Immediate care response is necessary if a person encounters an illness or injury that needs medical attention. Calling 911 or the emergency number will hasten the help process by having the emergency team come to the location. That is why the ER or the hospitals’ emergency department has been a go-to for patients seeking emergency treatment for acute illness or injury. This particular department will be able to make a rapid initial assessment and help stabilize the patient before proceeding to the diagnosis and treatment. The doctors assigned in this area are well equipped to handle patients who need immediate care.
When to Go to the ER
Urgent medical care is provided in the emergency room of a hospital. This is why the ER is usually the busiest part of a healthcare institution. You don’t need a doctor’s appointment to go there. However, you have to expect that a lot of patients are queuing pending on the severity of their health condition.
The most serious medical problems are usually treated first. Patients from road accidents are mostly dealt with in the ER. If you feel the need to go there for assessment of your condition or another person needs medical attention, here are some of the situations that necessitate your presence at the ER:
Chest pain and difficulty in breathing, wheezing, shortness of breathing including after taking certain medications.
Fainting or dizziness especially when you have a pre-existing medical condition.
Changes in vision after a head trauma or for those or diagnosed with diabetes.
Confusion or changes in the mental function like disorientation and unexplained drowsiness.
Sudden numbness or weakness.
Displaced or open wound fractures including sudden severe pain.
An intense localized pain in the abdomen especially when you are pregnant but not yet due to give birth.
Any fever in children under 3 months old, or fever with convulsions.
Bleeding that cannot be stopped including coughing or vomiting with blood.
Bloody diarrhea or blood in the urine.
Seizures that last for 5 minutes or new-onset seizures within 24 hours.
Exposure to dangerous chemicals or possible poisoning.
Severe headache or head injury that resulted from accidents or falls.
Broken bones, neck pain, fractures, or intense back pain.
Sudden inability to walk or move, difficulty in speaking, or slurred speech.
Severe or worsening reactions to insect bites.
Taking medication and having a different reaction like difficulty breathing.
Deep cuts or severe burns.
Homicidal or suicidal feelings.
These are some of the conditions that may deem it necessary to go to your local hospital emergency department. You can also call 911 or your local emergency number to ask for assistance. Meanwhile, do not limit the symptoms that you feel to work with the listing above as these are only guidelines to help you decide whether or not to visit the ER as necessary. Do not try to downplay the symptoms as they show, no matter how insignificant they may seem. The doctor at the ER will be able to assess you better if he knows your symptoms and provide the necessary treatment.
It is always necessary to head to the emergency department for an evaluation before it gets worse. Upon arrival at the ER, you will talk to a trained nurse capable of emergency care. The triage nurse will ask about your problem and will check your temperature, pulse, and blood pressure. If your symptoms are severe, she will immediately call a doctor to check on you. Otherwise, she may ask you to wait to accommodate the more serious cases available. Waiting is more of getting your laboratory done and having an X-ray.
If you happen to have an emergency situation, a team of doctors and nurses will take care of you. They may need to check the result of your X-rays and blood work or other tests. A doctor that specializes in your case may be called to evaluate you. In the meantime, you will be made as comfortable as possible. Given that your symptoms or condition changes, you have to inform the doctor or nurse right away. They will be able to assess if they need you to stay for further observation but not admission.
Hospital admission is done to patients who are very ill or need more evaluation and treatment. If the ER was able to treat your symptoms and discharge you, you will be given written instructions on how to take care of yourself at home. Your friend or family member can be asked to pick you up or drive you home. You will also be given prescriptions for any medications you need to take. Make sure you get all the necessary information needed to rest at home. Your doctor and nurse can assist you while you are there at the ER so that getting better at home can be a positive experience.