Disabled People’s Hospital Stories ft. Jessica Kellgren-Fozard | Vlogmas Day 20

[pencil writing] [Pokemon game sound] So in today’s Vlogmas I am super excited, because I get to do a collaboration
with a wonderful friend of mine. You may know who she is,
her name is Jessica Kellgren-Fozard. I don’t know if that’s how you pronounce
her name, but we’ll go with that. She is a deaf, British YouTuber. She is also someone with chronic pain
and chronic illness. And she talks about her life being deaf,
chronically ill, having chronic pain. We have similarities in
some of those departments. And she also does stuff about like vintage
fashion and beauty. She is absolutely beautiful and phenomenal, so I’m very excited to do this video
with her today. We are going to talk about
hospital horror stories. So that means we went to a hospital
once upon a time, and we had an absolutely terrible experience
and we want to share that. Now because Jessica is my guest, I’m going to allow her to go first
so you can learn a little bit about her and then we’re going to move on to me. So without further ado, let’s go to Jessica. Hi, I’m Jessica. I am a disabled YouTuber from England. I have two conditions, one of which is
a mixed connective tissue disorder and the other is Hereditary Neuropathy
with Liability to Pressure Palsies. Ahem. Basically what this means
is that my connective tissue and my nerves
both don’t work particularly well. These are inherited conditions that I have
from my parents, and they have a range of symptoms from
chronic fatigue and chronic pain to making all of my limbs very floppy,
and also deafness. It also has cognitive problems like making me
very forgetful et cetera and my organs don’t always work. So I’ve had my disabilities all of my life. I’ve been in hospital many, many times. Sometimes it’s been OK,
as OK as it can be going into hospital. Sometimes it’s been horrific. (LAUGHS) Generally, A&E is the worst place on earth. So A&E is our ER room,
the emergency department at the hospital. Because my conditions aren’t very common
and people generally have to Google them, so the doctor in A&E will be just
Googling away, trying to work out what the hell is wrong
with me and what to do with me. Of all the times that I have been in there, the story that I’m about to tell you
is probably the worst. So as I said, I had problems with my organs. And for a few weeks I had been bleeding
from bits that you shouldn’t bleed from. We’ll leave it at that. Bits of your body that blood should
not come out of. Then I woke up one morning and just
was in the worst pain possibly I have… well, no, the worst pain I’ve ever felt,
because boy that was bad, one of the worst pains, definitely. It was a full ten on the pain scale, a full ten. It wasn’t good. So I’m lying there in incredible pain. I’m vomiting continuously,
there’s nothing I can really do. I can’t lift my head, I can’t really open my eyes
and I can’t speak. Fortunately, my wife is right next to me in bed. So obviously she calls in to work like, “I’m definitely not coming in today.
No, no, no.” But I’m lying there, she’s like, “Please, can we…can we go to a doctor?
Can I take you to hospital?” And I’m like, “No, no don’t.
Oh, God no”. Because I hate A&E so much, I hate it. It’s the worst place on earth. It’s the…you go there, you’re there for hours,
it’s always miserable. No. No, no, I’m going to fight through this. Never a good idea. I’m going to fight through this
and I’m going to feel better, yes. Yeah, why would I think that would happen? I don’t know. So a full 12 hours later (LAUGHS), I’m still in the same position, of course. I literally have not moved from the bed – still vomiting, still in intense pain,
and it’s kind of gotten worse. And by kind of, I mean really, really has. And it’s 7pm at night and Claudia has spent the day phoning
my GP, who said, “Oh, yeah. We’ll come round.
We’ll do a house visit to check she’s OK”. Did they? No, no. She rang up another five times and got
the out-of-hours office, who said, “Oh, yeah. We’ll arrange for a doctor
to phone you”. Did they? No. Mmm-mm mm. So she finally rings 111, which is our non-emergency
emergency medical line. You ring 999 for an ambulance,
you ring 111 for medical advice. She rings 111. They’re like,
“Yeah, that does sound pretty bad, yeah. “So you say she hasn’t moved
in 24 hours?” (LAUGHS) “She literally has…she’s not got
out of the bed. “She hasn’t moved in 24 hours. “All she’s done is vomit and lie there in pain. “Also, she hasn’t been to the toilet,
that might be a bad thing.” I should add, the incredible pain was not
only in my head, but also in my general body area,
especially my kidneys, which hurt like… And my vomit had kind of turned
a funny colour at this point. It was bile, obviously, but it was a very dark yellow bile. And, poor Claud thought, “OK, well uh,
well so the ambulance is coming?” “Yeah, so…so you’re going to send
an ambulance?” “Yep, yep. We’re going to send
an ambulance definitely, definitely.” They ring 999, they ring us back, “Yep, the ambulance will come. Obviously it’s
not an emergency, so they’ll be there soon.” Why is it not an emergency? Oh, because I have a chronic illness.
Hmm. So this is not a difference to me. If I was normally absolutely fine and then was
in this position, that would be an emergency. However, since Claudia’s told them
I have a chronic illness and disability, so this is not, you know,
it’s happened before-ish. Not this bad, but it’s happened. They’re like, OK, secondary…
secondary emergency. OK, fine, don’t mind me. So the ambulance finally turns
up at 11pm at night, and I’ve not moved since pfft,
probably 7pm the day before, and have not been able to drink anything,
obviously, because I’ve been sick. I’ve not…also, I take a lot of prescription
medication that I have to take at specific times of day or else I’m in immense
amounts of pain and, you know, this happens. Spiral, I spiral down, it’s not good. I can’t miss any of these pills, but because I haven’t been able to hold
anything down for over 24 hours, I’ve not been able to take
my pills either. So I’m now feeling the side-effects
of withdrawal, along with whatever the hell is wrong with me. So the ambulance crew turn up
and ambulance people are the best. They are angels in a dark, dark world. I can’t sing the praises enough
of ambulance people. They are the most fantastic beings. So they turn up and, believe me, I’ve tried every antiemetic drug under the sun
and not a single one of them has worked. The only thing that stops is IV antiemetic. Antiemetic means it stops you being sick. So, antiemetic and oh, finally, I can take
a sip of water without spewing it everywhere. Oh, delightful. So good. And then they give me some morphine,
mmm, which is good stuff. It’s really good stuff. And then it’s like, “Oh, yeah.
This pain is gone. “I mean it’s not gone, it’s still there,
but I don’t care. Wow! “I’m aware the pain exists, I’m aware the world
exists, but I’m so high right now”. And they managed to get me out of my house
and into the ambulance, believe me if I wasn’t on the morphine I’d have been very strongly saying
do not take me out of my house, I don’t want to go to A&E. Just give me more drugs here. But unfortunately when they put
a needle in your arm, that means that you have to go to A&E,
