Welcome, Friend!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Veritas-Health LLC has recently released patient forums to our Arthritis-Health web site.

Please visit http://www.arthritis-health.com/forum

There are several patient story videos on Spine-Health that talk about Arthritis. Search on Patient stories
Protect anonymity
We strongly suggest that members do not include their email addresses. Once that is published , your email address is available to anyone on the internet , including hackers.

All discussions and comments that contain an external URL will be automatically moved to the spam queue. No external URL pointing to a medical web site is permitted. Forum rules also indicate that you need prior moderator approval. If you are going to post an external URL, contact one of the moderators to get their approval.
Attention New Members
Your initial discussion or comment automatically is sent to a moderator's approval queue before it can be published.
There are no medical professionals on this forum side of the site. Therefore, no one is capable or permitted to provide any type of medical advice.
This includes any analysis, interpretation, or advice based on any diagnostic test

Question for you?? What would you do??!!

MLT01MMLT01 Posts: 172
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:48 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
You are at pre-screening to have testing done for your next Fusion/ Surgery. They put you in a room and gave you a Jonie and you wait anxiously,thinking am I doing the right thing,will it work or make it worse ext..

The patient knows what he/she looks like underneath the jonie. Then the nurse comes in the room with the records of what the patient has been through.
The Nurse ask all the questions again the same ones we all have to answer EVERY visit. Takes a report for any new info/
changes that they may need. Then it happens she looks at the scars from any past surgeries and says "YOU ARE GROSS" :oo

She keeps looking in disbelief at my scars. I have a scar from my Breast bone to my belly button then from my belly button to my pubic bone and from complications on my side. Then I have a scare down the middle of my back and then 2 more scares one on each from my fusion. Again repeats this is gross and states "I guess you will never were a bikini! I laugh and said it's okay my Husband loves each one of them!She responded thank God he does.

What should I have done? I think she was joking I didn't know how to respond!!?? Laugh then but then cried yesterday when I saw them.


spondylolisthesis at L4-5; stenosis,
Lumbar surgeries 1999 L4-L5
Lumbar staph infection 1999-2000"
Meningitis x5 in 1999-2001
Brain shunt 2000"
Brain shunt removed 20001"
ALIF/PLIF fusion 8/5/09
Failed fusion and Failed Hardware
PLIF Fusion scheduled for 10/29/10


  • First you have a great attitude. Scars are the marks on the map of our lives. I have a few from different, non-spine, surgeries. I may not love them but they are part of who I am. My spine scar is still pretty prominent so I guess longer hair is going to be in style for a while.

    But that nurse was completely out of line. Maybe one comment of "of you have been through alot" would be acceptable. But to tell a patient that they look gross multiple times and to comment on wearing a bikini is in appropriate and unacceptable. I would contact the hospital HR department and let them know. You seem OK with this but what about the next patient who isn't? The nurse needs some sensitivity retraining for the good of all patients. If they said this to you I'm sure they are doing the same to others.
  • That is so unprofessional. She could've said 'wow you've been through a lot' but this is too much. I would call patient advocate or Manager at that clinic. I agree totally insensitive and needs proper training in communication with clients. I hope your pre-op tests went well. Take care. Charry
    DDD of lumbar spine with sciatica to left hip,leg and foot. L4-L5 posterior disc bulge with prominent facets, L5-S1 prominent facets with a posterior osteocartilaginous bar. Mild bilateral foraminal narrowing c-spine c4-c7 RN
  • Thank you Kris-NY,

    I was fine with it I guess! I don't like confrontation so I just laughed it off but deep down I felt awful. I hate to get some one in trouble. She was laughing the whole time saying it. I did brake down yesterday. I have to think how I am going to approach this. I wasn't sure if anyone experience the same. Hopefully not
  • Maria,

    It is rare, even on here for me to read a post and literally my mouth falls open *and* I gasp an OMG! I am the type that would have been in her face right out of the box for that "Gross" comment. Way out of line for a medical professional to say that! My god - I am still shaking my head. I agree too, I would report her. Wow!!! So sorry you went through that. *HUGZ*

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • A few years back, I'd have slapped the b$#%h and walked out, hopefully after I got dressed. Now, I would have wanted to slap her silly, but most likely I'd have said something along the lines and you're a stupid rude b@$#h... you know... I can have my scars removed if they ever bother me too much... you'll always be stupid and rude. THEN I'd have called out for the doctor and mentioned how unprofessional she was. Imagine the effect someone like that could have on someone more fragile??

