“Think worst first”. That is our mantra.
“Treat the patient, not the test”. That is also our mantra.
How do we reconcile the two – well, sometimes it’s not that easy! This woman had excellent follow up, returned as instructed, then seemingly reached ‘follow-up fatigue’ (OK, I made that up). She eventually did not follow the advice of the doctor and had a devastating outcome as a result.
The emergency provider sees patients at one moment in time, ramping the importance of follow up to the next level. Sometimes follow up can be as easy as see your doctor if not better in 3 days, sometimes you need to make a call and get a definite time…