which sucks. Because believe me, there are so many times
I want to call the ambulance and just be like, “antiemetic, please? “Please, don’t make me go to A&E, just put it
right in there. “Just don’t make me go to A&E. “I’m fine, I just need to stop being sick”” I think by the time you get there it probably,
it’s probably about midnight. Which, since the hospital is two streets
away from my house, tells you how long it took me
to get out of my bed and into that ambulance. So we get to the A&E and, again,
still classified now as not an emergency. Now late at night, obviously, the staff aren’t delighted to have someone
there who’s not classified as an emergency. They’re busy saving lives, you know. People get stabbed, having heart attacks, there are other, you know, life-threatening
illnesses and injuries going on. I mean, I think mine is pretty bad, but I mean,
it’s not… You know, I wasn’t stabbed or anything,
so I understand that. I understand that, that’s fine.
I can wait. You’ve given me the good drugs,
I’m lying in my bed. I’m kind of out of it. But the pain is still so bad that
I can’t actually open my eyes, that might also have something to do
with being high, but mainly it’s the pain. So I can’t open my eyes,
which for a deaf person is not great, because how am I supposed
to communicate? So lying there, eyes closed, really bad pain,
pain enough that I can’t move without… I mean it’s OK now, the drugs have made it
so I can lie still and it’s OK. If I move though, the pain comes right back
and boom, eugh. I’m going to vomit. Terrible pain, might pass out. So the doctor comes over,
Claudia explains my whole medical condition. Claudia, by the way, has just been sat
on the chair next to my hospital bed, playing Candy Crush on her phone. That’s what happens when you married to a
disabled person, you get way too used to hospitals. You don’t care. So the doctor comes over. Claudia explains this is her condition,
this is probably what is happening, but we’re not sure. I’ve tried to ring this people, this people
and this people. Also, she’s deaf and she appears to be
in such pain that she can’t open her eyes, so she’s not going to understand
what you’re saying. The doctor, who I think is like a young,
I’m going to say she was about 24, 25. I don’t remember so clearly,
but Claudia has told me this. So she’s just a bit younger than us,
not hugely. And she looks at me, and she obviously
disregards everything Claudia has just said, because no. And she starts talking to me, OK. She starts telling me to open my eyes, that she knows I can open my eyes,
that I’m totally fine. “Come on, the pain’s not that bad. “Don’t make a big deal out of it.” I’m sorry, what? And again, telling me this, eyes closed,
no clue what’s going on. No clue what is going on. She starts getting really annoyed with me, that I won’t open my eyes and look at her and
that I’m not responding when she talks to me. Again, Claudia is there like, “Deaf, she’s deaf. “She can’t hear you. “She’s not going to respond to you.
OK?” And the doctor’s like,
“Well can’t you just tell her then?” “No, ’cause I’m not magic.” I mean, I don’t think she said that,
but she definitely should have said that. I cannot talk to her right now,
I can try and communicate with her, but she’s not necessarily going to understand. She’s also in such bad pain that I’m not sure she can comprehend
what’s going on right now. But I’m lying there, the doctor keeps trying
and trying and trying, and she’s getting really, really frustrated. So Claudia keeps trying to communicate
with me instead. She eventually gets me to open my eyes,
which I can…the pain is so bad. I will force myself through this pain. What is it, wife? What do you need to tell me? What is so important that I’ve got to keep
going through this pain to look at you? And she’s like, “Yeah, I’m really sorry, but the doctor she just
wants to talk to you about something?” (LAUGHS) OK, no, I get it. You’ve
got to explain your symptoms. Yeah, got to explain them. OK, OK, OK. So I’m trying to explain,
trying to tell her about the pain, how bad it is. She’s asking me questions, I’m like “I cannot comprehend what
you are saying right now, OK? The pain is so bad. You have to sign at me, or, like,
I can’t lip read right now.” A) You’re super far away from me, B) The pain is so bad I can’t look in one place
and just concentrate on what’s happening and C) You’re just not the nicest person, OK? I’m not going to say that lip reading is easier
when someone is nice to you but… So Claudia tries to translate what
the doctor is saying to me and eventually the doctor kind of works
out that we think I’ve got kidney stones. Well, we’re like “here are all the symptoms”
and she goes “Oh, so it sounds like you think you have
kidney stones” I’m like “Well, I guess that
would make sense, yes.” I should add here that Claudia
comes from a medical family, her father’s a doctor,
her mother’s a doctor. Sorry, her father’s a doctor, her
sister’s a doctor, her mother was a nurse. Claudia herself is a dentist who also has
a degree in anatomy. She knows shiz about bodies, OK? She knows what she’s talking about. She’s like “Yes, actually,
that does seem to make sense and correlate.” She thinks back at what has been
happening recently, yep, no, I really think that is kidney stones,
yep. And the doctor’s like “Mm, no. “You definitely don’t have kidney stones,
I’ve seen grown men “crawling in here on their hands and knees
with the pain of kidney stones, you’re fine.” Pain is a very subjective thing, I’m not sure how you can measure my pain
against someone else’s pain. Also, and Claudia tries to point this out to her,
not only do I take incredibly strong pain killer
medication every single day as part of my prescription. My medication actually partially stops the pain
synapses in my brain from firing. It’s not possible for me to feel all of the pain
that my body is currently experiencing. Also I have a very high,
very high threshold for pain. An example, I tore the ligament in my left foot
when I was 15. It swelled up to the size of a football
and was black, however, because my family
and I were on a tour of Tuscany at the time, I decided it would be a great idea to walk on it
around the beautiful city of Siena. So Claudia tries to explain to this woman that my pain threshold is very high,
I take these medications. That I am always. That part of my disability is also that I cannot, that I don’t always understand what
signals my nerves are giving me. So my nerves, I can have a massive bruise,
and it won’t hurt me. You can prod it, you can touch it,
it won’t hurt me. Because those nerves in that area
of my body just aren’t… They just won’t send pain signals. They just don’t. And the doctor still, still does not believe me. So she proceeds to give me the longest
and rudest talking down about how I have come in and wasted time that could be
used by someone who actually is in need. Could be used by someone for whom her
skills could really be life saving. Because I am just a waste of resources. Okay then. Great. So she refuses to give me
any more painkillers. And just, discharges me. Just discharges me. Sends me home. So we have to get a taxi, even though
I can’t actually stand upright. Claudia has to come, like,
