What Do I DO?

Don't be such a pain


While leaving school you tripped on a stair and fell forwardright onto your hand. It really hurts, there is mild bruising and it’s startingto swell. You put some ice on it and wait a few hours but the pain just won’tgo away, it looks more bruised and swollen now, and you can’t really use it.

Answer: Fractured wrist, GO TO ER; When you injure yourself in your hand or ankle, signs you should get check you right away are: persistent or worse pain, inability to walk or move the joint, or a lot of swelling or bruising


You were out with your friends when one of you tripped andfell on the pavement. The site is bleeding and really hurts. There is noswellin

Answer: Minor laceration, TREAT AT HOME; Apply pressure to the cut to stop the bleeding (it may take a few minutes). Then clean off the site with some rubbing alcohol and cover with clean dressing. You can use some Neosporin or polysporin as well. 


You are out talking a walk and you roll your ankle in a pothole. It is mildly swollen but not bruised.

Answer: Minor sprain, TREAT AT HOME; remember RICE for minor injuries: Rest, Ice, Compress, Elevate. Use motrin or Tylenol for the pain.


You were out in the sun with our sunscreen for severalhours. Your skin feels tight and hot and burnt. 

Answer: Sunburn, TREAT AT HOME; stay hydrated, apply aloe or moisturizer to the skin and stay out of the sun


You are experiencing some sharp, stabbing pain in your lowerstomach. It has been getting worse over the past three hours and is now an8/10. You now feel pretty sick and think you might throw up, it really hurts tomove.

Answer:   Acute abdomen, GO TO ER; When you have pain like that it could be an emergency in your belly. Things like appendicitis (inflamed intestines), or abnormally placed pregnancy or infection in your stomach are all reasons for pain and  mean you should be seen as soon as possible.

What a bugger


You woke up today and one of your eyes is red, itchy but notpainful. There is some yellow discharge coming from it as well.

Answer: Pink Eye, GO TO CLINIC: when only one eye is effected and there is discharge its not an emergency but it should be checked by your doctor.


10 days ago you started having a sore throat and since thenyou have also developed at runny nose and cough. Your cough is bringing upgreen phlegm, you have a fever and your throat still hurts. You are not having any trouble breathing.  You think you need antibiotics, whereshould you go?

Answer: Cold, GO TO CLINIC; when cold’s persist for 2 weeks or more, have green mucous or phlegm it usually means bacteria is more likely. Visit your clinic, no need for the ER


Your left ear has been hurting for one week. You’ve also hada runny nose and fever, there is nothing draining from the ear.

Answer: Ear infection, GO TO CLINIC: one sided ear pain, lasting a week could be an infection in the ear that needs antibiotics. Have your doctor look in your ear


Over the past 5 hours you have been vomiting non-stop. It’sjust a yellow color from the stuff you ate earlier that day, but you also feelvery nauseous.

Answer: Gastroenteritis, TREAT AT HOME; stay home, drink water to stay hydrated and keep track of how long you go in between pees. Sometimes it can progress to diarrhea which doesn’t change the management. 


While outside you got bitten by a bee. It really hurts, butyou are having no trouble breathing, no tingling although where it bit you is ared and a little swollen.

Answer: Bug bite, TREAT AT HOME; take motrin for the pain and ice the site where the sting was to minimize swelling

Take my breath away

Question: Over the past week you have been having neck pain. There is a small lump developing and its now hurting to speak or open your mouth at all. You also notice you have had a fever. 
Answer: Neck abscess, GO TO ER; sometimes a collection of infection can happen in your neck. We worry because that can sometimes interfere with breathing and you need antibiotics quickly


You’ve been feeling really down over the past 2 months. Youdon’t really feel like getting out of bed in the morning and you evens stoppedplaying football which used to be your favorite thing to do. Sometimes you feelguilty about the way you’re acting.

Answer: Depression, GO TO CLINC; There are ways to help with depression and not all of them include medication. Talk to your doctor and ask for help. If you ever have thoughts about hurting yourself go directly to your doctor or the ER. 


Over the past month you have noticed your breathing hasbecome a bit more difficult at times. When you’ve been exercising a lot, whenyou’re around dogs and cats and when you’re sick. You remember having a pufferfrom when you were a kid and when you take it you feel better.

Answer: Asthma, GO TO CLINIC; if you’re finding it difficult to breathe at specific times or waking up in the night because you can’t breathe go see your doctor before it has a chance to get worse! Don’t just take old puffers or use someone else’s. 


