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  1. #51
    Toby Gymshorts's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pérou Flaquettes View Post
    Ah, I've just asked my better half and she says that her tea has very little caffeine in it and that decaf tea is not very tasty.
    Decaf Yorkshire Tea is absolutely fine.

  2. #52
    Lang Spoon's Avatar
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    I think vhi/Avila private insurance is more like the French but doesn’t cover everything. You might get reimbursement of half(?- I don’t have it though my girlfriend does and still has to pay a lot for physios/consultant visits, also you don’t want any pre existing conditions before signing up) yr GP costs or whatever, and more importantly can skip the queue for the same consultants I might be waiting for on public waiting lists. If you are poor enough to qualify by statute or write insistent letters to your Tammany Hall style Stroke TD you can get a medical card that will cover GP/hospital visits etc.

    Also diabetes type 1/Tb (and direct complications) etc are treated fer free.
    Last edited by Lang Spoon; 05-12-2018 at 22:19.

  3. #53
    Lang Spoon's Avatar
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    Charges for GP seem to vary by area, probably cheaper in the countryside but then the Gp probably is worse and has gimcrack equipment/can’t be arsed keeping up to date with Teh Science. Doubt any are under 50 euro per visit in Dublin. Think mine is 60 per visit, 45 for bloods.

  4. #54
    I had just got home yesterday past 5pm when I felt a searing pain both in the lower back and groin area (I had felt a dull pain there for a few days, eg when urinating, but didn’t think much of it and I’ve been very busy since last Friday and away for most of the weekend so no time to go to see a GP, plus seeing one atm in the UK can be a problem, certainly with my surgery, unless it’s urgent, which wasn’t my case. It was a minor pain, I thought it was a dicky stomach or something minor, I took Paracetamol. My wife, a pharmacist, sussed out that it wasn’t that minor and urged me to see a GP on Monday but I ignored her advice hoping that it would pass).

    Fucking Men. What are we like? Take care of yourself you big eejit.

  5. #55
    Pérou Flaquettes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Toby Gymshorts View Post
    Decaf Yorkshire Tea is absolutely fine.
    OK, I'll try then. But I leave all tea matters to my wife, she seems to swear by Tea Pigs and other less posh brands.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lang Spoon View Post
    I think vhi/Avila private insurance is more like the French but doesn’t cover everything. You might get reimbursement of half(?- I don’t have it though my girlfriend does and still has to pay a lot for physios/consultant visits, also you don’t want any pre existing conditions before signing up) yr GP costs or whatever, and more importantly can skip the queue for the same consultants I might be waiting for on public waiting lists. If you are poor enough to qualify by statute or write insistent letters to your Tammany Hall style Stroke TD you can get a medical card that will cover GP/hospital visits etc.

    Also diabetes type 1/Tb (and direct complications) etc are treated fer free.
    Quote Originally Posted by Lang Spoon View Post
    Charges for GP seem to vary by area, probably cheaper in the countryside but then the Gp probably is worse and has gimcrack equipment/can’t be arsed keeping up to date with Teh Science. Doubt any are under 50 euro per visit in Dublin. Think mine is 60 per visit, 45 for bloods.
    OK thanks. But does everyone pay that GP fee, even poor people with no health insurance, how does it work? (in a nutshell).

  6. #56
    Lang Spoon's Avatar
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    Nope you get a medical card that waives charges if considered Poor Poor. Some medical cards are GP only, some cover everything. It’s like a selective NHS if you get a medical card. Having a Hard Working Elected representative can help getting the card. This is partly how the worst pork barrel clientelist politicians get re-elected. Most folk have to pay for their kids when they get sick for example. Whcin again seems horrible.
    Last edited by Lang Spoon; 05-12-2018 at 23:16.