drag me out of A&E. Not the first time I’ve been mistakenly been
dragged out of A&E. And put in the back of the taxi, we go home
and what happens the next day? I passed a kidney stone. Oh well. In retrospect I should have sent
her a card to tell her that. With the kidney stone in it. But that would have been weird, right? I hope you’ve enjoyed this little
medical mystery storytime. Now back to Rikki. Thank you Jessica for sharing your story. Now, for me. So, on October 30, 2014 I was in a car wreck, I was supposed to go meet with my friend
Whitney for dinner and on the way there somebody smacked into me. I passed this kid who was kind of on
the road beside a cemetery. He was just sitting there
and he backs up suddenly, really really fast. Not like, oh I’m going to roll back a little bit because I don’t want to hit people, it was, I’m
going at the speed of light and it’s weird. And all I could think was,
“please do not come my way.” I was stopped on the road because somebody needed to make a turn and there was traffic
coming, you know, the opposite way. So we had to wait. Long story short, this kid smacks into me,
damages my truck, my big truck. He has a little car and I have a big truck and then the bed was smushed down this way
and then also smushed up this way in two different spots.
It was awful. I had back pain, head pain, basically everything I’ve already had for all
these years but amplified. And originally I said I didn’t want to go
to the hospital because I didn’t want to deal with insurance but they were like,
the insurance will pay for it blah, blah, blah. And I knew I was going to sue this kid because he was high on drugs
when he crashed into me. I knew it. The paramedics that came to us were very,
very kind and the police officer that was there. I told them, “Hi, I’m deaf,
I don’t hear very well. “I can hear that you’re talking to me but I have
no idea what you’re telling me right now “because it’s not loud enough, so, can you
please be patient with me, write things down.” And stuff like that. Very, very kind people. And I went into the ambulance, they put me
on a stretcher thing and they had wrapped towels on my head, because they
were afraid I had a concussion, or whatever. Or maybe that was just standard that
they do anyway. But then he had the towels on my ears which
makes me hear absolutely nothing. And then they stuck it together with some tape
and we were on our way. And they would ask me questions
and they would point. So if they needed my birthday
they would have the form and they would point to birthday and I would
tell them, stuff like that, any allergies. You know. So that was awesome,
if you’re a paramedic, take note. You don’t have to know sign language, you don’t even have to write it down,
if it’s on the paper, just point. So I get to the hospital, and I’m in the waiting
room and this is just where all hell broke loose. It’s really a lot of the same thing over
and over. I told the nurse, she was talking to me and I’m like “Hi, I wouldn’t be able to hear
and understand you very well “if I was here without this contraption around
my head but now I really cannot hear you “at all so please write it down,
point to something.” Very simple instructions, requests. And I was being very polite
but they did not want to accommodate. And this isn’t like me going to a random
stranger and asking for directions and them not accomodating me,
that’s one thing entirely and while I might be upset that they
are not willing to accommodate that and they like run away
because they think I have the plague. That is completely different to something
like a hospital whose job is to take
care of me and is under ADA law. And needs to accommodate me
because the law says so. So they would just look at me and walk off and they would just keep on talking and
talking and this went on for about an hour. I was at this hospital for an hour,
two hours, two and a half hours. Eventually it got to a point, right before when my friend came over
because I told her what happened. And I yelled at them. I’m someone that will give
somebody about three chances to do some sort of accommodation
before I get very, very angry. The first time, I’m very nice, the second time I’m kind of like,
okay I’m gonna be nice but I’m also gonna be like,
“Come on now this a hospital.” The third time, I’m going to get mad and then the
fourth time I’m going to get really, really upset. So it got to the point where I literally yelled. Insulting words may have been thrown around
and I told them, “Can you imagine if you gave me
something that I’m allergic to and killed me? “I need you to write things down or point
or do anything visual to help me out. “Because I’m trying to get you to do your job
accurately as well as easily as possible.” And that’s something I don’t think people
seem to understand. When deaf people ask you to write, or point at things, it’s not to make things
harder for you, it’s to make things it’s to make things easier for both of us because nobody wants to repeat themselves
five times and nobody wants to misunderstand something
five times. Especially in an environment like a hospital. So that happened and I’m just sitting
here like, “If I give you the wrong answer,
something bad could happen.” so finally it worked out, they finally
wrote for me and then I got to the actual doctor’s room and this is where my friend was
here so she was going to help me out. Because the doctor sure wasn’t. Actually, I had a second nurse that came
around and he was actually very, very nice. This was when I got to the room. But then the doctor comes, the main,
official doctor. Went through the whole spiel
“Hi, deaf, please write, point,” you know, we’re going to meet halfway here. I will talk to you, you write to me
or something make things easier, you know? Nope. Oh no, oh no. Not only that but this is someone who would literally turn around every time he’s talking
so his back is completely facing me and I’m just going, no. It’s one thing, if I can’t understand you
when you’re talking when you’re like facing me but it’s another if
you’re turning your back every single time. And I was just like
“Excuse me, I need you to look at me.” And then eventually we both were just like,
“Yo! Deaf, hey, turn back this way please.” That’s my hospital horror story. And that is a horror story for so many other
deaf and hard of hearing people, there have been deaf, pregnant mothers who
have sued hospitals in Miami because they’re terrible. Please, hospital,s for the love of all things holy, accommodation is great
and actually make things easier. Especially in an environment where if
anything happens, if anything bad happens the end result is
probably going to be bad. So, yeah.
If you have any hospital horror stories that you want to share,
feel free to leave them down in the comments. Thank you so much Jessica for telling your
story. And make sure to check out her channel. I’ll have it in a card and I’ll have a description
down in the info box below. If you want to follow me on my social media I have my usernames down here. If you want to send a letter or anything I have my PO Box right up there. Patreon and last video over there. And Ko-Fi jar, tip jar down there below in the info box and comments and I will see you tomorrow. Bye.

