January 11th, 2013
pejmanyousefzadeh

Heartless

I am not a doctor, nor do I play one on TV, but I have had loved ones go to the hospital to undergo significant surgical procedures. The aftermath of those surgeries presented said loved ones with significant rehabilitation demands which were made all the more daunting because of the post-operative pain involved.

When said loved ones—and any other patient, for that matter—experiences that pain, s/he is supposed to tell a doctor, who then adjusts pain medication accordingly. The rule set down by physicians is that you aren’t supposed to try to be a hero; if you are in pain, you are supposed to say so, and you are supposed to get the appropriate amount of medication for your pain as a consequence. That certainly was the rule when I had gum recession surgery this past October. I was instructed to take medication to proactively suppress the pain, not to chase pain by skimping on my medication—only to take it when I couldn’t bear the discomfort.

Of course, different people are differently medicated and need different doses of medication. I received a prescription for oxycodone when I had my procedure, but I didn’t have to take a single pill; ibuprofen was more than sufficient to do the job in managing whatever discomfort I felt. And of course, physicians are supposed to be careful about how and what they prescribe, since we don’t want to turn patients into addicts.

But it would be best to leave these kinds of decisions to the doctor and his/her patient. So when an officious, meddling busybody decides that he is in the best position to decide who gets painkillers and who doesn’t, and when said officious, meddling busybody declares that it is okay if some people “suffer” as a consequence of his decision, I tend to get more than a little upset. And you should get more than a little upset too.

Dealing with physical pain as the result of a particular ailment retards one’s ability to recover from that ailment. Michael Bloomberg ought to know that. Banning sixteen ounce soda sales was a stupid enough thing for him and his administration to do—especially since people could simply purchase two eight ounce sodas in order to get around the ban. But this decision is … well, look at the title of this post.

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