Nurse ignores pain reports in patient with hematoma...

by Ron
(Northport, Florida)

I recently had scrotal hernia surgery with mesh implant. On day 2 after the surgery I felt something was wrong. I contacted the doctor and told him the pain was increasing, along with bruising and swelling. On day 4 I called the doc's office and spoke with the nurse. I told her the symptoms I had of increased pain and swelling, more bruising, and black and blue in the area of surgery and left side up to my armpit.

I was told to continue with ice packs and taking ibuprofen. On day 6 I still was not better so I called the office again and told the nurse the pain was very bad, the bruising was significant, and the area was bigger than before surgery. I said the pain was unbearable and was told the doctor won't approve any pain meds and that I should take the ibuprofen. When I said it wasn't working and suggested I go to the ER she rudely said, "Do what you got to do."

On day 8 I couldn't take the pain anymore so I went to the ER and was diagnosed with a huge hematoma. My question is, are the doctor and nurse negligent in not listening to my complaints, and if earlier treatment would have lessened the hematoma? Any info would be very helpful, thanks.

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ANSWER for "Nurse ignores pain reports in patient with hematoma...":

Ron (Northport, Florida):

It's obvious you suffered great pain and discomfort. Whether or not your extended pain and discomfort is a result of medical negligence is difficult to know without a review of your medical records. Certainly the nurse who told you to "Do what you gotta do" was very unprofessional. But to be unprofessional alone is not sufficient to rise to the level of medical negligence. Taken with other factors though, the nurse's remarks may get close.

Determining medical negligence is challenging. Some doctors are just not appropriately communicative. Others employ staff who are incapable of patient empathy. While you mentioned your frustration at not being given another prescription for narcotic pain medication, you failed to mention why you didn't just make an appointment to see the doctor.

While I'm not implying you contributed to your additional pain and discomfort, there is a legitimate question as to why you were more concerned about getting additional narcotic pain medication than with making another appointment to see the doctor. If you had, the doctor may have been able to take corrective action, and in so doing, stopped the hematoma from occurring.

The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from an attorney licensed in your state. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here, or call (888) 647-2490.

Best of luck,

Judge Calisi

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