100 thoughts on “Disabled People’s Hospital Stories ft. Jessica Kellgren-Fozard | Vlogmas Day 20

  1. One would expect hospitals to know something about hospitality.

    More seriously, it looks like you both had doctors who took the job, not out of compassion for others, but only for the high pay check.

  2. I have two. I have a rare disease that causes me to be in the hospital A LOT. So I have quite a few bad stories, but these two popped into my head first.

    First, I had to go in for emergency surgery. I had an umbilical (belly button) hernia. This had happened to me before. They gave me a bunch of pain meds, had me hold onto the bed and after 15 minutes popped it back in. It hurt SO bad, but it was done. I asked if I could go to class and they said I needed surgery wasn't leaving. The next day the anesthesiologist yelled at me that this surgery was unnecessary and I was too high risk (veryyyy difficult to intubate) and I was wasting his time.
    The second one, after major spine surgery (c1-c6) I was taken down to MRI. my pain meds had begun to wear off. The MRI took about 30-45 minutes. I was removed from the machine, and placed off to the side. The hospital was very busy that day and they had a long line of patients waiting. I laid there in the bed until someone pushed me into a room nearby and said I would have to wait there until someone could bring me back to my room. The medicine had worn off and I was crying quietly so I wouldn't annoy those around me. I look around the room and realize they had shoved me a storage room with random chairs and wet floor signs. At this point i start yelling to see if anyone could hear me. After some time, this guy walks up and says "hey there you are! I couldn't find you. Let's get you back up to your room". When I get back up my Mom informs me she had started getting worried because I was gone for over 2 hours! IN A STORAGE ROOM

  3. Rikki and Jessica, in spite of it all, let me wish you both a wonderful Christmas!

  4. I was in a mental hospital a few years ago and they mistreated me because of my diabetes (type 1). I woke up in the middle of the night because my blood sugar felt low. I left my room (which you're not supposed to do) and went to the nurse's station so they could check my blood sugar. It was 90ish which is borderline low for me. They sent me back to bed. About 15-30 mins later I could not fall asleep and still felt low (when my blood sugar is low I can't fall asleep). I walked back out out my room and asked to check y blood sugar again, the nurse refused. She said that it has to be fine because she checked it 15 minutes ago. I told her that it can drop very quickly, so I need to check just to make sure. She said that was bullshit. I told her that she doesnt understand diabetes, and she responded with so much attitude "umm no I DO understand diabetes." I hoped that I would die from hypoglycemia so that she could go to jail for negligence. I started to walk back to my room quietly sobbing, but another nurse said "Don't let them go back to their room. Take them to the quiet room." So I spent the night in the "quiet room" as punishment, with a nurse sitting in a chair outside, watching me (it's a room with no bed, just a mattress, and it looked like an actual abandoned 1950s asylum room. It was disgusting.) This could all have been avoided if that lazy fucking nurse would just pull my blood sugar meter out and let me check so that I could have peace of mind.

  5. Okay that doctor Jessica saw was awful, also in addition to ambulance crews, from experience of also being in and out hospital nurses are also awesome.

  6. Thank you for this. The rude woman in Jessica's story is sadly something I can relate to. I had massive infection that spread into my bloodstream and caused a whole array of symptoms, including what eventually was diagnosed as bronchial spasms. So, I am having problems breathing (not yet know that it's bronchial spasms) and I end up in the hospital, literally very short of breath and kind of gasp-y, and this nurse yells at me "Oh, just stop it already. You're fine. Just stop it." Meanwhile, not fine. Not dying. Never said I was. Didn't come into the ER exclaiming "it's all over!!!" but also not doing the breathing as comfortably as usual. Eventually it passed as it did, and I was released (a doctor told me to get an inhaler) but was highly confused as to why this nurse yelled at me.

  7. I avoid hospitals and doctors like the plague. I've had issues with my kidneys since I was about 6 months old when I had my first UTI. I ended up in a Children's hospital when I was about 9 months old because the infections had gotten so bad. They did a couple of procedures to open things up and the UTIs stopped for awhile but my kidneys were damaged from the process. When I was 6 they started again and I was put in the hospital after my 5th or 6th one in a short amount of time and they ran a bunch of awful tests. My regular doctor and urologist were both present for some reason while these tests were being done. They started arguing about what the test showed right in front of me. Eventually they moved outside of the room but they were yelling and cussing at each other so loudly I could hear every word. For a 6 year old who is already in pain and terrified, that was absolutely awful! I'm allergic to several different medicines and I can't tell you how many doctors have made me tell them when I took them and what kind of reaction I had and tried to tell me throwing up so much I ended up in the ER extremely dehydrated wasn't a reaction. Most of them I break out in hives and swell like a balloon. But one of them I threw up 30+ times in 6 hour period…but that's not a reaction. Well you might not call it a reaction but I'm still not taking the stuff again.

  8. I got a third degree burn from a motorcycle falling on my leg. The local rural hospital didn’t clean it out and wrapped it with plain cotton and it got infected and oozed green. I was in college on that rural area and the nurse there told me that it was normal to ooze green. A friend drove me several hours away to another hospital that was horrified at the treatment of the burn and had to clean it out and give plastic coated bandages made for burns and antibiotics for the infection that had set in. That same rural hospital was where I was taken after I was hit by a car when walking on campus. My joints are loose and pop out a lot in their own. Well my hip had subluxed and was badly bruised because that was where the jeep Cherokee had clipped me. Well they focused on that even though I said my back hurt a lot and they missed annular tears in my L5 S1 and S2 vertebrae and since it was missed I had them for so long that I missed the window for steroid injections that can help them heal properly. So now they’re just damaged and I have chronic back, hip, and leg pain from it.

  9. I was so excited to see that you and Jessica did collabs on each other's channels. It was really hard to decide whose video to watch first, if it was possible I would watch both at the same time.

    A question that popped in my head, as I'm almost finished with listening to Jessica hospital horror story is, incases where you have emergency and in you're in huge amounts of pain, and for some reason or other signing isn't a option, have you thought about using technology to help in the way Molly Burke would because she's blind and voice over helps, or using tactile signing??

    I'm sorry if those are questions that get asked a lot, or are just really dumb and I don't know any better as a hearing able person.

