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Old 01-04-2013, 02:04 PM   #1
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Default My visit to the local ER...

I have been having some abdominal pain for some time. Tuesday night things got worse and by Wednesday morning I was off to the ER.

I walked though the door and it was all I could not to turn around and leave. It was packed. People coughing so bad, Im surprised they weren't coughing their lungs right out of their bodies. About three quarters were in masks, but some had them on so loose, they shouldn't have even bothered. I took a number and squeezed my way through the mass of people standing, to get a bit closer to the seating area and I tried to distance myself as much as I could..

I was lucky enough to be standing in the right place and scored myself a seat when someone was called for triage. I sat there in awe. Everyone had a number in there hand, but it still took 45 minutes for triage. A few volunteers were passing out water and warm blankets and were trying to help people get as comfortable as they could. As I sat there , I noticed a woman across from me in a bit of a cubby so to speak. She was sitting in a chair, but was facing into the corner while vomiting in a grocery bag. When she did sit straight around between bouts of vomiting and just plain heaving, I was rather alarmed by her colour. She was a very strange shade of green. I don't think I've ever seen anyone look that sick. She was a grown woman and she was still in her pajama's...to sick to change I presume.
I counted eight other people that were vomiting....Several kids were laying lethargically in their mothers arms. At one point in the ER game of musical chairs, I had a person on both sides of me vomiting at the same time....I had to walk away or I would have joined them.

They eventually had a nurse go around the ER and talk to people "by number", take their health cards and jotting down a brief discription of symptoms. At least we were getting registered. A while later I was finally called over for official registration. They took my temp BP etc and then told me to go back and sit until called. 45 minutes after walking into the ER....I was called to the Triage area. After a brief conversation, I was told to go to the "Yellow Zone" . That is one up from "Fast Track". It's not too bad an area, comfy chairs and big screen TV's line the walls. And that is where I waited in between tests and where I sat observing for the next 5 1/2 hours. Yup, 7 hours in the ER. It was a complete cesspool, if I get away unscathed it will be a miracle. Did I mention that I haven't had time to get my flu shot yet?

Here's a few of the more interesting patients....About 80% were probably Flu related. They were wrapped in blankets, burning with fever, some coughing, a LOT were vomiting. I'd say about another 10% were limb injuries, a lot hobbling with sprained ankles, a few I'd guess were broken because they could put no pressure on the foot at all. One guy tango'd with a staple gun at work and put a nice staple into his leg just below his knee...(that was really creepy). There were 4 cops down in the yellow zone with two different patients, one male, one female....both in shackles and in wheelchairs.

Over all, I left there shaking my head at the all the Flu patients...couldn't believe it. I'd never seen the ER like that before. I mentioned to one nurse, that "some" of the patients looked like they could have been seen at the clinic and probably shouldn't have been in the ER...she told me that the Clinics were overloaded with people and that THEY were sending all the over flo patients to the ER. She said it has been like that for a week.


I left with my prescription for antibiotics and I hope that's all I left with!

Thats what's happening in my town...
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Old 01-04-2013, 04:11 PM   #2
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When winter hits, I don't know why the hospitals don't split those waiting in ER into three areas. Vomiting, coughing, and other. It's ridiculous.
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Old 01-04-2013, 04:26 PM   #3
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SIL says they've been crazy busy in his ER in NJ, and just about everyone who is coming in with the flu has had the flu shot.
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Old 01-04-2013, 04:32 PM   #4
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First, I agree 100% with rb. During January/February in this part of the country - if you weren't sick with a respiratory or gastric bug GOING to the doc or emerg or hospital clinic - you're sick coming out.

Second - whatever is ailing you, I hope it resolves quickly.

