The magical mystery land of community health

I don't make this stuff up!…but I do change identifying information.

The tip-off September 28, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — lesbonurse @ 11:28 pm

For my fellow health care providers who are just starting out in the field…here’s a little guide to what people really mean when they make these statements:

  • Patient: “No, that morphine didn’t help my pain.  That oxycodone doesn’t work at all.  The only thing that works is…gosh, I can’t remember the name.  Perk…Perk…oh geez, I don’t know.  It’s something they gave me in the ER…percocet?”   Actual meaning: drug-seeking
  • Patient: “I was carrying my bottle of MS Contin in my purse and then someone robbed me!  They stole my purse and my entire month of pills!”  Actual meaning: drug seeking
  • Patient: “I use my inhalers every day.”  Me: “Well, both of them are expired and they’re full of crumbs.  How did that happen?” Patient: “Well, I don’t know.  I use them every day.”  Actual meaning: I haven’t used those inhalers since 2007!
  • Patient: “I’m using my insulin every day”  Me: “Hmm, your blood sugar is 400 today…which is the same as it was before we put you on insulin.”  Patient: “It’s not working!”  Actual meaning: I hate the idea of insulin and I’ve never actually used it at home
  • Patient, in response to domestic violence screening: “Oh, my husband is a little jealous.  You know, possessive.”  Actual meaning: my husband is abusive and I’ve been completely isolated from my friends and support network
  • Patient, in response to the question ‘How come you decided to stop your medication?’: “God will decide if I live or die.  Solomente Dios sabe.”  Actual meaning: I’m not convinced that what you’re telling me is true.  Why should I follow your advice?
  • Patient: “I don’t like to take pills.  I’m not going to take them.”  Actual meaning: That about sums it up.

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