  7. #57
    Pérou Flaquettes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Awesome Berbaslug!!! View Post
    I had just got home yesterday past 5pm when I felt a searing pain both in the lower back and groin area (I had felt a dull pain there for a few days, eg when urinating, but didn’t think much of it and I’ve been very busy since last Friday and away for most of the weekend so no time to go to see a GP, plus seeing one atm in the UK can be a problem, certainly with my surgery, unless it’s urgent, which wasn’t my case. It was a minor pain, I thought it was a dicky stomach or something minor, I took Paracetamol. My wife, a pharmacist, sussed out that it wasn’t that minor and urged me to see a GP on Monday but I ignored her advice hoping that it would pass).

    Fucking Men. What are we like? Take care of yourself you big eejit.
    You big Jessie, you don't go to see your GP every time you feel a pain somewhere, do you?

    Yeah I know, I should have listened to her but you know what, the NHS surgery system is broken in many places, you can't even see a GP on the day unless you convince them that its' mega urgent (there's a triage now, mine do it by phone via the reception and a GP may call you at the end of the day to see when they can see you, it's really gone downhill with the Tories) you may have to wait a whole week.

    But let say that I phoned on Monday morning for my dull pain (it was only a dull pain at that stage) and managed to get a slot for the day after. So, I'd have seen a GP on Tuesday, (s)he'd have taken blood & urine samples, sent them to a lab so that means another 5 or 6 working days at least to get the results (so, Monday 10th Dec.), he'd then have referred me to see a consultant (God knows how long that would have taken to see one...) etc. And I'm not even sure the GP would have prescribed me a strong painkiller as they are reluctant to do that now if your pain is minor.

    As it were, it was unintentional but I was better off "waiting" for sthg to happen, I did suffer a lot (though apart from the 1st hour, it was just about bearable when plied with the Tramadol, the morphine and the other painkillers) but all the blood & urine tests and CT scan were done and analysed within 90 minutes at the hospital, I was seen by experts in their field and they were able to discharge me there and then.

  8. #58
    jwdd27's Avatar
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    If you sweet talk (or just talk nicely) to the receptionists at the GP you can find out the best way to get an on the day appointment. With me you have to doorstep them at 8am when they unlock the door (my doctors is 50 yards away so that's no hassle). My mother goes online at 9pm the night before, which is when they free up the next day's slots.
    They'll usually tell you the best way if you're not a regular surgery-botherer, in which case it's "telephone us after 8 in the morning"

  9. #59
    You big Jessie, you don't go to see your GP every time you feel a pain somewhere, do you/

    hah, actually yes. I take super strong immunosuppresants. Things can get out of hand very quickly.

    You have a history of kidney stones though. I bet you'll go next time, chaotic surgery or not, and you'll be rolling around like Neymar instead of being stoic.

  10. #60
    Patrick Thistle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Toby Gymshorts View Post
    Decaf Yorkshire Tea is absolutely fine.
    M&S decaf tea is quite palatable. It's also fair trade.

    Hope you recover quickly, Perou.

    Also, for reference, always answer the pain question with how bad it has been not how bad it is now.

  11. #61
    Lang Spoon's Avatar
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    That’s me on the fasting now. Fuck sake I’d kill for a battered sausage.

  12. #62
    Sam's Avatar
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    Bloody hell, get well soon PF.

    After hearing this can be a hazard in your 50s, I'm considering lowering the age of my suicide pact with my girlfriend by a couple of decades.

  13. #63
    Femme Folle's Avatar
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    PF, you have a lot in common with my cat, as it happens, so I'll tell you the secret to his being stone-free for over seven years--a grain free diet. Let me know if you'd like to eat what he eats and I'll give you the name of it.

    Glad you're better now.

    Was that highly skilled nurse called a Nurse Practitioner? We have those here and I think they know almost as much as doctors do.

  14. #64

    The mind works better at 3mph....
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    Quote Originally Posted by Femme Folle View Post
    PF, you have a lot in common with my cat, as it happens, so I'll tell you the secret to his being stone-free for over seven years--a grain free diet. Let me know if you'd like to eat what he eats and I'll give you the name of it.

    Glad you're better now.