  10. Have you introduced Jessica to Molly Burke channel? Since Molly is blind and Jessica is blind in one eye but also deaf, I feel like they could collab and they'd have a ton knowledge to share with people who don't normally watch their channels. Is that silly?

  11. I had a really negative experience with the people in the ambulance and in the hospital itself.
    The ambulance guys told me I only had a panic attack and I wasn't actually in immense pain. Was treated accordingly in the hospital, all because I told them that I have depression and other mental illnesses like trauma. So I wasn't treated correctly.
    Turns out that I had a really inflamed muscle and because it took so long before my general doctor started the correct treatment what would usually take maybe 2 weeks on anti-inflammatory drugs took over 2 months before I could use my left arm normally.
    Another month of physical therapy after, because I'm left handed and couldn't lift my fucking arm or could properly hold a pencil.
    All of this was during my electrician apprenticeship.

  12. I have hEDS, so I've been to the hospital a few times for knee dislocations that wouldn't reduce on their own. Well, the first time I dislocated my knee was awful. I was taken to the hospital by ambulance, and when I got there I was left in a room for upwards of an hour with my knee dislocated and a sheet over it so I didn't have to look at my kneecap on the wrong side of my leg. So eventually when the doctor finally came in, he clearly hadn't read my chart. How do I know? Well, he walked in and gave a "friendly" slap to the outside of my knee where my kneecap was. It hurt like ABSOLUTE HELL. It eventually went back in, but he didn't put me out for the relocation like I wanted so I had the fun of experiencing that pain as well.

    There was also the time that I was self-harming, cut too deep, and was perp-walked out of my apartment to the hospital by cops who arranged to get me grilled for 90 minutes by a psych while I was handcuffed & bleeding, before I got any medical attention.

    And recently, I'm in the middle of a new horrible doctor story. I've been having vertigo, nausea, fluctuating hearing distortions, and so on for the last two weeks(with this last week being awful). I went to an urgent care clinic who "removed ear wax." Turns out he just impacted what was there, and I had to see my PCP yesterday who removed it, swore that would do the job, and gave me an automated audiometry test(yeah, I don't trust that as far as I can spit) whose supposed results I had to read to her because I have a slight background in audiology and she doesn't actually know how to read audiograms. She told me to call back today or tomorrow if symptoms persisted and we could double check the ear and set up an ENT referral . Of course the symptoms returned in like 4 hours, even worse than before, it feels like someone just pushes me over when the vertigo hits while standing, so I called back and she's on Christmas vacation .

    So I'm basically stuck until at least January 2nd fending for myself and hoping the symptoms just…disappear or something. And that they aren't indicative of something more serious. Fantastic.

  13. I'm Deaf, but don't really have anything in the way of horror stories relating to hospital care, except for one incident where I was waiting and waiting and waiting and waiting to be discharged from ER. Finally (!!) this oldish doctor shows up to tell me….well, what he told me was basically "blahblahblahblahblahblah" and so forth and so on. No terp, no interest in writing things for me. Didn't really have a clue what he was going on about.

  14. Not so much a hospital horror story, but just an anecdote about how frustrating chronic illness is! I have a thyroid disorder, and I've been told by basically everyone over the age of 30 besides those who've dealt with it themselves (doctors, co-workers, employers, friends, lovers) that I am too young (I'm 27, was 25 when diagnosed and 23 when I first experienced symptoms) to be in so much pain/be sick so often/be tired…. really…REALLY?!? I can definitely appreciate Jessica's sense of humor.

  15. It's so crazy to me how people aren't willing to accomodate someone. We had a lady come in the clinic where I work….today…I think. And someone from the front desk came back to our area and said "Who's going to pull __ back for paperwork?" And one of my co-workers said she had her named pulled and they said "She's deaf, and doesn't have anyone with her. Can I go ahead and bring her back." and they said sure and immediately went to get a notepad out and the receptionist was like "oh she's typing everything on her phone and passing it back forth to us." and we were like "oh well that's even easier" not one thought of "well we can't do this." or just give her the paperwork instead of processing her information like we normally do. We just went to plan B immediately. It's….not…difficult.

  16. It doesn’t make for a super interesting story, but for someone with Spina Bifida (me) I often get the usual hospital staff not understanding how serious latex allergy is and that it can and will cause anephelactic (sp?) shock and death. I’ve actually had hospital staff mock that allergy. I guess enough people now have a latex allergy that hospitals/drs offices take it seriously, but when I was younger, it was a problem. Also, just your basic drs offices need to get better at interacting with people with service dogs, because they are sometimes the worst at treating a service dog like a pet, wich makes getting the proper care for the human harder.

  17. Jessica's story pissed me off beyond belief. Medical professionals are often the worst with the way they minimise what people, especially women it has been observed, say to them because pffft, you can't understand what your own body is telling you, fool!

  18. Oh man, these stories…. I can’t believe how terrible some people can be!! It’s really not that hard to slow down our speech or point/write things down… in fact, it’s not that hard to just be generally nice!!!

    I’m glad you guys had good experiences with the ambulance, but, man. Hospitals are bad enough without the added frustrations of the doctors being uncooperative & not understanding!! 😤

  19. When I had a kidney stone they misdiagnosed me with appendicitis…so in preparation for an appendectomy they had me completely fasting and not drinking anything for about 12 hours in the ER. I'd come in first thing in the morning, so I ended up not drinking anything at all for more than 24 hours total–the worst thing you can do for a kidney stone!! I also have a chronic illness that requires me to stay hydrated, so I got very dehydrated, sick, and weak and I ended up having to be admitted to the hospital. To their credit, despite the misdiagnosis, many of the professionals were very kind to me. However, before I was given any pain medication or any instructions whatsoever, one of the nurses scolded me for whimpering in pain, and yelled at my father for offering me a water bottle when I said I was thirsty. I do understand that being an ER nurse must be very trying work and I salute those who do it. But that is not an excuse to be cruel, impatient, or dismissive to people who are likely having a traumatic experience. Compassionate care really makes a world of difference.

