Thursday, January 7, 2010

Allergy lists

A patient gave me this allergy list today:

"Compazine (I almost died)
Reglan (I nearly died)
Penisillin (I could have died!)
Sulfa (same)
Iodine (I almost could have died)"

29 comments:

Albinoblackbear said...

Proven time and time again...the longer the list, the crazier the patient.

Grumpy, M.D. said...

It wasn't the length of the list that got my attention, or even the spelling. It was the color commentary.

Doctor D said...

Did you ask exactly how close to death they came? Did they see light at the end of the tunnel?

mean_owen said...

I like it when the drama queens say "I should have died", due to whatever event (allergic response, car accident, hangnail, etc.). Is it wrong to agree with them?

Frank, CPhT said...

All those could-have-dieds probably translate to "upset stomach" or "mild nausea". At least, that is probably what they mean if your patients are anything like the ones we get in our hospital. Although the best was the patient who claimed an allergy to Tylenol, claiming that their reaction was "death". Oddly, the patient quickly overcame that allergy, when they discovered that Tylenol was one of the ingredients in the Percocet that they take religiously...

King J's Queen said...

coulda-woulda...

shoulda???

Anonymous said...

I work in a pharmacy and one of my favorites was the woman who came in telling me she's allergic to epinepherine because it "makes my heart race". I tried explaining that it's a side effect, and not an allergic reaction and she started screaming at me because "It's worse for me than anyone else!".

Anonymous said...

I had early stage ovarian cancer and I almost died...oh wait, that DID happen!!

Does anyone else ever wish that these folks could have REAL pain or a real potentially life ending illness so that they would know the DIFFERENCE??
Pattie, RN

Jacqueline said...

Hmm...I'm allergic to stupid.

hannah said...

I thought I had died the last time they gave me compazine. But that's just the med makes me mildly psychotic. :P

Phillip said...

Penisillin ...

Is that when a rapper gets VD?

Julie said...

definitely need clarification between "almost", "nearly", "could" and "almost could" ... like one of those 1 to 10 scales for pain ...

Anonymous said...

It would have been interesting for the patient to recount what kind of near-death experience they'd encountered.

Like was it 'falling down' death, 'puking guts out' death, 'pain shooting through stomach' death, my mother's frequent expression about her occasionally unruly children 'I was so embarrassed I coulda died 10,000 deaths' death, or rarely 'I felt like I'd died and gone to heaven' death.

Frequently, in the pharmacy the penicillin allergy comment is followed by 'I don't remember what happened; I was a baby, but my mother said I nearly died'.

The RPh said...

Sometimes I would like to ask,"Do have a rash or trouble breathing when taking any medications?" I really think it would cut down on the bullsh*t answers...like "I'm allergic to waiting in line, haha.."...and now you are the back of the line, again. Smarty pants...

RxKerBer said...

Annonymous..... I hear that all of the time "when I was a baby". Drives me nuts.

tottergirl said...

You need to put that on a tee shirt!

Sue Denyhm said...

Geesh, at least when I go to the hospital or a new dr and I give my list of allergies I can specify to which I am truly allergic (penicillin that caused severe hives) and those which just have nasty side effects for me (like psychosis from an anti-emetic, or a mild rash from 2 other antibiotics). I only do this because I figure that there are definitely other drugs that are just as effective (if not more so, esp for the anti-emetic).

Anonymous said...

Suzy, a description of the reaction is very helpful in trying to figure out what might be effective and useful without undue harm. Most in the health care profession try to work under the idea, that the first priority in coming up with something that will work is to 'first do no harm'. Yes, there are probably other things that will work, but we'd also want to know in an urgent situation what didn't work better before 'testing' each option!

ERP said...

What did you prescribe him or her? Haldol and Ativan?

ER's Mom said...

I coulda died when I saw the list!

Matt said...

must have been a male patient ...
'cause otherwise wed have given vaginacillin ...
or fatcillin for a mean case of cellulitis ...
or fishcillin for your tank of gram-positive pets ... but that one's real.

Anonymous said...

Had a patient in the ED yesterday tell me he was allergic to norco but not vicodin.

Anonymous said...

Anon. 08:59--pharmacists get 'it' told to us ALL the time; 'allergic'
to pink (white, blue, speckled, etc.) Lortab, (Vicodin, generic (hydrocodone/acetaminophen, etc.), you know the ones that either do (or don't) say Mallinkrodt on one side (or, whatever). Of course, the reaction is that 'it doesn't work'.

Yea, sure. Special Lortab for you. There's been no problem with Codimal DH, Codiclear, Tussionex, etc. in the past, and you've taken 1,000s of pink (blue, white, speckled etc.) other things just fine with no problem.

(Things you might be surprised to hear if the pharmacist's brain had a direct voicebox.) Or, if we'd been trained in projection ESP.

Garbonzo Bean said...

Strangely, I'm allergic to BRAND name drugs...or, more specifically, my wallet is.

That and penicillin, because my father's brother's nephew's cousin's former roommate once had a reaction to it when he was a baby. No one remembers what happened, but someone nearly died. So I'm told.

Dragonfly said...

My wife had her face swell up with Ramipril, so when my lips started tingling I thought that might be it - because I read that sometimes allergies run in families.

Anonymous said...

I could have almost nearly thought I died laughing at this!

Anonymous said...

Albinoblackbear, believe it or not, there are people who are quite sensitive to meds and are not crazy. You folks like to label them that way but that doesn't mean it is true.

Anyway, I twice told medical professionals that I couldn't take epinephrine. They didn't believe me and I had one of those "almost" reactions.

AA

Anonymous said...

I work in a pharmacy--- my favorite allergy list of all time--

penicillin
iodin
crack

-And how did you find that one out sir?

Anonymous said...

@dragonfly - a sincere LOL.



***Only the WATSONS/DANS work - the rest make me itch!

I also love that *every* person on lortab has a codeine allergy. Some even have percocet allergies. I'm surprised they don't say they have Lortab 5 and Lortab 7.5mg allergies and can only take 10mg.

/fp

 
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