always go to pot don't they!
All day yesterday I was looking forward to an evening of blogging as I haven't been able to do much of it this week having gone back to work. Then I got a phone call from my brother to say Dad wasn't well and he was really worried about him, though it wasn't life threatening. I said I'll be there are soon as I finish work at three.
Dad had phoned an ambulance at 7 a.m. on Thursday to take him to A&E because he couldn't stand the pain from his arthritic hip and knee. The doctors and nurses had been wonderful with him giving him Tramadol to ease the pain and one 'angel' (as my Dad described her) had even managed to get him down to an orthopaedic clinic to see his consultant before his scheduled appointment on the 10th October! Now that's a true nursing angel! Anyway, after the pain had eased he was quite happy to go home.
He took two Tramadol at bedtime and had the best night's sleep he's had for months waking up yesterday refreshed and ready for anything. The hospital had arranged for the district nurse to visit to keep a check on his blood sugar levels (he's non-insulin dependent) and advise him on pain relief for his arthritis. The nurse duly arrived after Dad had his shower and suggested he take a Tramadol along with the Paracetamol he'd already taken for his pain. Within 15 minutes of the nurse leaving Dad said he felt really ill, luckily my brother arrived to check that he was OK and found him swaying, dizzy and incohorent! Brother phone the doctor who refused to come out - no change there then - don't get me started, and then the nurse who came around straight away. Apparently Dad's blood sugar levels were way too low so brother made Dad some lunch and they got him to eat it all. By the time I got there at 3.20 p.m. Dad said he was feeling better but he didn't look it.
The nurse came by again expecting Dad's blood sugar to be up but it had dropped even more, I made him something to eat but that didn't make any difference either. The nurse decided he needed a visit from the doctor so rang to ask for a home visit. She said if the doctor didn't come we had good cause for complaint. At 5 p.m. the doctor rang to ask how he was - he wasn't getting any better - and said she'd order an ambulance and send him to hospital. I asked why she wasn't coming out to see him, she said there really wasn't anything she could do except send him in hospital. I told her he didn't want to go into hospital and I wanted her to see him before she assessed he should be in hospital or was she refusing to visit him.
"Oh, no, I'm not refusing but I don't think there's anything I would be able to do" she said.
"I want you to come" I said "and in the meantime I'll keep checking his blood sugar level and if he gets any worse I'll phone an ambulance myself".
"Alright, but it will be a couple of hours because we have to finish surgery first" was her reply. It was a miracle she'd agreed to come out to see him so I didn't argue.
At 6pm Dad was feeling very unwell and when I asked if he wanted to wait for the doctor he said he wanted to go into hospital - so that's what we did. Once again the doctors and nurses at A&E were fantastic with him giving him sweet drinks, chocolate and IV glucose to get his blood sugars up, checking his blood, urine and a chest xray to make sure he had no infection. Then they had to send him up to the medical emergency ward for the registrar to decide whether to send him home or admit him. We were still there at 11 p.m. waiting to see the doctor so after a word with the nurse it was decided Dad would be better off spending the night there as he was really tired and nobody knew what time the doctor would get to see him, so brother and I left him there sleeping.
Hopefully he will be home today, they're going to check his blood sugar levels after he's had lunch and if they're OK he can leave. The puzzling thing was why his blood sugar kept dropping even after eating. The only thing different he'd done was take Tramadol - does anyone know if Morphine can make your blood sugar go down?
Dad's home and feeling much better. The doctors have no idea why his blood sugar was up and down like a bride's nightie. Dad takes Gliclazide and Metformin for his diabetes - the doctors have told him not to take the Gliclazide any more, so we don't think it was anything to do with the Tramadol, but to be on the safe side Dad is only going to take Tramadol at night when he's off to bed.