With the first draft of the book given to the publisher, it’s time to get this blog back on the regular track.
Canary Wharf has a skating rink at the moment and my crewmate and I were sent there to attend to a ‘fall, head injury’.
“Excellent”, we thought, “a nice simple job – nothing complicated”.
We were met by a worried looking ice rink worker who wobbled across the pavement on his skates to meet us.
“We wouldn’t normally bother you guys, but we think it might be serious”.
Grabbing my bags I was led to a woman sitting in the changing area with two youngsters, both of which were looking a little concerned.
“Hello there. I’m the ambulance, what seems to be the problem”, I normally start with a version of this as a conversational opening gambit.
The patient replied, “Well, I had a bit of a fall….”, she paused, “I…”, she paused again, “Head…hit…migraine…”.
She seemed to be having trouble finding the right words to use. I quickly examined her, and was happy that she hadn’t hurt her neck and the small lump on the back of her head didn’t look serious either. So why was she acting so strangely?
“I get migraines”, she told me, “I…lose…um…er…um…words, and I…eyes…eyes…go blind”.
This is a pretty rare presentation of migraines, but not unheard of.
We got her into the back of the ambulance and all my examinations there were normal. She was complaining of ‘losing her words’ (expressive dysphasia) and of going blind in her right eye. She didn’t seem too upset by this and had already taken her normal migraine medication, although I’m not sure on how Paracetamol and Metoclopramide would help with these symptoms as I’m not an expert on migraine treatment although I know that Triptans can sometimes be used.
Her symptoms started to get worse, she couldn’t find any of the words that she wanted to use, and so I needed to get a more thorough history from the two youngsters. They were her nephews and she had been treating them to a trip down to London. Although young, they were both very mature and helpful and after some prompting from the patient (“Laptop…look…laptop”) we found a patient information card in her purse. The card let us know that all the symptoms that she was experiencing were indeed part of the presentation of her migraine.
It was a short trip to the hospital, during which she started to make a slight recovery and we left her in the capable hands of the A&E nurses. Unfortunately for the patient, the hospital was extremely busy, so I’m guessing that she had to wait a little while for any treatment.
The three of them had come from Surrey, so they didn’t know the area well, although we were able to give them directions home from the hospital, we had chosen this hospital over another slightly closer one so that it would be easier for them to get home after any treatment.
A day out into London turning into a trip to the hospital – it happens more often than you would think.