November 2015-Neurology 🇵🇱
When I was a patient in Neurology ward, I couldn’t wait to be admitted and transferred to the Upper Silesian Rehabilitation Centre (GCR Repty 🇵🇱). Again it was an unknown, a change I was looking forward to, especially that everyone around me was telling me only great things about it. “They’ll transform you”, “I’ve heard amazing things about the place”, “They will make you walk” and so on… In my head this was the place where great things in my journey to recovery would happen, thinking I would probably walk out of there myself, on my own two feet👣.
Before leaving ICU, the nurses advised my dad and Mr P to learn doing the basics of care around me, like suctioning etc. They knew well what was coming 🤦🏻♀️. As Neurology patient I wouldn’t receive the care I was getting until now-patient centred, getting everything you asked for nearly immediately. Neurology ward was nothing like ICU, I guess because of the severity of condition(s) you’re in as an intensive care patient 🤷🏻♀️. Anyway we were quickly very thankful for that advice, because when my dad asked the nurse in Neurology to suction me, not only did we wait forever, but when she did it she inserted the tube so deep I felt it for next few days…😵
When performing suctioning, the tube is inserted into the trachea, or just a little below it (in the windpipe). Obviously that nurse had no idea, because she forced the tube deep into my windpipe…🙄I could feel it as low as my stomach🤦🏻♀️🥴. Since then we’ve never asked anyone for help, my dad and Mr P just did that for me themselves. Even getting the whole equipment installed beside my bed was a huge struggle…the nurses couldn’t find anything in their ward, and had no idea about tracheas-it’s a whole different story, but it was a nightmare 😣😫. To my dad asking “do you know how to take care of a patient with trachea?” the reply was: “No, we never seen a patient with one”…I know! How ridiculous does that sound? 😠 No comment.
One afternoon I started struggling to breathe. I knew my trachea needed to be taken out and cleaned, as it was done every few days in ICU. It would get clogged up with mucus, etc. not a pleasant thingh to explain, so I won’t go into more detail. I communicated via letter board (still🙄🤦🏻♀️) with my dad. Straight away he understood and went to look for help, first with nurses. We couldn’t believe when they told us there’s nothing they can do because the tracheotomy was carried out in Intensive Care, so only ICU staff can touch it. Never mind the fact that they wouldn’t know what to do with it anyway…🙄 ICU nurse was called so 📞 , we waited and waited…it was getting harder and harder to breathe 😓. Hours passed by, my dad was getting very annoyed, me very frustrated. He kept telling the Neurology staff what was going on, we were helpless as well as very concerned. Finally (after dad’s several requests) the main doctor on the night shift (that’s right it was evening time and I struggled since late afternoon 😱) approached me (he asked to be alone with me) 👨🏻⚕️. Not before raising his voice at us saying “Always on my shift, your daughter has some kind of problem”-funny because A. It was the first major thing I needed help with and B. I’ve never seen him before 🤷🏻♀️🤔He seemed annoyed that my dad was constantly calling, trying to get the problem sorted. Anyway this man was very unpleasant, I won’t tell you what I thought back then, and still think of him today. He was the type that you just looked at him and you could tell he wasn’t a very nice person…🙄🤷🏻♀️ I could just nod my head for YES and move it from side to side for NO to answer him. He was with me for only about 5-10 mins… and the diagnosis? “Your daughter is psychologically unstable. There’s absolutely nothing wrong, she’s just making things up to get attention “… what a ********🤬 psychologically unstable? 😒 Making things up? 🙄 Looking for attenteion? 😲🤦🏻♀️ I couldn’t believe it! Just as I thought things couldn’t get any worse… I swear I wouldn’t believe if someone was telling me this story, but I actually experienced it myself…
In the late evening an ICU nurse came up, took my trachea out and cleaned it. Of course it was nearly completely blocked…”no wonder you found it hard to breathe, I’m sorry you had to wait so long. We were really busy and they haven’t mentioned it was an emergency on the phone”…Of course they haven’t, because why would they? 😡 From their judgement I was just this young, crazy, drama queen🤨👸🏻. That evening she gave my dad a master class on maintaining a clean, working trachea, also leaving us some essential equipment and guidelines for use ☺️😇. When she inserted it back, I took a huge breath and it felt like such a relief ☺️ I thought now, I won’t ever have to deal with that doctor again 🙏 that was the best news of that day!