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THIS is outpatient surgery???

post #1 of 28
Thread Starter 
I can't believe this, but now they are letting people go home the same day they have surgery that requires general anesthesia???? My future m-i-l had surgery today, for a hernia. Not a super complex operation, but it required her to be totally under, and it's scalpel, not laser. I couldn't believe they would do something like that and not keep her overnight for observation--especially given that she is 76 years old! She was home a few hours after the surgery, and the hospital didn't even prescribe her any painkillers! My fiance is staying over at her house tonight, because her surgeon insisted she not be alone--yeah, no kidding! I spoke to her before and she sounded like she was still half doped-up from the anesthesia, except she was in quite a lot of pain. This is completely ridiculous!
post #2 of 28
Omg, that is unreal!

Lotsa thoughts coming your MIL's way!
post #3 of 28
About 15 years ago, my dad had an outpatient hernia repair. He was in his early 60s, at the time and came through just fine.

I've had three o/p surgeries, under general anesthesia: D & C, tubal ligation and an incision and drainage. As long as the patient is in relatively good shape and has someone to drive her/him home, they are usually OK.

Hospitals are notorious for high post-op infection rates. As long as I don't need skilled aftercare, I'd rather take my chances at home. Besides, the food is better and I can smoke.
post #4 of 28
Thread Starter 
Thanks Sam, you're sweet.

I feel terrible for her--she is in so much pain and I'm no doctor but I really think they should have kept her, or AT LEAST given her something for the pain.
post #5 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by katl8e
About 15 years ago, my dad had an outpatient hernia repair. He was in his early 60s, at the time and came through just fine.

I've had three o/p surgeries, under general anesthesia: D & C, tubal ligation and an incision and drainage. As long as the patient is in relatively good shape and has someone to drive her/him home, they are usually OK.

Hospitals are notorious for high post-op infection rates. As long as I don't need skilled aftercare, I'd rather take my chances at home. Besides, the food is better and I can smoke.

You're totally right about the infections--but to not even give her anything for the pain? That doesn't seem right to me.
post #6 of 28
Definitely call the doc for some painkillers. And have your fiance read over the discharge note-did they recommend even tylenol or motrin for her pain?
post #7 of 28
She SHOULD have post-op pain meds. I always had a botle of codeine or Vicodin, to take home. She needs to call the doc and have him call in a scrip for her.
post #8 of 28
[quote=mamacat]I can't believe this, but now they are letting people go home the same day they have surgery that requires general anesthesia???? My future m-i-l had surgery today, for a hernia. Not a super complex operation, but it required her to be totally under, and it's scalpel, not laser. I couldn't believe they would do something like that and not keep her overnight for observation--especially given that she is 76 years old! She was home a few hours after the surgery, and the hospital didn't even prescribe her any painkillers! My fiance is staying over at her house tonight, because her surgeon insisted she not be alone--yeah, no kidding! I spoke to her before and she sounded like she was still half doped-up from the anesthesia, except she was in quite a lot of pain. This is completely ridiculous![/QUOT

Yep, I'm afraid it is standard, forgive the pun, operating procedure and has been for about 10 years. Chalk it up to the power of insurance companies and their lobbyists. I recall about ten years back in NJ it was normal to give birth and go home in 24 hrs, unless there were complications or a C-section. They called them "drive thru deliveries" The law was changed after much organized protest..now it's 48 hrs (wow!) I always noticed when I worked in the hospital that men with prostate surgery stayed longer than the women giving birth, sometimes 4/5 days. Made me wonder about sexism, and how men (mostly) make the law. To this day, some insurance companies will cover the cost of Viagra, but NOT birth control pills..I smell a rat.

Even people undergoing open heart surgery are released in about 3 days if there are no complications. You have to be near dead now a days to stay in a hospital for any length of time. Bad medicine in my nurse's book. The patients lose and the Insurance Co. wins.
post #9 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by katl8e
She SHOULD have post-op pain meds. I always had a botle of codeine or Vicodin, to take home. She needs to call the doc and have him call in a scrip for her.