You are at a restaurant with your friends. As your starteating your meals one of your friends says they think they might be having anallergic reaction. Their tongue is tingling, their mouth feels itchy and itsgetting a bit hard to breathe. There is a red rash that’s itching starting toappear on the skin.

Answer: Anaphylaxis, GO TO THE ER; a severe allergic reaction requires an EPI PEN RIGHT AWAY. If the person has one with them, go ahead and give it, or get someone who knows how to right away. Otherwise call 911. Even if the epipen is given you should proceed straight to the ER. 


While over at a friend’s house who has several dogs and abrother who smokes inside the house, you notice that one of your friends withasthma is having a really hard time breathing and you’ve seen him take hispuffer  3 times in the last hour.

Answer: Acute Asthma, GO TO ER; people with asthma have trouble breathing (meaning breathing fast or like they just ran a race!) when certain things cause their airways to close. They use puffers (usually blue ones) to open those airways back up. Sometimes they need some extra help opening those airways and should be seen in the ER if the puffers aren’t working. 

Its all in your head


You are standing watching some friends play pick up footballwhen all of a sudden one if your friends collapses to the ground.

Answer: LOC, GO TO ER; several reasons you could lose consciousness but its important to be check by a doctor quickly, no matter what time of day it is


You’re out a party with your friends when you notice someoneis passed out on the couch in the middle of a loud party and can’t be woken up.

Answer: Overdose, GO TO ER; when any substance has been ingested that can cause an OD like alcohol, Tylenol or different drugs they should be evaluated in the hospital, go right to the ED


You haven’t been sleeping well lately and you started havinga headache today. It at the front part of your head, a 3/10 pain. You have nonausea or vomiting, no temperature, and no neck stiffness.

Answer: Headache, TREAT AT HOME; Get some sleep, take some Advil or Tylenol for the pain and stay hydrated. Keep the red flag sign in mind.


You are on a camping trip with your friends and you guyshave been up late most nights, not getting a lot of sleep. While watching amovie one night your friend begins to shake uncontrollably with jerkingmovements. He finally stops shaking but now looks like he’s sleeping, exceptyou can’t really wake him up.

Answer: Seizure, GO TO ER; A seizure is when there is abnormal firing of the brain. Sometimes they stop, and sometimes they don’t. They can be brought on my lack of sleep, different kinds of drugs and alcohol and sometimes of unknown cause. Try and make sure the individual does not hit their head, don’t put anything in their mouth (the movies are wrong!) and make sure the area is safe. Call for help or go directly to the ER. The unresponsive state afterwards usually happens and can last up to an hour. They should still be brought to the ER. 


For the past 2 days you have been having a terribleheadache. It has been getting worse over the 2 days and now your neck feelskind of stiff. You think you might have a temperature but you don’t have athermometer at home.

Answer: Meningitis, GO TO ER; Meningitis is an infection of the fluid that surrounds your brain. It is an emergency because you need antibiotics right away. 

Down Under


For several days now you have been having discharge comingfrom your genital area. You haven’t been using condoms but you have only beenhaving sex with one person.

Answer: STI, GO TO CLINIC; you may need some antibiotics but you’ve also had unprotected sex so it would be important to be fully tested.


You have been having some burning when you pee for the lastweek and going more often. You have not had chills and no fevers.

Answer: UTI, GO TO CLINIC; You have an infection in your bladder (the part that hold your pee). You should go to your doctor for some antibiotics because you don’t want the infection to spread to your kidneys


You recently started having sex with your boyfriend andalthough you’re ALWAYS using condoms you know that aren’t as effective as other birth control options forpreventing pregnancy.

Answer: Contraceptive, GO TO CLINIC; Your doctor can talk to you have all different kinds of options as well as address any side effect concerns you might have.


Over the past 5 days you have had a sore throat, cough andrunny nose. You have had a mild fever as well.

Answer: Viral Illness, TREAT AT HOME; viruses are better treated at home with drinking plenty of fluids, resting and some Tylenol for fever. Go to your doctor if it lasts more than 2 weeks


You have been having some burning when you pee for the lastweek and going more often. Overnight though you started sweating and havingchills and think you might have a fever. This morning when you woke up younoticed your back hurt a bit too.

Answer: Pyelonephritis, GO TO ER; Sometimes urinary tract infections can travel up into the kidney. If you think you have a fever, are having chills or any kind of back pain go right to the ER, you need some antibiotics