Today I went in for an appointment to repeat my nerve block. The doctor and medical staff were all lovely. But I arrived at about 2:35 and didn’t leave until 5 pm for a short appointment. I was a bit early but got into a room right away. Did the intake paperwork and questions. Then sat to wait, and wait, and wait. I tried to read my book but felt too tired. I put my head on my hand, leaned on the desk, and fell asleep.
The very kind medical assistant came back in an apologized, and offered me hot chocolate or coffee, which I accepted. Then I saw the doctor. She thanked me for waiting and we proceeded.
I had a vasovagal reaction to the injection. This means your blood pressure drops, you feel queasy and hot, and you better not stand up because you could faint or throw up. Faiting is mainly a concern because you could hit your head or otherwise injure yourself. This has happened to me a few times before, including once when I gave blood. They lowered the table flat, gave me some cold washcloths, and made me lie still for an hour, monitoring my blood pressure and heart rate. Even after I was feeling better, my heart rate refused to rise until I got up and walked around with the nurse. By this time it was nearly 5 pm and my doctor had gone home.
The doctor asked if I’d had enough to eat today. I said, probably not. In part I had not planned to sit in the waiting room for an hour; I’d expected to be in and out. Luckily I had a granola bar, some hard candy, and a water bottle in my bag.
If this goes like last time, I expect to get a bad headache tonight, so I bought popsicles and made sure my ice packs are in the freezer.
Health care can take a lot of time and be a lot of work.