ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel
  • »
  • Education and Science»
  • Medicine & Health Science

Emergency Room Nurse Finally Answer Your Questions, Part 2!

Updated on September 11, 2011
Impetigo - type of rash.
Impetigo - type of rash. | Source


If I had a photographic memory I could describe every rash I have seen to the detail but I do not have to have a photographic memory to tell you were the rashes came from: an unidentified object. After thousands and thousands of the rashes that I have triaged, I have only been able to identify a handful of rashes. The crazy thing about all of this is that rashes are showing up in the emergency room. Rashes=Emergencies...okay, sure. Anaphylactic shock, when someone becomes severely allergic to something and can die from it, equals emergency, but that is another hub, I'm just going to focus on rashes.

Okay let's break this down real easy for everyone to understand. Rashes take many different forms. They can be patchy, bumpy, flat, red, itchy, painful, and I can go on forever. What patients do not understand is that unless they visit an allergist, no test in the emergency room can tell you were your rash came from.

The most common things are foods, medications, new detergents, new perfumes or colognes, insect bites, and even psychosematic rashes. When a patient shows up at the ER, and I attack them with a barrage of questions, I finally find out nothing. They answer no to every possible choice. No new foods, no new medications, no new detergents, no new perfumes or colognes, no insect bites, nothing. So, we give the ER rash cocktail. Some bend aryl, Pepcid, and an oral steroid.

Pepcid? Yes I said Pepcid. As we all know or should know, Pepcid is normally used to relieve stomach acid but what it also does helps with rashes. Rashes, no matter how you get them have activated the histamines in your body. Pepcid is also anti-histamine and a very good one and that is why we include it in our cocktail.

Patients with a mild to medium rash receive this cocktail orally but patients with a very bad rash with swelling get these medications via intravenous line, also known as an IV. There are a few rashes that have caused swelling and is on the border of being an emergency. Those rashes are ones that are on the face and cause swelling to the face or mouth or if any rash is accompanied with shortness of breath. These patients get an IV immediately and receive the previously spoken medications but also get a subcutaneous injection of epinephrine. Let me break that down for you guys. Subcutaneous means right under the skin in the fatty part of the skin, not the muscle and epinephrine is a highly dangerous drug that if given at the wrong dose could cause a heart attack. For this reason is why the patient is put on a heart monitor and oxygen when the epinephrine is administered. It works miracles on the rash, but causes the patient to have palpitations and become quite anxious. If you have nice doctor, the patient will also receive a medication for anxiety.

Bottom line, what all this means is that unless you know you ate, washed, wore something new, you will not find out what caused the rash. It is nearly impossible to identify the cause unless it happens after the patient does something that the patient normally does not do. Benadryl at home usually works very well and no expensive ER bill but if the rash is on the face, causes any swelling of the face, or any shortness of breath is to the ER.


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • soniapipkin profile image

      soniapipkin 6 years ago from Colorado

      We are not vastly overpaid. The bill is as high as it is because of the hospital's charges. I did not post this to offend but just to merely educate on the subject of rashes. The staff at any hospital or doctor's office would not know what kind of rash it was. That was merely educational information. I agree with you when you say there is a problem with or healthcare and I apologize if I offended you. Thank you for commenting.

    • Man from Modesto profile image

      Man from Modesto 6 years ago from Kiev, Ukraine (formerly Modesto, California)

      You need to be more fair-minded. I took some EMT courses. I was a bit surprised to listen to the EMT instructors complain about emergency calls at 3 a.m. They are there to do a job. If people did not call at night, there would be no night shift, no job for them! Sure, it would be nice to sit and chat inside the ambulance all night. But, everyone else works for a living, so why not EMTs? Why not nurses, who are vastly overpaid compared to everyone else?

      And, like you mention, the medical staff can barely answer any real questions. But, the bill comes for $20,000 for a 10-minute visit. Unlike every other service provider in town, the hospital does not have walk-ins. They only have "emergency". And, because the call it "emergency", they are going to charge you extra because you walked in. Every other business is competitive- but not medicine. Why?

      Medicine in America is intentionally short-supplied. In the '50's, a group lobbied successfully to reduce the training of doctors to just 50 campuses. And that is what has driven up the cost of medicine... and, apparently, created a kind of arrogance and superiority completely on the other side of the aisle from "service".


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: ""

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)