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The blood draw From Hell!!

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The blood draw From Hell!!

Post by Little Audrey on Fri Nov 14, 2014 8:22 pm

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Oh, my gosh, I have not had a blood draw like this for probably 30 years. I can't believe this all went so badly! The first thing I do when I arrive at the lab is look to see who is working. They all know me well there, and they all know I'm a very tough case. As a matter of fact, they have 2 nicknames for me there. They call me Dr. S.......(my last name), which I find very funny since you all call me Dr. Aud here), and they call me The Triple Threat. They call me the latter because my veins are very deep, very small, and very crooked. There are only 3 women who work there who can get my blood on the first try. If I don't see any of them there, I know it's not going to be a good day.

Today I arrived at the lab, took a look around, and saw 3 strange women who I have never seen before! Shocked It was not good. I put my orders in the bin, signed the paper to have all results mailed to my home, and took a seat in the waiting area. There was no one else there waiting when I arrived, so the 3 woman got to work on the computer with my lab orders. One woman sitting at the computer started to shuffle through them all. I had 3 pages of orders from 3 different doctors today. This is normally not an issue. I have had to do this in the past. The woman on the computer immediately had questions. She started asking the other women about my free T3. She said she wasn't able to find that in the computer. She asked the other women about this, and neither one of them could help her. While she was struggling with that, one of the other women asked me who the 3 doctors were who ordered the labwork. Now, the doctors names were right there on the pages I handed them. I told them who the 3 doctors were. When I named my nutty nephro, they all looked totally lost and started searching the papers for his name. Then one of them said, "Oh, there it is!" ????? I'm thinking to myself, oh my goodness, this is NOT good!

Meanwhile, an elderly gentleman came in needing his blood drawn too. He sat down for about 2 minutes, and they called him in to get his blood drawn. The woman looked at me and said, his order was easy and it went right through, so we can take him in now. It's a good thing I was in a good mood today. I laughed and asked if I was causing a problem. I could clearly see this was the case, but it was certainly not my fault.

This other gentleman went in the other room to get his blood drawn. I sat in the waiting area for 5, 10, 15 more minutes! The 2 women who were left at the computer continued to question everything and look lost. Finally, a young girl came in to help. I have seen her there before, but I couldn't remember if she was good at drawing the blood or not. I only saw her one other time, and it was quite a while ago. The woman at the computer asked this young girl about the free T3. The young girl told her to take the order back into the actual lab and ask them what to do with it. What the heck?!!! It's not like this was some weird test for goodness sake! So the woman took the labslip back to the lab. She came back out, sat down at the computer, and continued working on my orders.

Ten more minutes had gone by. That poor gentleman who had gone in to get his blood drawn never came back out!! I was thinking maybe he was having some sort of difficult test that just took a while.

A few more minutes passed, and one of the women told me to come on back to get my blood drawn. When I got back there, that poor elderly gentleman was sitting in the other chair, and the first woman was STILL working on him, just trying to get his blood!!! He looked at me and rolled his eye with a scared look on his face. I thought it might be a good idea to mention to this woman who was going to draw my blood, that I am a tough case, and she might want to call for help if she is not used to dealing with toughies. I hate to scare them right off the bat, but I also don't enjoy sitting there feeling like a darned pin cushion! The girl said we would be ok. Yeah, right.

I showed her exactly where they ALWAYS go in to find my best vein. She felt it for quite a while and said, "No, there's nothing there." ???? I told her if she couldn't find anything THERE, we were in BIG trouble!

She asked me if she could look at my other arm. I told her she certainly could, but there is nothing there. She looked all over both arms and said she was stumped. I was thinking I should just go home and come back another day, but I really wanted to get this done today!

Meanwhile, that elderly gentleman was still sitting beside me giving me scared, disgusted looks, because the other woman STILL could not get his blood!!!

She spotted a vein on the outside of my forearm in the fleshy part of the arm. She said she was going to try that one. I told her I never had that one stabbed before, but if she felt she could do it, go for it. She stuck the needle in, and sure enough after wiggling it around for a while, she found the vein, and the blood started to fill the tube. After the tube was about half full, she made a strange face and shook her head. I could see that the blood had stopped flowing. She said it was not good, and it wasn't working. Crying or Very sad
She had no idea what to do. It was obvious she was VERY new at this, and it was very obvious the other woman working on that gentleman was also very new at it all. I actually felt badly for the girl working on me. I kept joking around trying to calm her.

Then I noticed a nice, juicy vein sticking out on the back of my hand. I pointed it out to her. She asked me if I wanted her to use that one. All I wanted was to get this darned blood drawn and get my results!! So I told her if she was game, I was. So she prepared to attempt this. As she was prepping me, that other young girl who I had seen there before, came into the room to see what was going on and what the holdup was. She took over on the elderly gentlemen, as the other woman was STILL working on him!!

