Featured image credit: Joel H. Schwartz, P.C.
Making a trip to the emergency room can be daunting. You may not know what to expect or worry that you are panicking for no real reason. To ease your fears, here is a list of the 5 most common things people visit the emergency room for, and some of the expected treatment options.
1. ATV and Motorcycle Injuries
This is probably one of the most well-known reasons for going to the ER, and also an example of a situation where you may not have a choice in the matter as they are more often severe injuries. Be sure to call emergency services, and make sure to control any bleeding you may have. If they happen to be less severe, such as small bone breaks or road rash, use any sort of treatment you may have and quickly make your way to an emergency room to check everything out.
People who visit the ER for an infection can typically fit into two categories: wound infections, and respiratory or other infections (think pneumonia). Either way, a culture is usually taken to determine whether it is a viral or a bacterial infection. This determines the course of treatment and gives the healthcare team an idea of whether more intense measures are needed, such as personal protective equipment. Infections are usually treated with a regimen of medications and antibiotics which have to be adhered to closely to work properly. You can use a medication management app to help you track your doses if you come down with an infection.
While nausea and vomiting can often be treated at home, sometimes they are severe enough to warrant a trip to the emergency room, and are usually tied to some other symptoms that warrant a check anyways. As a patient, if you are experiencing excessive vomiting, you run the risk of becoming dehydrated and suffering electrolyte imbalances. Staff will work to determine the cause of the vomiting and replace any fluids you might have lost.
4. Chest Pain
This is a serious issue and should not be taken lightly. Chest pain is a true emergency and is treated as such in the ER. You will likely be hooked up to a machine to monitor the activity of your heart and given certain medications based on what the doctor feels is necessary. Something frequently tied to chest pain is heart failure, be sure that if your doctor has advised you to check your blood pressure (there are many ways to do so, including some new tech tools for it), that you do so. A really high blood pressure can be reason to visit the emergency rooms if it reaches a certain level.
Fever is another issue that is sometimes treated at home; however, this can be dangerous if home remedies fail to bring the temperature down to a normal range within a reasonable amount of time. As for treatment, you can expect medications, fluids, and tests to be run to determine the cause of the fever.
As you can see, there is a wide range of reasons for people visiting the ER. Many times the cause is a simple one, and after some tests and medications are ordered, they are sent home to recover. If you have a serious concern, it never hurts to have a professional check you out.