Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Doctor? I Wonder...

MALPRACTICE - failure of a professional person, as a physician or lawyer, to render proper services through reprehensible ignorance or negligence or through criminal intent, especially when injury or loss follows.

Brooke, the daughter of one of my best friends, recently switched from having a G-tube to having a GJ-tube. For several months, Brooke had been experiencing a great deal of pain whenever she was fed. The doctors did a lot of testing but couldn't come up with a reason for the pain. Their solution was to switch to the GJ-tube.

It sounded like an ok idea, and Brooke does have much less pain using it over the G-tube. But, it comes with a major problem - it gets clogged a LOT. And unlike with a G-tube, a parent or caregiver can't change it. Changing the GJ-rube requires a trip to the hospital or medical office for a radiologist to change it and make sure it is positioned correctly.

Seeing as the tube gets clogged almost weekly, that is a huge headache, and not to mention, lots of time off from work for Brooke's Mom (unpaid time off which for a single mom is devastating.) But if it makes life better for Brooke, her mom is all for it.

So what's the problem? Well, this past Sunday, the tube became clogged again. But a call to the GI doc provided bad news. He and the radiologist were not going to come in on Sunday to change the tube, and Brooke would just have to wait until Monday. But since ALL Brooke's nutrition and fluids are given via that tube, that meant she would quickly become dehydrated or Brooke's mom would have to use the G-tube part and cause Brooke to experience the pain again.

To say this infuriated Brooke's Mom and the rest of us who know and love this lovely little family would be an understatement. If a doctor chooses to treat children with significant needs, and further if that doctor is the one who recommended the GJ-tube, then his job is 24/7. If he wants time off, he makes arrangements for other doctors to back him up. I still find it almost incomprehensible that this happened.

We parents of children with significant medical needs must rely on the medical community to keep our children alive and healthy. So much is beyond our control, and that is a horrible feeling just knowing that we can't make it better.

I, for one, consider this malpractice...just saying....


Just the Tip said...

oh my gosh! That is awful. I can't believe they would just say, 'oh sorry, she can just wait until tomorrow to eat!'
Ugh. Hopefully it's the the GI dr. we are seeing lol because I really like her, and she just did Morgan's endoscopy this morning.

I think it's time for a 2nd opinion. And massive amounts of complaints. How can their not be a single radiologist/gi dr. who could do it, the hospital is loaded with dr's!

MMC said...

"I, for one, consider this malpractice...just saying...."

I, for one, agree.