    Was that highly skilled nurse called a Nurse Practitioner? We have those here and I think they know almost as much as doctors do.
    Likely an advanced one or ANP

  15. #65
    Pérou Flaquettes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lang Spoon View Post
    Nope you get a medical card that waives charges if considered Poor Poor. Some medical cards are GP only, some cover everything. It’s like a selective NHS if you get a medical card. Having a Hard Working Elected representative can help getting the card. This is partly how the worst pork barrel clientelist politicians get re-elected. Most folk have to pay for their kids when they get sick for example. Whcin again seems horrible.
    OK, thanks for that.

    Quote Originally Posted by jwdd27 View Post
    If you sweet talk (or just talk nicely) to the receptionists at the GP you can find out the best way to get an on the day appointment. With me you have to doorstep them at 8am when they unlock the door (my doctors is 50 yards away so that's no hassle). My mother goes online at 9pm the night before, which is when they free up the next day's slots.
    They'll usually tell you the best way if you're not a regular surgery-botherer, in which case it's "telephone us after 8 in the morning"
    I'll try, thanks for the tips. But it's tough I think with our surgery according to my wife anyway, she's been experiencing health problems since 2015 - menopause is not going smoothly at all, a bit better now but only because she's self-medicating and has found ways to circumvent the system - and has had to deal with them in the last 3 yrs and well, things have changed shall we say, they used to be good to deal with but not anymore. They can't cope basically so their triage is tough.

  16. #66
    Pérou Flaquettes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sam View Post
    Bloody hell, get well soon PF.

    After hearing this can be a hazard in your 50s, I'm considering lowering the age of my suicide pact with my girlfriend by a couple of decades.
    Thanks, I'm fine, no pain at all after that evening from hell.

    Sorry Sam but young 'uns are at risk too (from https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/kidney-stones/):

    Kidney stones can develop in one or both kidneys and most often affect people aged 30 to 60.

    Women are less at risk but it’s really not worth a sex change:

    They're quite common, with around three in 20 men and up to two in 20 women developing them at some stage of their lives.


    Quote Originally Posted by Femme Folle View Post
    Glad you're better now.
    Thanks, back to normal.

    Quote Originally Posted by Femme Folle View Post
    I'll tell you the secret to his being stone-free for over seven years--a grain free diet.
    There's certainly more than a grain of truth in that.

  17. #67
    Pérou Flaquettes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Awesome Berbaslug!!! View Post
    You big Jessie, you don't go to see your GP every time you feel a pain somewhere, do you/

    hah, actually yes. I take super strong immunosuppresants. Things can get out of hand very quickly.

    You have a history of kidney stones though. I bet you'll go next time, chaotic surgery or not, and you'll be rolling around like Neymar instead of being stoic.
    Well, I only had kidney stones once before (2002), so not sure if that constitutes a history, it didn’t in my mind anyway. It does now as it’s the second time so I’ll be more vigilant.

    I wasn’t stoic at all, I tried to be very proactive but it wasn’t easy, as I explained in my long post I was on my own, the 111 operator refused to send an ambulance etc. I tried to minimise the pain by taking strong painkillers as soon as I could contact my wife (who told me what to take in our in-house pharmacy, thankfully we are well provided for – Tramadol is not ideal but that’s the best we have atm at home, there are risks attached obvs. but it did the job) but even the best painkiller take a good while to work, up to an hour really, they need to fully get into your bloodstream etc. so what was I supposed to do? I could barely move for most of the first hour (on and off pain, from maybe 2/10 to 9/10 on the NHS scale). Thankfully, the pain decreased progressively thanks to the painkillers and I could function OK after that (meaning I could walk and talk, while still being in some pain of course, on and off).

    I’ve obviously given some thought about what to do next time and how to go about it as it’s likely to reoccur. I’m not sure I’ll contact my surgery at all TBH. However, I’ll know how to recognise the telltale signs so I’ll be better prepared. I don’t know what it’s like in Ireland or in other countries but in England you have to make choices and have strategies in place, healthcare has deteriorated and you have to rely on yourself more than elsewhere in Western Europe.

