about getting my drink on?

Tech dude finally listens to me, and it turns out I was supposed to have consumed a barium solution three times before the scan. So we get to reschedule for Monday, where lucky me, I get to wait in line all over again. At least I avoided a useless turn as a pin cushion.

Earlier, while we waiting for an available intake worker, they called a woman with SS's first name over the intercom. It is not a name one hears often, and P immediately came to me with SS (they were checking out the fish tank), curious about the identity of her namesake. It was an elderly woman and a long way from five feet tall. Her age did not surprise me, because SS is named after a woman who would be 111 years old today.

I wonder, if a shot of whiskey is supposed to make one feel the way the tech described, why do people have more than one? Sounds like plenty with just one.

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