  20. Not a hospital, those have been great except for the bills. From 16-18 I went to my mom's doctor because mine unfortunately had decided to leave the practice.
    This doctor for some reason didn't believe any young teen could have any medical problems and she refused to do so many things because it went against how SHE felt. One of the biggest incidents is I have asthma. It's generally not caused by restrictions but because I get constant mild, very low grade lung infections. But she didn't feel comfortable testing me for what I had. So she simply said oh your mom had bronchitis last month so obviously that's what you have, in her words, "your lungs sound awful but I don't feel comfortable with a 17 year old getting a chest scan. So I'll just prescribe you the medication."
    Surprise that cough never went away, my mucus stayed a very very green color(which means infection) and when I finished the antibiotics and nothing got better I went to an emergency room where wow, my lung function had dropped to a ratio of 30% which is not good. Basically means something is severally wrong. And at that point I had to take steroids 4 times a day for 3 months for damage, caused by a stupid doctor.
    Not cheap.
    Could have been avoided.

  21. Oh dear, that kidney stone business is such a mess. I had to take my fiance to an ER for a kidney stone (didn't know that was what it was at the time) and after waiting OVER 12 HOURS in the ER, finally got to see a doctor. But no one would take him seriously that he was in pain because he was simultaneously young and healthy-looking (he's got a couple invisible health issues), but not acting like he was in enough pain for it to be a real kidney stone.

  22. There was this time when I had a feeding tube. I had had the tube for almost a year so I was very familiar with everything related to it and knew when something is wrong. When you have a feeding tube, before any feeding you have to extract some stomach acid. One day, nothing came out and caused my stomach to contract. We went to the ER and I said that I knew what was happening and it had happened before- the end had curled into my esophagus. I was in immense pain and couldn't speak at this point and no one knew asl so couldn't do that. They ended up putting me through an X-ray which is very expensive just to find out that I was correct. Bottom line: listen to your patient- they know their pain better than you

  23. My biggest gripe is medical professionals asking me if I read lips. Ummmm not reliable please write down…..really……really….are you sure you just can’t read my lips ….write down please

  24. Sorry to hear of both horror stories. In both cases complaints should have been filed. The hospitals need to do better in training their staff when dealing with the deaf community. So very sad….😤😩😬

  25. The time a guy a pressure sore while IN the hospital for my rod placement. They forgot to reposition me and I got a bedsore. Good thing it didn't become infected.

  26. Ambos = Good
    Specialist doctors that know what the ** they are talking about = good
    ER doctors = worst human beings ever

  27. I can really relate to this. I've been sick for the past week, but I can't go see my specialist because it's close to Christmas. And I really don't want to take a trip to the hospital. Because *internal screaming*.

  28. Yes paramedics are saints. I can’t imagine what it’s like to be a medic and I’ve dreamed of being one myself. Their hours and pay are the worst though. They do at a minimum the work of a doctor. Only thing I don’t see are medics that are specialists! It’s so much pressure and they do very physical level of care

  29. At the very least hospitals need to have INTERPRETATORS on staff for the love of god. But personally, as a medical professional myself i think learning basic sign language should be a required part of our curriculum, as unlike the general population we will see a higher demographic of deaf or HoH people in our lives and it would just make patient care much better if we all knew SOME sign language. It surprises me to no end that its not required curriculum.

  30. I once went to the hospital with high blood pressure and high blood sugar and the doctors were like "no there's nothing wrong" and then my mom took me to a different hospital and it turned out I had a urinary tract infection, which could have damaged my kidneys.

  31. I am SO sorry for the experiences you and others face in emergency situations. I live 3 miles from our local ER. I’m considering offering myself as a free interpreter for them. Our family has an abundance of medical professionals and each knows the strengths and weaknesses of their hospitals. I’ve got many of the same health issues as Jessica and recurring kidney stones (about every 2-3 months). I’ve absolutely had similar hospital horrors. I’ve also had it go the other way. Ive gone in strictly for medication to stop vomiting and they nearly drug me into a coma. There seems to be no middle ground.

  32. Sounds like the time I went to A&E with fever, signs of infection and a horrible pain in the right side of the stomach.. any idiot would see that appendicitis would be likely.. After 8 hours in the waiting room I get to see the doctor, he litterally pokes my stomach once and tells me that I must have pulled a muscle (!) He tell me off for wasting his time and taking up space, and sends me home. The next day I return by ambulance and is rushed in to surgery.. for a ruptured appendix! When I'm waking up after the operation the doctor and colegues come by on their rounds and all he says is "I guess it was appendicitis then"..

  33. I have no idea if ambulance doctors in the US will give you an IV, as I have never called them. I don't know anyone who has called them. They are too expensive.

    But when I go to the Emergency Room for pain they make me wait about 3 hours before I'm seen as I'm "non-emergent" due to my on-record condition. But then they still won't give me any medicine for another few hours. Every time I go they need to "rule out" other issues "just in case". But then why wasn't I considered emergent if you can't trust your own hospital system's diagnosis? And then they proceed to say "it's not that bad" and "let's just try these three medicines we give you every time you come to the ER and we know never work". So when I go to the ER for pain it takes about 10 hours before I am finally given good drugs, if I am lucky. 3/4 times they still refuse to give me pain medicine and say to just "follow up" with my neurologist. And then three weeks later I get a monstrous bill.

    This is why people self medicate. My neurologist has rolled her eyes at the ER's antics and told me flat out to self medicate and not go to the ER. She gives me a couple of different medicines to mix and match in order to knock me out so I can "sleep through it". Of course none of this is safe. What is safe is getting the correct medicine by IV when it is needed to stop the cycle of the pain. I can't sleep for weeks on end and "wait out" a flare up. But if the ER would just give me the correct medicine I could be back to work in a few days. But alas.

  34. The doctor thought I was exaggerating my symptoms (couldn't breath properly) and sent me home. 2 weeks later it turned out I had pleurisy.

  35. This makes me so effing disgusted 🤢 it is sickening. I hope for better visits in the future even though that might never be. But I really really wish that this even ever once happened. In Sweden it isn't any better, if you come in to the emergency room with a non life threatening illness or injury you are most likely going to be waiting for at least 4 hours, most days it's more like 6-7 hours, most often in the hallways, if you are lucky you get a room, that they might take away from you because they think someone else needs it more, before you get to meet a doctor. When the doctor gets to you they are with you for maybe 5 minutes, gives you some kind of prescription and sends you on your way.
    This happened both times I went to the emergency with my BF when he had bleeding ulcers and were throwing up blood all over the place 😔

  36. Hospitals are basically as bad as my chronic illnesses. I have a pet theory that my local one is slowly trying to kill me. Oh well, they do more good than bad,,, I think.