My local news channel has a segment on flu the other night - I didn't mention it because their site went down & I had no link. Do now:


***KINGSTON GENERAL HOSPITAL IS DEALING WITH A SERIOUS FLU OUTBREAK THAT HAS LEFT MORE THAN 50 PATIENTS IN ISOLATION.***

http://www.ckwstv.com/news/kingston/...spx?ID=1853277


Then increasingly, our news here speaks of it REALLY ramping up all over Canada:

***Flu outbreak crowding Canadian emergency rooms***


http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/story/...influenza.html


Next... I wasn't thinking of illness when I left for work this morning. Then I got on the bus. Excuse me, did I misread the signage; did they add a 'Plague Route' to the transfer point I was at? The driver was hacking as were a good quarter of the passengers. Several looked as though they should have called in sick. It was the same on both bus rides this morning. After work I had to go up to the Disability Office to bring in paperwork. The receptionist was coughing. The security guard was green. Half the waiting clients were dying or giving a good impression. I slunk into the drug store/post office to mail a letter. Pharmacy counter was swamped with miserable people looking for suggestions for symptom relief. The grocery store - same deal. Bus ride home - more of same. And I'm another who - aheam - after nagging everyone I knew to get a flu shot, missed a zillion handy clinics & still haven't gotten one. Same strains as last year - maybe I'm one of those lucky people where the effects of last year's shot will linger. Maybe I'm full of it, (likely), again.

And now in Vancouver comes news of a NEW strain of norovirus that's been hitting a few hospital hard:

***Norovirus outbreaks contained at 2 Vancouver-area hospitals***



http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/britis...s-newwest.html


Ain't winter grand?

---------- Post added at 03:32 PM ---------- Previous post was at 03:29 PM ----------

fb - your comment about the flu shot. CDC AND Canada's health types are all saying this year's shot is a good match. So how come people who got the shot are coming down with flu? Yes, some come down with it because they're exposed before immunities kick in fully, others - the shot just doesn't 'take' that year but I'm hearing far more folks than usual mention they HAD the shot in plenty of time. Our FluWatch site has yet to point to a differing strain. I'll be curious to read their weekly report later tonight.
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Old 01-04-2013, 04:37 PM   #5
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Quote:
CDC AND Canada's health types are all saying this year's shot is a good match. So how come people who got the shot are coming down with flu?
Good question. Winter break for public schools ends this Monday. If the shot isn't working I suspect we'll see an epidemic of flu absences within a week or two.
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Old 01-04-2013, 04:41 PM   #6
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Winter break just ended here so I'm expecting a big ramp up among kids... any time now.
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Old 01-04-2013, 05:24 PM   #7
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I've been trying to make a flu shot appt. for three of us all week. We're in Tuesday, hope it's soon enough. Both kids work in retail.

Our hospital has already had a norovirus doing the rounds with patients. I think D#2 and I had it right after Christmas. We don't get severe symptoms, like vomiting, just nausea and minor d.
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Old 01-04-2013, 07:33 PM   #8
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My DD has been home from University for close to three weeks. She had a friend over last weekend and the girl coughed the entire time....yesterday DD started up with it.

She heads back Sunday, I will be sure to top up her medication, lozenge, soup and ginger ale supplies. When she gets sick...she usually ends up really sick.

Sue..50 in isolation...that's crazy!

I'm wondering if all the vomiting I witnessed Wednesdy had anything to do with Norovirus.
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Old 01-04-2013, 07:57 PM   #9
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I was stunned with that number too - in KINGSTON??? I haven't been able to find any analysis of those numbers - not yet, anyway. I'm willing to bet MOST of them were already in hospital - elderly bedblockers or elderly admitted for other reasons who contacted flu. If a significant % are not elderly or those with complex conditions then... we have a problem.
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Old 01-04-2013, 10:32 PM   #10
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I have to go out for a while ...I'm going to search numbers in the GTA and see what I come up with when I get back...

50? that's crazy, but after what I saw in Newmarket on Wednesday, Im not really surprised.
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Old 01-04-2013, 10:47 PM   #11
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More at link..

The number of people who have been sick with the flu this season is much higher than normal, a Toronto Public Health (TPH) report shows.

Between Sept. 1 and Dec. 29, 2012, the agency recorded 449 confirmed cases of the flu, more than double the average of 188 cases over the last decade.