The woman working on me inserted the needle into the back of my hand. The vein moved a bit, but she was able to grab it. The blood started to flow into the tube. I was thinking, hallelujah!!! Shortly after the blood started filling the tube, the young girl working on that gentleman, looked over and said, "Finish that very quickly and get out of there! That vein is blowing! I can see it from here!" affraid Immediately, the blood started to pool under my skin, causing a HUGE purple lump on the back of my hand! This was a bit frightening! I don't think this has ever happened before! It was not just bruised, it was VERY swollen! It looked like someone had cut a table tennis ball in half and put half under my skin.

They finally finished up on that poor elderly man sitting beside me. When he got up to leave, he looked at me and wished me good luck. Then a young girl came in and took his seat to get her blood drawn. She became very pale when she looked down and saw what was going on with me. She told me she was scared to death to get her blood drawn. I told her it would be ok. I told her I was a very tough case. What a shame that she had to see all of this.

The young girl who worked there and told the woman to stop drawing from my hand, then came over to work on me. Oh, and the 2 tubes the first woman had drawn from my forearm and my hand weren't any good. She didn't fill them enough for them to use, They had to pitch them and start from scratch!

So now the young girl is about to attempt to stick me for the third time to try to find another vein. As she was feeling around, I pointed out to her the spot where they ALWAYS draw my blood when I come in. She felt the spot and said, "Well, there we go. That's a great one!" She looked at the first woman who worked on me and said, "So why didn't you just use this one in the first place?" The woman told her because she couldn't feel anything there. Oh, my goodness!! So the young girl prepped my arm, I made the sign of the cross, more for a laugh than anything, and she went right in, filling 5 more tubes of blood. Then she tried to patch up all of my wounds, while putting a LOT of pressure on the back of my hand because it was getting bigger and bigger.

That poor young girl who was sitting beside me getting her blood drawn, was still sitting there, looking off to the side with her eyes closed, while the other woman continued working on her. That poor girl! I sure hope she got out of there with less trouble than I had!

So that was my fun day at the hospital today! I think the next time I go over there, if I don't recognize anybody, I am going to tell them I'll come back another day! I trusted that woman. She said she could handle me. I'm not listening to her next time! When I left, I patted her on the arm to let her know it was ok, but I really don't want her working on me again! I know they all have to learn by practicing, but it won't be on me!!

And to top off the day, my throat is sore and swollen, and it looks like I must be catching a cold. My gynecologist was sick and coughing at my appointment on Wednesday. I guess I can thank her for this. Just what I need; more misery in my life. It's just not a good day in my world.

Audrey






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Re: The blood draw From Hell!!

Post by Lucycatnaps on Thu Nov 20, 2014 9:45 am

Hi Audrey,
So glad that finally some of your symptoms are settling and that all your hard work and research are paying dividends.  It is such a hard slog it seems to stay on the road to recovery and I hope that you continue to feel a bit better and that the oedema finally gets sorted and settles.

Brigitte, I hope you are not kept waiting too long for your MRI results and that you get a neuro appointment soon and some answers.  I found it hard enough not driving for six weeks after my hip op so can imagine how frustrating it must feel.  I suspect that having calciums out of whack for a long time really affects our whole bodies and in more ways than is currently recognised.  My younger brother had a minor stroke a few years ago and that has left him epileptic but thankfully they happen rarely now and always during the night.
Hugs to you both,
Sue x
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Re: The blood draw From Hell!!

Post by Tigerlily on Thu Nov 20, 2014 11:34 am

Great news, Audrey!

Could it be that having Magnesium and Potassium our of sync for so long has been one reason for your edema symptoms? I truly hope it could be something as simple and fixable as this!

Keep us posted on further developments!     Hope it will soon be "adios edema" for you!

Love from Tigerlily xxxx

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Re: The blood draw From Hell!!

Post by Little Audrey on Fri Nov 21, 2014 1:13 am

Thank you, Brigitte.  Yes, I am excited that possibly we are getting closer to the cause of all of this crap.    I still haven't talked to the nephro's people, and I am not too happy that they haven't called me yet!    When I called last week I told them my muscle cramps were unbearable and stabbing them with knives actually sounds like relief to me.    The receptionist even repeated that as he wrote it down to discuss with the doctor.    It's been a week and a half since I talked to them.   I wonder how long they would like to deal with nonstop excruciating pain?!!    I am going to call them tomorrow.  

I am so very sorry you are having so much trouble with the seizures again.   That is so sad.   Why is it we get one thing fixed and something else goes all whacko?!   And why are we all so lucky to get the chance to experience this phenomenon?!  Laughing

That is such a shame that your activities will now be so restricted due to the seizures.  That is awful.     Have you not suffered enough?!   I do hope a medication adjustment is all that will be needed to correct this problem.   Hang in there!!

Thanks for the words of encouragement, Sue, and thank you a bunch for the hugs!!   They are always so much appreciated!