    I highly doubt she was a nurse, maybe a receptionist or something? I would hate to think there are people in the nursing profession that are that clueless.

    There are other lines to consider... like to the doc you could say... are you sleeping with her? because I can't immagine you keeping her around for her patient skills... and explain what she said to you...

    You should never accept miserable treatment, especially from people being paid to be professional.
  • Well while if i would have been in your shoes I can tell you right now it wouldn't have gone well. My answer would have been well my "scars are fixable, but there is no fix for being stupid." More than likely added a comment about if she had been letting the residence practice brain surgery on her. Serious I have no patience for ignorance. One good thing I can tell you, as for that one bad stupid ignorant nurse that makes up less than 1% of all nurses, I applaud almost everyone of them I run into for the work they do.

    AS far as being upset about your scars they will heal in time and become less visible. I had a mailmen standing in line behind me this past summer, before my last surgery and he says "ouch", I said are you okay? He said no really are you okay that is one big scar on the back of your neck. Did I mention he bought my soda? WE all have the battle wounds of life wether they are physically visible or not. Anyone small enough to define you by a scar on your body, is a very small person and not someone you would want to know in life. I like to say karma has it way around that you know.

    Hopefully you will see that nurse again and can act all depressed, tell her your suicidal over them now and go on and on. Ha, see how she feels about what she could have done to someone. But put this out of your mind as far as they don't look good. At least you have a story to tell in life.
  • =)) =)) =)) =)) =)) =)) =)) You ladies crack me up!!!
  • I will say this and maybe I should not --- but I will lol

    Had that been my adult daughter who is 28 yrs old and has so many scars, she would have been devastated !!!
    She has a major body issues as her scars came quite young in life - 13 yrs old for the first set :(

    So thinking of her and how deeply this would have hurt her, I do ask you report this person. To hopefully stop her from doing this again and doing it to someone who could be like my child.

    I am SO sorry this happened to you :(
    L1 - S2 "gone" useless in 1 way or another. DDD. RA. Bone Spurs. Tons of nerve damage/issues. Stenosis. Both knees replaced. 50 yrs old. I had a great fall (hence my user name) at age 41 and it has been a domino effect every since.
  • I would have walked out of that room in the paper gown (if that is what you were wearing) directly to the hearest nursing station and complained while that stupid b!itc4 sat there with her mouth agape! She was completely out of line and should get written up and moved away from the public or patient care.

    I am so sorry that you had such an aweful person "helping" you today. Please file a complaint. If not for your self, do it for the next person (maybe it will be some one not as strong as you).


  • Wow. Just wow.

    If it had been me, I probably would have said "your face is gross" immediately without skipping a beat.
    Additionally, I would get really in her face with the scars to make her uncomfortable.
    As for the bikini remark, "I will wear a bikni if I damn well want and YOU will have to just get over it."

    You have to not give your power as an individual away to anyone else! Stand up for yourself. Don't fall into the victim mentality.

    Please, report this person to the doctor. The comments were unprofessional.

    On the sunny and mild Central Coast of California

    L4-L5 endoscopic transforaminal microdiscectomy June, 2007
    L5-S1 endoscopic transforaminal microdiscectomy May, 2008
  • Report her!! If you haven't done so already, it's not too late. That was the worst report of misconduct by a medical professional that I've heard of in a long time!

    It's big of you to take the high road and respond in a kind manner but that doesn't excuse this gross rudeness. Report her!

    2009 Foraminotomy C6-72010 PLIF L4-S1Multi RFA's, cervical inj, lumbar injLaminectomy L3-4 and fusion w/internal fixation T10-L4 July 17Fusion C2-C5 yet to be scheduled
  • however, I would not condone giving her a taste of her own medicine, i.e. by you making personal remarks back to her. I don't think that would accomplish anything positive.

    Yes, I would definitely report her. I would write a letter to the complaints manager giving her name, if you know it. I would be honest and tell them exactly how it's made you feel.