Also, 199 of this season’s cases happened in just seven days — the week of Dec. 23-29.

TPH says 62 people were admitted to hospital for the flu and no one has died.

“Emergency departments across the city, including those at Toronto General Hospital and Toronto Western Hospital, are seeing an increase in people coming to the department with flu-like symptoms,” University Health Network spokeswoman Gillian Howard told CityNews.ca.
http://www.citynews.ca/2013/01/04/fl...ke-in-toronto/

---------- Post added at 09:45 PM ---------- Previous post was at 09:41 PM ----------

TORONTO, Ont. – If you’ve noticed more people around you coughing and sneezing — that’s because the flu seems to be more aggressive right now than in 2012, according to health officials in Canada and the U.S.

Toronto Public Health said as of Jan. 2, it had 199 new lab-confirmed cases reported. At this time in 2012, there only eight new cases reported in the city.

According to Health Canada, the number of cases of the flu were way up by mid-December compared to 2012, and the flu season hasn’t even peaked yet.

http://www.680news.com/2013/01/04/fl...ar-data-shows/

---------- Post added at 09:47 PM ---------- Previous post was at 09:45 PM ----------

Richmond Hill hospital reports more flu cases

'Busy week' says operations director..

http://www.yorkregion.com/news/artic...more-flu-cases
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Old 01-04-2013, 10:51 PM   #12
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FluWatch reports a sharp rise in numbers but have still to report any significant changes in strain or vaccine match:

http://www.phac-aspc.gc.ca/fluwatch/.../index-eng.php
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Old 01-04-2013, 10:54 PM   #13
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If it was a good match, there would not be such a huge rise in numbers. Whether someone miscalculated, or it mutated... the flu shot does not seem to be preventing full blown symptoms.
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Old 01-05-2013, 12:13 AM   #14
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I do not understand why if people have the flu they don't stay at home in bed and throw up there. I don't understand why they go to the hospital. To me it makes no sense. Unless there is something I have missed these decades since flu was something folks got in the winter. Do they have something at the hospital that helps cure the flu faster?
I hope that doesn't sound wrong.
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Old 01-05-2013, 12:44 AM   #15
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Sarrah, I think our society has come to believe there is an almost instantaneous medical fix for everything. Mom never took us to the doctor for cold, sniffles, flu, chicken pox, measles, tummy pain, "sun stroke", etc. Not unless illness carried on for weeks. Doctors, in my childhood, were for emergencies and checkups. An emergency was shoving a curtain rod down your throat, taking out a tonsil. Today's emergencies are I think my kid might have an ear infection. Fix it.
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Old 01-05-2013, 01:04 AM   #16
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Today's emergencies are I think my kid might have an ear infection. Fix it.
Yep. The moms in my PTO/Preschool circle (before we started homeschooling) were horrified that I didn't take the kids to the doctor when they had chicken pox. Or a cold. Or a virus. They were all going to the doctor at the drop of a hat -- I thought it was ridiculous.
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Old 01-05-2013, 01:37 AM   #17
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A friend was telling me yesterday that her mother went the ER for heart problems, and found conditions similar to those already mentioned. People were coming there because hospitals closer to them were full to bursting. Mostly flu-like symptoms.

BTW, Her mother was admitted, but it took almost 10 hours to get her a room. And while they were waiting, the hospital starting turning away newcomers because there was no more room. This was near Richmond, VA.

While I was at the drugstore last night, I ran into a young man that grew up with my son. The flu is racing through their extended family, courtesy of holiday visitors from Illinois. As I said goodbye, I reminded him to get as much rest as he could with a sick baby, and to push fluids. I later remembered that he is not 8 anymore, and that he is in his final year of medical school. Possibly my advice was not necessary.
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Old 01-05-2013, 01:46 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flourbug View Post
SIL says they've been crazy busy in his ER in NJ, and just about everyone who is coming in with the flu has had the flu shot.
We have been seeing positive flu with people who were vaccinated. They have a strain which isn't covered by the shot.