Yes, Tigerlily, I am sure hoping it will be that simple to fix all of this mess.   I was on such a high yesterday after seeing the water going down in my feet and ankles!   And it was so nice to see the scale move in the right direction, even if it were only a very slight move.    And to have the muscles in my neck a bit looser was also nice!    

Then I woke up this morning and everything seemed somewhat bleak again, darn it!     I awoke with a terrible headache!   It felt like my head wanted to blow off.   I assumed it was probably from this stupid cold.  It is starting to dry up, and that is usually when my sinuses and glands get all painful.    But this was the worst headache I think I have ever had.    Every time I coughed (and I'm coughing quite a bit now from the cold), my head felt like it wanted to explode!   And my jaw was all stiff and painful on the left side. The water looked like it was a bit worse in my feet and ankles.   I hopped on the scale to see that it was up; just 1/4 of a pound, but it was up.    Not a good start to my morning.

My hubby and I had decided to go Christmas shopping today.   I was all excited thinking about how this year I would NOT need crutches for this little excursion, like I did last year, and I was very grateful for that!   But after we were out for about 10 minutes, I realized that I am still not able to simply stand still without my feet hurting badly!    I guess I was sort of hoping that the potassium supplements were going to help with this to an extent where I would not be in pain when standing.   I was wrong.   We had to hurry along so I could get home and get off of my stupid feet!

I did take 2 Aleve gelcaps before we left this morning.  I was hoping that would help with any pain I might have to deal with.    It didn't seem to help at all.   My head kept throbbing, and my feet kept hurting.   My shoulders and back cramped up terribly trying to carry around my purse, so I had to put that in the shopping cart and keep a close eye on it, which was a pain too, because it's so easy to turn away for a few seconds when you're looking at something, and that's all the time that's needed for someone to snatch it.   I NEVER put my purse in the cart, but I had no choice today.  I really didn't think hubby wanted to carry it around for me! Smile  

We did our shopping, ate lunch at the mall, and were back home by noon!    That was mainly because I was hurting so badly, I didn't feel like doing any more shopping.

When I got home, I sat down at the computer to order a few things for my sister's grandchildren a couple of things for Christmas that we were unable to find in the stores.   All of a sudden, I was hit with a wall of intense fatigue, and I became VERY chilled!   This had me a bit concerned because I have not felt fatigue like this since before my parathyroid surgery!   When the symptoms all started 4 years ago, the fatigue was so bad, all I could do was sleep all day and all night long.   It was awful!   I am not a napper, but I was sleeping all day long at that time.    I had to put my laptop down and go to sleep just as I got started ordering things!     I was wearing a nice, heavy sweatshirt, with nice, heavy sweatpants, and I still had my socks on.   I hit the couch with my nice, warm afghan, and I was still freezing!    I was out like a light the second I laid down and closed my eyes.   I slept very soundly for an hour and a half, until one of my cats came in meowing because he was hungry.    This was VERY strange for me!

One reason the fatigue has me worried is because 5 days ago my shins started aching again.   This was one of my most annoying symptoms of hyperparathyroidism!     I sure hope they are aching from the cold weather or something, but still I am concerned.   Although, if that would be the case, and I did have another tumor, and it would get rid of any of this crap I'm dealing with now, BRING IT ON!

I am anxious for this cold to pass so I can see how much of all of this is being caused from the cold.

I think my body is just so weakened, it's having trouble dealing with the UTI on top of the cold.   At least, I hope that's what the problem is.  Shocked

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Re: The blood draw From Hell!!

Post by Amanda Lynne on Fri Nov 21, 2014 6:43 am

I've only just caught up on this thread and looking at how much people are suffering from different problems. I just wish doctors had the time or inclination to actually listen to their patients, link up with other consultants the patient is seeing and complete the jigsaw. 
It really can't be that difficult, each time we see a different consultant it is treated as a completely new problem instead of treating this as a whole problem and seeing if there is a connection, why can't they work together.
I do hope you all get these problems sorted as soon as possible.
Love Amanda xxxx
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Re: The blood draw From Hell!!

Post by Brigitte0 on Fri Nov 21, 2014 8:46 am

Working together, Amanda? How I wish consultants would do that. Having a disease that affects multiple organs/systems means that although it is written all over my hospital/doctors notes and at the front of every computer screen, different departments never liaise. In fact, until I saw the Clinical Genetics department, I had no idea any doctor could look at the disease as a whole and it took 2 decades to get to that point!! 

Audrey, I'm so sorry that you've been feeling so rough again and hope it's just a blip and you get everything back on track very soon. 

Love and lots of hugs 

Brigitte xxxx
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Re: The blood draw From Hell!!

Post by Hadleigh on Fri Nov 21, 2014 8:59 am

Audrey I don't like to keep banging on about thyroid but hitting a wall of fatigue, feeling very cold and aching shins are 100% thyroid symptoms. as you have changed your thyroid meds recently I would say your levels are still adjusting and you may not be on your ideal dose yet.
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