    Any scar, whether it's come from childhood, cancer treatment, orthopaedic surgery, self-inflicted (it could happen) or whatever, should be treated with common courtesy, respect, tact and human compassion.

    In your complaint you could say that although what she said didn't affect you immediately and that your natural defense mechanism made you laugh it off as a joke, but by the following day however her comments troubled you so much that you broke down and cried. You are complaining to ensure the nurse does not inflict her own personal opinions on someone else and perhaps they should re-evaluate their communication training strategies to avoid this happening in any other department.

    Phew, rant over now!

    Maria - It's obviously upset you enough to write the post in the first place.
    2 x Microdiscectomy 2005 / PLIFusion 2-level 2010 / revision surgery 2011 / NEVRO Senza spinal cord stimulator implanted February 2013. I WILL NOT GIVE IN / UP !!
  • i don't know where you live but if you are in the uk you can send a complaint in to the PALS that's the body that look after any patients complaints .her remarks were insensitive and very unprofessional .you have a right to be treated with respect and dignity many of us have scars and bodies that we dont like but that's our problems medical staff in general tent to be very caring but you do get the odd one that is a pig! sorry that you had to go through that i hope that you do get somethings sorted
  • I am amazed that this happened to you. Totally unprofessional and downright rude. People hide behind the words "just joking" so they can get away with saying mean things.

    I'm sorry that happened to you. I agree with the others, report her. There are so many women (and men) that have insecurities about their bodies and to be told by a health professional that they are gross is inexcusable. Words like that can be devastating to a person.

  • Why not just pull her aside and say something to her about how her comments made you feel? She may have thought she was keeping things "light" and does it really need to be blown into a huge deal reported to her supervisor? If I made a comment to someone that offended them and they came to me and said they didn't appreciate it, I would apologize and refrain from making the same or similar comments in the future. I would respect that person for coming and speaking to me instead of my supervisor and make darn certain I apologize and refrain from any similar comments in the future.

    Just how I would handle a situation like this.

  • I don't see how lowering yourself to someone else's level does anything except make you feel like a jerk as well, after the initial thrill.

    On the other hand, I think it was a very unprofessional comment and definitely deserves mentioning. She can't have not seen scars before- calling you "gross" is just beyond the pale.

    I might have made a comment at the time along the lines of "These scars might seem gross to you, but they are part of my body and I must live with them every day." Then I'd mention it to the doctor in writing.
  • As a nurse hearing that a fellow nurse said something like that is appauling.
    I don't think it matters if it was truly a nurse or a medical assistant (they are usually the ones rooming patients and people "assume" they are a nurse) no one should speak to you that way.

    I also agree you need to report this. If she is really a nurse I don't see how she got out of clinicals if she treated patients this way. I am referring to the idea that maybe she didn't realize she was being rude.

    I am sorry you were treated this way. And I am angry you were. Please file a formal complaint so this doesn't happen to someone else. It should have never happened.

  • Maria, I am sooo sorry for what you had to go through. That is terrible that a so called professional could say the things she did to you. Please Please report this person. You and nobody after you should ever be treated this way.
    >:D< to you
    >:D< >:-D< : Karen
    L3-S1 herniation and bulges, stenosis, mod facet,ddd,impinged nerves,coccydinia
    discectomy/lami July 2011-unsuccessful
    adr L5-S1 Feb 2012
  • You would be doing the medical community and all of the people who she might hurt with her mean and vindictive words a favor by talking to her superior about how she mistreated you.You are beautiful and it is obvious that she is not.
  • Hi Everyone,

    Thank you for responding, The day it happened I was really to preoccupied about the next surgery coming but know that it's over it hit me. The whole visit with her was strange! She defiantly has a different nursing personality that I have ever seen before...Know the point at the pre op where they ask you "do use any recreational drugs" she even said" be honest I won't judge you because If I were you I would be on them" and then the same reaction if I were angry, sad and depressed!She made the same commit.

    I'm just thinking is this her personality and she has no clue how she comes across to others!

    I will be bringing it up to my next Dr visit.


