During my first year of residency, I had a situation with an inpatient where I suspected he had a very elevated INR (I'm not going to get into the background story).
We sent a stat INR. An INR of about 1 is normal. If you want to anticoagulate someone (for most things), you want the INR between 2 and 3. We were concerned his INR might be upwards of 10 and my attending and I were planning for this situation.
Anyway, an hour or two after the stat INR was drawn, I checked in the computer and not only was the stat lab not back yet, it wasn't even pending. I called the lab and the tubes of blood had never even made it down there.
The lab asked me how the blood had been sent, so I called the nurse over and asked her. By now I was getting very agitated because I was afraid for my patient and now it seemed like it was going to be another hour or two of waiting. The nurse said she had "tubed" the blood to the pharmacy... apparently, the blood was now lost in the tubes system.
I went over to the nurse to ask her to redraw the blood. As soon as I walked over to her, she said to me, "You know, you were very disrespectful."
I was totally baffled. "What?"
Apparently, she was really upset that I had called out her name to have her come over to the phone to help me. I tried to explain to her that I was talking to the lab and it was very important and that I needed to know what happened to that blood. I apologized for being disrespectful and said I was just worried about the patient, and I really didn't think calling out her name was that horrible... I was on the phone, I didn't want to lose the connection by putting the phone down... and I could see her sitting at the next table over a few yards away, not dealing with a patient or anything. I just wanted to know where the blood was.
"I tubed it to the lab," she said. "I have witnesses."
"I never said you didn't," I said. (It never for a second had occurred to me that she didn't do exactly what she said.)
"I have witnesses," she repeated.
I was totally confused. Did she think that I thought she just tossed the blood in the garbage can? I didn't think I accused her of anything. I was just trying to track down the blood to run the tests on it. She kept telling me that she always treated me with respect, which wasn't untrue but it wasn't like anyone treated me with THAT much respect. I mean, nurses were constantly calling out MY name. While she yelled at me, there was another nurse who was just sitting there, listening to the whole thing, not saying a word.
This is a situation where I was particularly peeved at being yelled at. First, because she was wasting time yelling at me instead of redrawing the blood. Second, because I honestly hadn't done anything wrong (yeah, what else is new?). And last, because I was hugely pregnant and I thought it was a special brand of awful to yell at a woman who's very pregnant.
On that last point, I have to admit, I always did expect to be treated a little nicer when I was visibly pregnant. It just seemed like something that should have been done, considering everyone knows pregnant women sleep badly, feel crummy, and have raging hormones. Plus, yelling at a pregnant lady is slightly like yelling at a newborn. And you know what? I never was treated different. Nobody treated me even a bit nicer due to being pregnant, as far as I could tell. In fact, one time when I was eight months pregnant, I was looking for a seat on the ward so that I could write a note, and nobody even offered me that. I almost cried.
And if I started yelling and acting like a lunatic while pregnant, I very much doubt anyone would have given me a free pass, saying, "Oh, don't mind her. She's pregnant and her hormones are out of control." Which is okay. I never expected anything like that, which is why I had to make an extra special effort to be nice while I was pregnant. I don't think raging hormones are an excuse to be a bitch to the people you work with. (Only having your name called out in an emergency situation is an excuse to be a bitch.)
Anyway, in case you were wondering, that patient's INR was fine.