  37. I had surgery to remove a 15cm ovarian cyst. Yes, apparently that is possible. I was shocked too. I'm also diabetic and have many complex health issues. So because I'm diabetic they check my blood sugar every two hours after surgery. So I'm laying in bed at 5am, high on tramadol, morpheine, fentanyl and diclofenac and it's time for a finger prick. The nurse does it all silently even though I'm awake. She leaves without saying a word and comes back with biscuits and orange juice, puts them on my table and leaves without saying a word. Me, being high off of my tits and very sleepy, is quite honestly offended by this. My throat is sore and so I don't want to drink or eat anything that isn't soft.

    It takes me about 45 minutes to realise that I hadn't been given this as an early morning treat but because my blood sugar was low. And it must have been very low as I was given a cup of orange juice and three packets of biscuits. I genuinely could have died from that. No one would have noticed if I'd have fallen unconscious because it's 5am and I'm supposed to be sleeping anyway.

  38. Jessica's story just makes me want to punch the doctor. I have several chronic illnesses and one causing visual impairment. It's not cool. And doctors would be saving so many people's lives if they just did what they promised to do and to do no harm and treat their patient, regardless of their opinion.

    My horror story happened one night around 12pm. I was having lots of chronic pain that was keeping me up but the most prominent thing going on was this migraine. I have Pseudotumor cerebri, it's a condition caused by pressure on the brain which in turn causes migraines. I was in so much pain from that migraine that I began to pass out and my body was acting like I was having a stroke, which I am used to because it has happened in the past.. But it has to be treated with a lumbar puncture and medication. So my aunt phones the ambulance and here I am lying in bed unable to get up, and they are literally telling me to get up and walk downstairs and get into the ambulance. I can barely even speak let alone move myself out of bed. So eventually they just hoist me onto a gurney, take me downstairs into the ambulance. And as soon as I arrive there, they tell me to explain what happened… I explain and they say, "well are you stressed? Are you dealing with something?" My aunt points out that I have suffered with depression and anxiety in the past. To which they say, "you don't need to be here. Your neurologist says you have had mental issues in the past which coincide with your symptoms, so you just need to go home.. But we'd like to run some tests just to be sure." Still unable to speak properly and unable to move around, I said " just discharge me. I'm signing myself out." And I slowly made my way out of the hospital and went home to sleep it off. But I haven't been back to that hospital, and I will never go back to that one.

  39. It’s getting better on my end, especially since powered gloves are no longer legally allowed to use in my area (because they may contain wheat and or corn starch) but there are SO MANY DOCTORS who do not take Celiac Disease seriously. My dentist is stellar. Top notch.
    But many other doctors I have had in the past (I am in America btw) patronize or roll their eyes over me asking about the MILLION AND ONE items that are gonna be thrown into my body that may or may not contain gluten.
    Again, things are getting better and I appreciate it but banned powdered gloves in the office ain’t gonna ban the doctors who look at me as if I am a gluten free trender.

    …if it wasn’t for the gluten free trend 7 years ago, I wouldn’t have ever gotten diagnosed with celiac disease…just saying.

    Trending GFer for life and effing proud. 🙂

  40. Studies have shown that doctors tend to minimize women's pain and take men's symptoms more seriously. Men also get better pain management and quicker treatment than women.

  41. They gave me morphine when I had to go to emerge as I thought my appendix burst and I just about threw up….then they gave me Gravol of the IV type. That was fun; it was the first time I had no pain for the past 10 years.

  42. My dad actually found me doubled over in the kitchen…. The triage nurse at the hospital got me a bed and pain killers super fast when I said I have lupus. It was just a really enlarged ovarian cyst and thankfully not my appendix. My meds gave me kidney stones as a side effect 🙁

  43. Nurses and paramedics are angels and I will never, ever be able to thank them enough for the work they do. Doctors can go f*** themselves, collectively, as a group. They need to add "getting off your high horse" to the curriculum in medical school.

  44. I don’t really have a hospital horror story I can think of but when I was at a dentist appointment, back when I had a really hard time talking to strangers/authority figures , I was going to have my teeth drilled and I asked the nurse if I could have novocaine and laughing gas. Before I could explain that it was because my teeth are HIGHLY sensitive, and that only having novocaine or only having laughing gas meant I would feel EVERYTHING, she immediately snapped back “No. you don’t need it. You can only get laughing gas if you need it.” And stormed out of the room, which made me cry and subsequently forced me to sit in the chair with a low dose of novocaine (I need a high one if anything) and basically be tortured for an hour as the nurse rolled her eyes at my screams/tears

  45. Oh! I don’t have my own hospital horror story but I do have my friends! Okay so she was admitted under suicide watch back in middle school, (by cutting open her arms, important to the story) and the nurses a. Put an in needle into her arm without a tube or bag or anything so she was leaking blood and just left it there for like 10 minutes, all while she was frantically pressing the ‘help/nurse!’ Button and no one came, so my friend took it out carefully and grabbed a bandaid out of the drawer for it. Then b. They left a tray of scalpels and other sharp objects neck to to her the whole night. As if she, a suicide attempt victim who cut her self open, couldn’t try to use them on herself?? I don’t remember what happened but I think she might’ve gotten her dad or someone to remove the sharp objects from her room so she wouldn’t be tempted.

    Our hospital is in a small town and half the staff is entirely too incompetent to work there but they don’t have many options for staff.

