Oh, the woes of an irritable bladder in a modern healthcare system

3 minute read

I’ve been poked from pillar to post, and not in a good way.

An irritable bladder writes :  

Dear editor,  

I’m a bladder and it all started a couple of months ago. I was feeling a bit under the weather and I complained to Julie – my owner – in the only way I know how.  

After a while though she got fed up with running to the toilet and back for little more than a hot dribble and she tried to book an appointment with her GP. The receptionist laughed at her and said there weren’t any appointments for at least another six weeks – so her next port of call was the pharmacy.  

They were doing some kind of trial there and after confidently diagnosing her with a UTI they sold her a job lot of antibiotics.  

Unfortunately, they didn’t seem to work and by the weekend I was in agony. I kept screaming at Julie in my bladdery way to do something about it. It felt like my fundus was being squeezed through a cheese-grater, but Julie’s not the sharpest stone in the ureter, so to speak, so she decided to go to the emergency department.  

After waiting for 12 hours she was given yet another box of augmentin and told to go the urgent care centre if things didn’t settle down.  

And of course they didn’t. The antibiotics only made Julie piss through her backside and after seven days of misery she finally visited the UCC.  

She was seen by a nurse practitioner who took a lengthy history and ran lots of tests and was told that she had an “irritable bladder” whatever that is. She told Julie to cross her legs, cut down on the cups of tea and stop doing so many “safety wees”.  

A week later we were back to square one and Julie called out an out-of-hours locum who told her she might have a bladder stone and encouraged her to see her own GP.  

After Julie finally got in to see her GP he didn’t like the sound of it and ordered some imaging.  

Turns out I have a suspicious looking growth on my posterior wall and someone needs to poke a camera through my sphincter to have a better look. Who would’ve thought it, eh? Well, clearly not the pharmacist, or the RMO, or the nurse practitioner in the urgent care centre or even that locum doctor.  

I’m just writing to let your readers know that the life of a bladder can be tough, especially if you dismantle and fragment healthcare and replace true ability with the illusion of competence. 

Yours Sincerely,  

A disillusioned bladder  

PS: Julie hasn’t taken the diagnosis too well to be honest. She’s smashing back the old vino and has started smoking again, which can’t be good for your bladder, can it? And trust me, I know what I’m talking about! 

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