If you want to survive the food in a hospital, especially if you are a cardiac and diabetic patient, you must bring a good hot sauce from home. I did and it gave me flavor where there was only bland notions of taste. Getting friends to bring you a good cup of coffee doesn’t hurt either.
I was in the hospital for a week with a foot infection which led to the amputation of my little toe and the attached bone. The nurses were wonderful and caring people who for the most part, knew what they were doing. The relationship between doctors and nurses was at times adversarial. Toward the end of my stay, the last day, a young doctor was determined to give me one more round of IV antibiotics. But, the nurse had already taken out the IV in my arm because it was backed up with blood. My other arm was still swollen and sore from another IV. I said no more to the nurse. The young doctor told the nurse to just stick me and she lied saying I had said it was fine. I won and was released by noon.
There is an old expression that hospitals can make you sicker. If they don’t make you sicker, they can scare you to death. My first morning a doctor on my medicine team, not to be confused with my foot team, comes in and sits down on a chair near my bed.
“Mr. Honeyman, we have some bad news for you. On your chest x-ray that we did when you arrived in the hospital last night we see a large growth on your right lung. We understand that you were a smoker. We are going to do a more comprehensive set of x-rays and see about next steps which could include a biopsy to see if this growth is benign or malignant! But, you don’t have to worry about this yet. Just keep it in the back of your mind.” Later in the day the same doctor came back and told me the more comprehensive x-rays showed no growth on my right lung. “It must have been a shadow or maybe I had a cell phone in my pocket,” he says. Five or so hours with the fear of lung cancer!
My kidneys presented another challenge. I came into the hospital with recent blood work showing that I had renal failure or kidney disease. An ultra sound of my kidneys came upnegative, my kidneys looked fine. All of this was prior to my hospital arrival. The first bloodwork, which they do religiously very early every morning, once again showed kidney problems.We got rid of metformin, an oral medication for diabetes known to cause kidney problems and
got rid of bactrim, an oral antibiotic. Within a few days, the blood work had my kidneys functioning at a normal level. So, without asking a lot of questions and advocating for myself, the hospital experience can be dangerous to your health.
The hospital gives you a receipt with each meal, a listing of the items requested and received or at least requested because each meal usually came with one item missing. But, I always had my hot sauce to add flavor and zest to m otherwise bland, hospital stay.