    That’s what my wife does, she's had health problems since 2015 (menopause is very complicated) and had a serious disease about 15 yrs ago (Graves' Disease) and has been really let down by the NHS system this time (not 15 yrs ago), as I mentioned here, so she’s taken steps to self-medicate and partly sort out her problems herself. I've done the same thing too but for minor stuff (physio - back, shoulders) in comparison to hers, I resorted to consult privately as I was fed up of having to wait months to see a consultant. I’m pretty new to this health business, I’m very rarely ill, never go to my surgery (apart from the odd routine check every 2 yrs) and have only been to a UK hospital twice in 26 yrs, for the same thing (kidney stones).

    The thing is that I eventually passed the stone last night, on my own. The hospital did the checks & tests and established what it was, and that’s great and reassuring but that’s all, they didn’t administer anything magic liquid that flushed out the bastard. They could tell from the CT scan that a 5 mm stone had been wedged in there somewhere (obviously it wasn’t there anymore as it didn’t show on their CT imaging but they could see a shape, they could see the marks the bastard had left as it scraped the walls (?) of my urinary tracts and tubes, where it’d done damage I suppose, that’s how they established it was 5 mm in diameter) but they couldn’t have forced it out. The only way they can do that is through surgery or ultrasound and the stone needs to be still there obvs. and be minimum 6-7 mm big.

    Being better prepared means to have strong painkillers to hand at all times for instance, so I’ll now try to carry some with me at all times. But I may decide to stay at home and pass the stone there. Waiting over 4 hours in that general waiting room was no fun believe me, I might as well have waited at home in my bed (the second bout of waiting, about 1h30 mns, once I’d done all the tests was much better as I was given a private room and a bed but the first waiting phase, about 4h15, was not great).

    I’m not sure what good it would do to actually go to my surgery, wait there, wait a week for the blood results & urine results (there was blood in mine – the naked eye couldn’t see it though) etc.
    Yes, the surgery write a letter for the hospital but that’s it. I thought that that referral letter letter would give priority (I explained why in my post) but nope. I really don’t understand how they do their triage at the hospital, I suspect the triage nurse's decisions are based on this pain assessment mark out of 10. I was obviously in pain but plenty of people who were not (you could tell, they were playing on their phone, laughing, chatting etc.) were admitted way before me, maybe they just blagged it and gave super high pain marks.

    So I might have well have turned up at the hospital without contacting my surgery, and I would have been seen anyway just in the same way, and probably quicker if I'd exaggerated the pain.
    I think that once you know how to recognise the signs, and if you’re certain that it’s a kidney stone, and if you’re medically prepared (strong painkillers), you might as well stay at home and try to pass the stone in the comfort of your home instead of going down the hospital route. Unless you are in screaming pain and are certain that you’ll be seen straight away at the local hospital, like you would if you had a stroke for instance and are whisked off to the Emergency unit, but I wasn’t in that sort of pain as I explained (I was the 1st time round in 2002), so I had to join the long queue or A & E people.

    I apologise in advance if you’re eating but this is what it looks like in practice (this one would need operating on, or ultrasound, I think):


    Kidney stones form in your kidneys. As stones move into your ureters — the thin tubes that allow urine to pass from your kidneys to your bladder — signs and symptoms can result. Signs and symptoms of kidney stones can include severe pain, nausea, vomiting, fever, chills and blood in your urine.

  18. #68
    I think that once you know how to recognise the signs, and if you’re certain that it’s a kidney stone, and if you’re medically prepared (strong painkillers), you might as well stay at home and try to pass the stone in the comfort of your home instead of going down the hospital route. Unless you are in screaming pain and are certain that you’ll be seen straight away at the local hospital, like you would if you had a stroke for instance and are whisked off to the Emergency unit, but I wasn’t in that sort of pain as I explained (I was the 1st time round in 2002), so I had to join the long queue or A & E people.