  46. It is kind of shocking to me with your story that the hospital didn't have some plan for having a deaf patient. If you came in only speaking a foreign language they would get you a translator or call one and have them translate back and forth over the phone. Obviously over the phone sign language doesn't work, but how hard is writing stuff down? But then I've been to emergency rooms so its not THAT shocking. One of my stories: I have a serious chronic condition that effects my digestive system. It is also an illness that tends to lead to doctors googling it when I tell them, and because of it I take a number of medications and there are certain types of medications that I shouldn't take. My terrible hospital visit wasn't related to this long term illness, though. I was home alone and had an allergic reaction that caused my eyes to swell completely shut. It was incredibly painful and I completely couldn't see. Luckily, I keep a piece of paper with all of my medical information and my insurance cards in a pouch in my purse. I used Siri on my phone to call 911 since I couldn't see the screen. An ambulance came. They were nice and happy with my little piece of paper, but when I got to the hospital they put me in a wheelchair and just abandoned me. I couldn't see, so I couldn't ask anyone what was going on. I finally got triaged and the nurse just jerked me around. I gave him my paper and he started arguing with me about the drugs I had listed as having had a bad reaction to. There were only 4. He said they weren't allergies. I agreed with him, they weren't allergies, they were drugs I'd had a bad reaction to. One, for instance, caused a problem with my heart, didn't really want to repeat that. He said, "if you were going to die without that drug, would I give it to you, I think I would." What? But I can't see so I can't tell if anyone else is around that I could ask for help from. He ended up putting an allergy bracelet on me but not writing anything on it so everyone who interacted with me after that saw the bracelet and had to go check the computer (I didn't know the bracelet was blank until I was able to open my eyes much later). Thankfully when I finally saw a doctor he was able to get the swelling down and there wasn't any permanent damage. It's not my worse ER experience, but it was so infuriating. I wanted to make a complaint about that guy but I missed his name because I was in so much pain if he told it to me at all and I never saw him so that was kind of tough. I'm so happy I had that paper, though.

  47. My horror story is when I was getting my iv done before a surgery and the anesthesiologist made a mistake and drenched me in fluid and didn't do a damn thing about it, and the nurses had to clean me up when we finally got someone. Then(same day), another nurse came in to draw my blood and tied the rubber band around my arm and another nurse asked her for something so she got up and walked away without undoing the band, leaving my arm to lose circulation, for a couple minutes too. Thank god I didn't love fill feeling and that another nurse came to my rescue to take it off of me.

  48. My kidneys failed, I was literally carrying on until I was weeing blood and vomiting black bile! I went to my gp and they thought the blood pressure machine was broken because my blood pressure was 210/180! Everyone kept say I was winging when I kept going to the gp because I was 26 years! Shocking! I was in a and e and had a catheter put in and the junior doctors were laughing and talking to the other junior doctor while behind my curtains!

  49. These stories are exactly why I want to become a patient advocate and a medical interpreter for the deaf. I work in research and so many times I witness very eager Doctors try to consent patients into research studies without fully explaining the consent form and procedures.

  50. My doctor who told me I had fluctuating hearing loss whispered… and this was during a really bad wave, and I had to have my mom tell me everythingwhen we left

  51. I have kidney disease. i went into the hospital thinking i was constipated or something and was told i had a kidney stone. i was shocked. i'd had them before but never that painful and never with vomiting… well, they got the pain down to about a 3 then sent me home. next day i couldn't eat or drink and had to go back in. they said i'd have to be discharged again because they didn't have a urologist on call. luckily the attending doctor knew me and immediately had me taken to a room and started running every test on earth and found a reason to admit me… yes, a kidney patient with a kidney infection and kidney stone could not be admitted for those purposes… they admitted me for LOW CALCIUM! HOW INSANE IS THAT?! i fully sympathize Jessica. i ended up in the hospital for 4 days and out of work for another week after that and was discharged the first night!

  52. Paramedics are seriously awesome! Jessica was right when she said they are angels. I've had to ride in ambulances a few times in the past (chronic illness sucks), and the paramedics are always absolutely incredible.
    I do really wish medical personnel would be more accommodating to people who use ASL. I'm not Deaf or Hard-of-Hearing in any way, but I do go for very long periods of time where I am completely mute, and that obviously makes it very difficult for me to communicate with the doctors and nurses. It drives me crazy when I get asked questions and can't answer because they won't give me an ASL interpreter. I do keep a notes app open on my phone so that I can type what I wanna say, but sometimes I don't have the energy to type and it would be easier to sign. Plus, signing is a ton faster than typing. If someone who only spoke Spanish came into the ER and couldn't understand the doctor, an interpreter would be called. People who use ASL should be treated the same way. It is a basic human right to be able to communicate and understand.

  53. I've had so many bad experinces that I don't know where to start. And I live in Sweden where we are supposed to have good healthcare.

  54. My worst pain was caused by a dentist's mistake. I ended up with an infection through half my face. It swelled so much my eye wouldn't open. I ended up on IV antibiotics. Then morphine, which didn't touch the pain. Then dalaudid, which didn't stop the pain. Then I was maxed out on dalaudid. This finally made the pain manageable. Never saw that dentist again. Obviously.

  55. My pain threshold is fairly high as well. I once broke my wrist in my sleep and just went back to bed. I got up in the morning and my arm was so swollen and numb that I couldn’t move it. I just kinda shrugged it off and told my parents.

  56. My friend had kidney "pebbles" as the doctor said last year. She was in extreme pain, vomiting, not eating, etc. Very similar symptoms except for the bleeding part. She also has severe anxiety and was going out of consciousness on our drive to the ER and I had to speak for her at some points until she calmed down/they gave her meds. The doctors were good but the nurse was being a real jerk about her panic attack! :/

  57. Lipreading may not be easier when someone is nice to you, but in my experience it's certainly more motivation to try 😛

  58. i have cystic fibrosis and was told to stop exagerating my breathing (i couldnt breathe was gasping like a fish…lips and nails blue….pulse/ox level at 75) and to just breathe normally by the er nurse…doc comes in sees nails and medical history and yells at nurse and puts me on oxygen…fast forward to a week later…i am still in icu on ventilattion being treated for pneumonia present in both lungs. wasnt released for additional two weeks. never saw the nurse again

  59. I was assisting mum in a clinic recently and had a funny moment when the doctor dismissed mum's comments about hearing as "oh you seem to be hearing me fine" and then turned away to write while still talking to her. Mum looked at me for interpretation and of course I can't hear either if they're facing away, so we were just giggling together at this doctor until they noticed 🙂

  60. My mum's a Dr and whenever she has a patient with hearing difficulties she'll write everything down for them so they can effectively communicate with her. It's really not that hard.

  61. I don’t know much about what I’m going to do when I’m older because I’m still a kid, but I know one thing for sure, and it’s that I will learn sign language so that no matter what I do I can always accommodate for deaf people. I never would have wanted to learn sign language if I hadn’t come across you’re channel.

  62. This is why the NHS sucks ass.
    Any excuse to cut corners and not spend money on an ambulance, even when people need it.

  63. One of my least favorite things about hospitals: Having to describe all the symptoms etc. to 6 different people.

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