  • I would report her, so someone can educate her as to how to speak to patients without hurting or offending them.
  • Just curious as to what happened to the days when we would have worked these issues out between ourselves instead of reporting or turning someone in. If it is her personality and she doesn't realize she comes across that way, simply talking to her may have far more impact than having a supervisor "discuss" this with her or her having "forced retraining".

  • C, I respectfully disagree. This woman did not grow up in a cave, regardless of how she acts like it. She had to have gone through school, family, personal occassions, etc... I can't imagine that she was lucky enough to be around abrassive people like herself all that time... so somewhere, sometime someone made her aware of how she comes across... she might be one of those people that believe she is "telling it like it is" and everyone needs to hear "the truth:

    Most of us (some of us?) grew up with manners instilled at an early age.... for those that didn't, they pretty much learned fast that being rude, crude, mean or abusive leaves you alone in the play ground.

    I see it now with my nephew and some of the kids in school with him. At 7, you can already see the kids that will not be making it in society without some kind of interventionn... and I think we're all getting tired of it. Most of the parents want kids "like that" removed entirely from the rest of the kids because the time involved in trying to make some silk purses takes away from learning time for the rest of the kids... and they have to deal with the mean little pigs in the interim.

    She reminds me of one of those kids. Her little "laugh" as she says something to tear another into shreds isn't a funny, it's a power move stating, I know I'm hurting you, suffer!

    She needs to go, and go fast.
  • Maria, I hope you do whatever will best make you comfortable. We would all love to "do the deed" when we hear about this happening to someone else... but the reality is that most of us would be too embarrassed to do so.

    Do what is best for YOUR healing and feeings... even if it just means asking for a different nurse, and, if you're comfortable explaining why, do so then.

    Take care :)
  • I think this person must be on drugs or something to say such a thing. Even a stranger on the street would never say such a thing. There needs to be an inquiry into this person who said this. I'm sure it wouldn't be the first time she's said something like that. I would speak with the office Manager about this. If she was a nurse she would be able to do a blood pressure and not sure if she did that? You're pretty vulnerable in a position like this wearing a little hospital gown and you should expect to be treated with respect. Maria I know it's hard and this upset you and it's hard not to take it personal but being a nurse myself I think she needs to be told there's something wrong in what she said. I've seen some tough nurses out there but none like this.
    DDD of lumbar spine with sciatica to left hip,leg and foot. L4-L5 posterior disc bulge with prominent facets, L5-S1 prominent facets with a posterior osteocartilaginous bar. Mild bilateral foraminal narrowing c-spine c4-c7 RN
  • If it is indeed "part of her personality" all the MORE reason to report her! As was said after this post, this person didn't just wake up today and have a slip of the mouth. What if she says the same "gross" comment to another who is then mentally scarred by her thoughtless comments?

    Either way you spin it, unprofessional behavior on her part. I'm glad you're going to tell your doctor about her comments. Hopefully he will deal with it.

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • I am so sorry this happened to you! Your scars are NOT gross, this woman's words were!

    I, too, have many scars and I am very insecure about them. I know that they are part of what makes me, me, but I don't like them and spend way too much time thinking of them.

    You are beautiful and go for that bikini if you want, you'll rock it!

    Wishing you the very best!
  • It is not the patients job to educate those in their places of work,and they should be treating everyone with respect and dignity.There are even laws to this effect.

    If a person does try to talk to someone like this they are likely to get."I was just being honest,I'm a very open and honest person",implying that the patient is somehow lacking.Even if someone is very "open and honest" it is not a ticket to say whatever is on their mind,and using their honesty as a shield to protect them from having done or said anything wrong-simply because it was true in their own mind.There are people who do this and use it as a way to hurt people and destroy their self confidence.Some even get jobs so that they can utilize this strategy as a part of their personality disorders.
  • Too bad you couldn't have squeezed out a few tears and broken down then and there - that would have made the nurse feel like s__ (uh, crap)

    Or - I think I would have said something like - cool isn't it! I've been thinking of doing zipper tattoos over them!

    Big kudos to you for dealing with it and for having survived each and every one of those scars!
  • Did you catch her name? Supposedly hospitals are in this mode of acknowledging the good vs. the bad employees - I would definitely report her to nursing administration. I have a list from my last hospital stay of the good and the bad - but honestly would not go there again.
Sign In or Register to comment.