They told her "Take Advil," but that's not strong enough for the pain she's having. When I spoke to her at 9:15 tonight she said they'd been trying to get the doctor all afternoon to call in a prescription for her, as well as get in touch with the doctor she works for to get him to do it, but they were having no luck reaching either.
post #10 of 28
Blame the insurance companies. Patients are sent home because insurance companies dictate how much they will pay for procedures/hospitalizations. Factor in the fact that more than 1/2 of patients have medicare/medicaid - which our lovely government only pays .50 on the dollar to hospitals/doctors and you see why care is getting so shoddy. When I had abdominal surgery 20 years ago, I was in the hospital for 10 days each time. When I gave birth to my daughter (22 years ago) I was in for 7 days. These days they make you go home the next day!
post #11 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mom of Franz
Even people undergoing open heart surgery are released in about 3 days if there are no complications.

Now THAT is nuts.
post #12 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by mamacat
They told her "Take Advil," but that's not strong enough for the pain she's having. When I spoke to her at 9:15 tonight she said they'd been trying to get the doctor all afternoon to call in a prescription for her, as well as get in touch with the doctor she works to get him to do it, but they were having no luck reaching either.
I would call the hospital where the surgeon works or has admitting privileges. Ask to page/speak to the doctor on call. At this hour it may be difficult to find an open pharmacy (at least in my neck of the woods it is). Perhaps they can see her at the ED to assess her pain and give her meds? Or perhaps they can give her a regimen (take a higher dose of Advil, maybe take Tylenol with it).

I would write a letter complaining about this surgeon (for sending her home without pain meds). Send it to someone in administration - such as a section chief.
post #13 of 28
[ At this hour it may be difficult to find an open pharmacy (at least in my neck of the woods it is).

I know nothing about Queens Mamakat, but in Brooklyn there are no 24 hr pharmacies that I know of. However there is a Walgreen's in Manhattan on 14th Street and 4th Ave that is 24/7.
It's in Union Square.
post #14 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by George'smom
I would call the hospital where the surgeon works or has admitting privileges. Ask to page/speak to the doctor on call. At this hour it may be difficult to find an open pharmacy (at least in my neck of the woods it is). Perhaps they can see her at the ED to assess her pain and give her meds? Or perhaps they can give her a regimen (take a higher dose of Advil, maybe take Tylenol with it).

I would write a letter complaining about this surgeon (for sending her home without pain meds). Send it to someone in administration - such as a section chief.

My fiance just called--she is sleeping now, finally. I think she was just wiped out. Hopefully tomorrow she can get a prescription--there's really no open pharmacies in her area right now anyway.
post #15 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by mamacat
and the hospital didn't even prescribe her any painkillers! My fiance is staying over at her house tonight, because her surgeon insisted she not be alone--yeah, no kidding! I spoke to her before and she sounded like she was still half doped-up from the anesthesia, except she was in quite a lot of pain. This is completely ridiculous!
That does sound weird...not that one can go home the same day as having general (I have with two procedures that were considered same day) but the no pain med
post #16 of 28
I would raise hell with the Dr. that would expect tylenol or advil to be enough for pain after surgery.
They even give you Lortab or something similar after dental surgery.
That is ridiculous for her to suffer when the drugs are so easily available.
It's not like she is abusing the drug. Geesh!
post #17 of 28
My bf's mum got to go home after 4 hours of giving birth, here they dont let you stay longer than a day.
Infact the longest time she stayed in a hospital was 28 hours! and she has had 5 kids.
My mother stayed in hospital for 3 - 4 days. In england
post #18 of 28
That's just not right! Blame the HMO's for the short hospital stays that are getting to be the norm

They should have given her pain killers, I don't understand why they didn't.