I won't complain about Egyptian ERs again. Maybe the public ones have lines like those described but the private one I ( rarely) go to do not.
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Old 01-05-2013, 02:03 AM   #19
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The good thing is, these people that have the flu in the waiting rooms are ambulatory, getting there under their own steam. Widespread, but not a ferocious flu? Anytime I've had the flu, I couldn't imagine having the energy to get to the ER, never mind sit there for hours. I either would not go, or show up in an ambulance.
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Old 01-05-2013, 02:29 AM   #20
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rb, exactly....A lot of these people clearly didn't need to be there. It ticks me off because the really sick people like rootdgr mentioned are waiting 10 hours to get a bed...then they get the bed AND the flu.

I just went and bought my daughter everything she will need if she gets the flu and put it in a large Ziplock bag for her to tuck away. I bought her a case of Ginger Ale and cans of Chicken Noodle Soup...even bought her a tub of Vicks. Its to go in a the corner of her closet and she is to leave it there...unless she needs it..... Its hard when she's 5 hours away.

Drudge has this up...
'Intense' flu wave grows across the USA
http://vitals.nbcnews.com/_news/2013...-cdc-says?lite
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Old 01-05-2013, 03:51 AM   #21
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I KNOW my DD is going to get back to school and get as sick as a dog. Shes already coughing non stop....She never gets a little sick, she goes big every time.

They are reporting 30 cases on three campus's in the last 10 days...Thats wonderful considering 90% of the kids are still at home, heading back this weekend. I wonder whats going to happen then?

Ottawa hit by influenza bug...

OTTAWA — The city of Ottawa is under the grip of the flu and emergency rooms are flooded.

There have been 30 confirmed cases at the Ottawa Hospital’s three campuses in just 10 days — and the growing number across the city has already surpassed the total for last season.

“We’ve had an unusual week,” said Dr. Virginia Roth, the hospital’s director of infection control. “I’m not sure what we’ll see for the rest of the season — if this is the start of more to come or if this is a blip and it will go away.”

Read more: http://www.ottawacitizen.com/health/...#ixzz2H5T5Fukc
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Old 01-05-2013, 04:59 PM   #22
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We're seeing quite a bit of flu (Arkansas). We give the patients masks and they invariably pull them down and continue coughing.
As for everyone looking for a quick fix for viral infections, no one ever has a cold any more... it's always a "sinus infection" requiring antibiotics, even if they have only had symptoms for a couple of days. And every cough requires ABX - even though 85% of bronchitis cases are viral (last I saw the stats, anyway).
And if you treat that baby's ear infection with "watchful waiting" as recommended... they take the baby to the ER and end up with ABX anyway, then tell you that you were wrong. Even I would do that in the ER, because the parents are already angry and demanding and you just want them to go on, so that you can take care of the patients who are actually sick.
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Old 01-05-2013, 05:08 PM   #23
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Can your DD phone and ask if she should come back before it is over? I'd think a certain % or students and more so Prof's being off sick would stop classes.
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Old 01-05-2013, 05:15 PM   #24
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Each generation seems to be coming up being bigger wimps thinking someone can fix things. People can fix cars and boats and solid things like that. People can mess up just about everything on the planet.
If the medical folks do not have common sense then I am not getting in their line. I have seen many medical types I admire greatly. I have also seen some I'd fire right on the spot. When I shop for a new Doctor I have always asked. How old are you? What was your class standing in medical school.
If the Doctor is too old they die. That is a real bugger when your Doctor dies especially when you have seen him forever. Second on is important. I know the Doctor I went to see eons ago about a planters wart removal who tried to stick a needle in the sole of my foot to freeze it was not getting his hands on my. I scootched all the way to the top of that gurney an swung my feet down and told him I'd be back later. Think he is still waiting? I didn't have the heart to tell him you stick the needle in between the toes. I mean really.
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Old 01-05-2013, 05:45 PM   #25
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Everyone at work who has been sick got the flu shot. I am the first person to come down sick who didn't get it.
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