Now I’m not one to moan…

well B may disagree and certainly would tell me that I don’t moan at the right time – from what he can remember anyway… but moving swiftly on.

I’ve never had any complaints about treatment on the haematology ward and indeed have only praise and this has nothing at all to do with a conversation yesterday with one of the nurses involving the disclosure of my blog! But let’s take a little look at the tablets I received in dialysis on Saturday night.

After being asked about my drugs chart on Saturday night and saying I’d have my tablets when I got back to the ward I enquired about it. Only because the medications on haematology are now computerised, with portable computer equipment the size of something from Robocop, so there are no longer card charts. One of the nurses printed me a list of tablets so that I had it to hand should the need arise.

Off I went on Saturday with my list to hand should the need arise. It did. Even though I said I would have my tablets when I got back the nurse was quite insistent that she give me what they had on the ward despite me saying that I would be having my chemo attached when I got back anyway just in case she thought I don’t know, she thought they may get overlooked.

When she got back she said that they didn’t have everything (what a surprise there) and said that she’d marked them with a 5, presumably from the written drug chart coding, and went through the items. The first one she got to was a tablet (co-trimoxazole) that’s only given on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays and which is clearly, well in my opinion, marked with a shaded box (rather than a blank one) on any day not a Monday, Wednesday or Friday in the 14 day date range shown. I said ‘I only take that on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays anyway.’ She didn’t comment and moved on. Fair do’s she mentioned the mouth ways which says bed time as she wouldn’t know that this is entrusted to the patient’s initiative. And it’s not like I fully expected them to have Thalidomide to hand but let’s take a little shufty at the three different tablets I did get.

Sodium Bicarbonate – 1000mg of 500mg tablets – so in my book that’s two – I got one

Calcichew – 2000mg of 500mg tablets – I get that to four – I got two

Omeprazole – 20mg – yay we have a winner!

I drank some of the water out of the glass and as it was getting late, I was getting tired and I didn’t have a pencil/pen to note down the differences I put the tablets in my bag pocket.

I had to fend off an attempt to get the haematology ward to bring the missing tablets down, and not just because I was being considerate to the night staff (two nurses and a health care assistant to up to 19 patients) who really didn’t need to be traipsing across the hospital including down lifts and up lifts, with meds when it could easily wait but also because it would have resulted in potentially greater confusion. She wasn’t letting up but I just kept saying I’d have them later. She informed me I would have missed the drug round at 10 o’clock. I didn’t say that just because it says 10 (well actually 22:00) on the sheet didn’t mean it had to be given at that exact time to every patient. I said again that the chemo would be going up when I got back and I’d have a chance to ask about painkillers and anti-nausea just in case she thought I might need a prompt to ask for pills. She left still a little put out about the situation and I thought ‘If she comes back I’ll give her some flannel about Thalidomide being a controlled substance, blah, blah.’ I mean thinking about it the nurses do use gloves to pop them out to avoid direct contact due to the whole birth defects issue so I need to bear that in mind for future reference – although hopefully I won’t have another night that late.

When I got back to the ward the nurse asked if I’d got a note of what I’d been given as the dialysis nurses had obviously rang down to say that I’d had some but not all my tablets. I explained in a few short words that I not taken anything she’d given me as that seemed the easiest course of action as she’d messed (or a word to that effect – it was LATE) them up – so we started again.

Other than that everything’s fine. I’ve only been sick once – yesterday just as I opened the bag containing the Chinese takeaway that B had collected. I hadn’t even seen the food. Fortunately I’d picked a couple of sick bowls up earlier when I started feeling not nauseous but a bit odd.

And I mean it’s not like the electrical sockets were off for long after one of the nurses attempted to accommodate me unplugging one of my two drips, and putting up with it beeping to be reconnected as it had less than 26 minutes of battery time remaining, as I wanted to have power to my netbook by finding an extension cable that didn’t agree with the socket! The engineer had it sorted in minutes!