Get well vibes going to your future MIL.
post #19 of 28
This is a very touchy subject for me. Call the ER and talk to a doctor there. That should have never happened. I went through a full hystermoctomy(?) and was sent home with nothing for pain. I was cut from one side of my body to the other side. My Mom called the ER and the ER doctor called in a script for me. The next time I saw the surgeon who did my surgery wasn't nice either, cause I let him have it with both barrels.....the B@$&*%d
post #20 of 28
I often think my cats get better medical care than I do. It's because vets are getting paid by me, so I presume as long as I am willing to pay, the cats will be treated. Obviously, since insurance companies don't want to pay for anybody to stay in the hospital for a long time after surgery, patients are getting kicked out.
post #21 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by mamacat
Now THAT is nuts.
Yup!! Agree with this comment about the open heart surgery. My Dad had a quadruple bypass and his aortic heart valve replaced and he was released in four days. Luckily he had six kids and we took turns caring for him 24/7. AND luckily he doesn't remember most of it. We spent a lot of time talking and checking with his health care providers. You gotta stay on top of it nowadays.

Mommacat sending lots of healing thoughts to your MIL. May her recovery be swift.
post #22 of 28
6 years ago when I broke my ankle the ankle repair, which required general anesthesia and a scalpel was also considered outpatient surgery. I think anything under a certain amount of time is now considered outpatient because when the surgery ended up taking over 3 hours I ended up being transferred to the hospital.
post #23 of 28
My mom had her gallbladder out last month and I couldnt beleive it was out patient surgery, especially since she's had a heart attack and triple bypass,they did keep her for observation '' a little longer'' but I was freeking out. I wouldnt leave her house out of fear that I would have to rush her back to the hospital.
post #24 of 28
Thank insurance companies....
I work with elderly/disabled medicaid clients, and one who I did an application on the other day was discharged from the hospital after 23 hours just because her Medicare secondary insurance wouldn't pay. 3 hours before she was discharged, her brother checked on her and talked to her doc...he was told that she would be there at least a few days.
Rediculous....

I hope your MIL is okay...DEFINITELY call and raise some cain for them not giving her any pain killers!!
post #25 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by blondiecat
This is a very touchy subject for me. Call the ER and talk to a doctor there. That should have never happened. I went through a full hystermoctomy(?) and was sent home with nothing for pain. I was cut from one side of my body to the other side. My Mom called the ER and the ER doctor called in a script for me. The next time I saw the surgeon who did my surgery wasn't nice either, cause I let him have it with both barrels.....the B@$&*%d
GOOD for you!
it takes MONTHS to recover from that!
That doctor should have his license revoked along with some others mentioned in this thread.
post #26 of 28
Everything seems to be outpatient now. I've had two surgeries that required general anesthesia and both times have gone home the same day.

Remember, the federal government had to pass a law so that women who had just given birth were not made to leave the hospital within 24 hours after. It's awful!
post #27 of 28
Thread Starter 
Thanks to those of you who sent good vibes for my future m-i-l. I went over to see her at the house yesterday, and we finally were able to get her some meds--the doc she works for called the pharmacy with a scrip. When I was talking to her though I found out that the surgeon never came back to see her after the surgery to clear her for discharge, but the hospital sent her home anyway. Not only that, but no one bothered to give her any instructions for post-op care--she didn't even know whether her incision had been closed with staples, dissolving stitches, or the kind of stitches that have to be removed, and didn't know if she could shower or only take sponge baths. They gave her no discharge papers either.

Anyway, we were with her for a bit yesterday and then, after we left, my fiance's sister came over to be with her for a while. We went over this morning to bring her the paper and she was feeling a lot more comfortable--thanks to the meds.

I CANNOT believe that hospital or that surgeon. I know she needs to file a complaint but she doesn't want to make trouble.
post #28 of 28
Oh that's so sad!

I hope she is doing alright though!!
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