    If you want to be seen quickly in a hospital, tell them that the side of your face doesn't work. My feet barely touched the ground, and they were throwing coal into the stroke machine, but there are a couple of quick physical tests than enable them to distinguish bells palsy from a stroke. You have a well thought through plan anyway. Still though best give the neymar quintuple roll a practice, just so it's stored in the muscle memory.

  19. #69
    Pérou Flaquettes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Patrick Thistle View Post
    M&S decaf tea is quite palatable. It's also fair trade.

    Hope you recover quickly, Perou.

    Also, for reference, always answer the pain question with how bad it has been not how bad it is now.
    Thanks for the tip, they should really make that clear when they ask you that Q.

    Quote Originally Posted by The Awesome Berbaslug!!! View Post
    I think that once you know how to recognise the signs, and if you’re certain that it’s a kidney stone, and if you’re medically prepared (strong painkillers), you might as well stay at home and try to pass the stone in the comfort of your home instead of going down the hospital route. Unless you are in screaming pain and are certain that you’ll be seen straight away at the local hospital, like you would if you had a stroke for instance and are whisked off to the Emergency unit, but I wasn’t in that sort of pain as I explained (I was the 1st time round in 2002), so I had to join the long queue or A & E people.

    If you want to be seen quickly in a hospital, tell them that the side of your face doesn't work. My feet barely touched the ground, and they were throwing coal into the stroke machine, but there are a couple of quick physical tests than enable them to distinguish bells palsy from a stroke. You have a well thought through plan anyway. Still though best give the neymar quintuple roll a practice, just so it's stored in the muscle memory.
    I certainly will exaggerate my pain, seems to be the only way to be seen more quickly (if indeed I am in real pain, I wouldn't do it just to jump the queue).

  20. #70
    Walt Flanagans Dog's Avatar
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    Meanwhile away from bladders and Brexit, the Government is making bold decisions - announcing a ban on fax machines in the NHS.

    I don't work in the NHS but in my workplace we still use at least one fax machine - some payments require confirmation by fax - and we still occasionally get spam/marketing by fax, so there must still be a few around.

  21. #71
    In Ireland they are used to allow a doctor send a prescription to a pharmacy. The other odd thing about this set up is that a lot of it operates using dot matrix printers, which at this point has to be the 21st century equivalent of a system involving quills and parchments and magical seals.

  22. #72
    Can someone please explain to me why staff make dying elderly patients “nil by mouth”? I’ve heard several friends describe how distressed their parents were, crying for water in their final days, and Harry Leslie Smith’s son described the same. If I get to 90 and am on the way out, I don’t want to spend my last days under bright lights with a raging thirst.

    I’m sure it can’t be the Liverpool Pathway thing of hastening their departure, and wasn’t that supposed to be humane and painless? Thirst is distressing. Sorry but this is really bothering me and makes no sense at all.

  23. #73
    Patrick Thistle's Avatar
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    If you lose swallowing function you drown if you drink water. But there are ways to alleviate dry mouth.

    Don't die in hospital is my main advice. And I work in one.

  24. #74
    Thanks, PT. I don’t think these people had lost that function but that’s interesting. According to his son, HLS was allowed a beer after several days nil by mouth. And surely you could give water with a sponge or something? Dunno. My instinct would be to give the person water, but I will keep in mind the drowning thing.

  25. #75
    Patrick Thistle's Avatar
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    It's quite possibly stupidity and negligence.

    Mrs Thistle was on an enhanced recovery pathway where they carb load you up and try to get you eating asap afterwards because energy aids recovery (well, duh!). But both her and the woman operated on after her still had the NBM signs up the day after the operation and the domestics almost didn't give them any food except Mrs Thistle knew her recovery pathway and said they both needed feeding. You only need a nurse to stick a sign up and forget to take it down and the next nurse on shift to be a bit dopey and you have problems.

    The LCP was a great pathway, when it was used by properly trained nursing teams who understood what they were doing and why they were doing it. What went wrong was when it was exported to untrained teams who slavishly followed the pathway without really understanding it. (And also using it on people without agreement/ consent.)

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