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Patient Success Story – Abdominal Pain

A female patient admitted due to abdominal pain.

In late February, the Health Alliance for the Uninsured received a call from a 46-year-old female experiencing severe abdominal pain. One of our Community Health Workers, Maria-Antonieta, received her request for help in locating a free clinic and getting a well-woman exam. Maria quickly contacted the Tulakes Community Clinic and helped arrange an appointment.

Kim Bryan, APRN, CNP, and director of the Tulakes Community Clinic saw this patient and discovered a large mass on the right side of the lower abdomen while performing a thorough exam. She ordered an ultrasound which showed that a large mass was indeed the cause of the patient’s pain. 

The mass was of uncertain origin and very concerning due to the risk of malignancy. Kim Bryan visited with Dr. Mike Herndon of HAU and communicated the importance and urgency of the case. Dr. Herndon and HAU’s Care Connection Referral Specialist, Dania Hernandez, immediately contacted the Tulakes staff and began assisting them in completing application forms for Mercy Charity.  The necessary forms were completed in less than a week, and Dania could contact Mercy and request expedited approval. The documents were approved 100% that day!

A CT Scan was scheduled the day the approval was issued and performed two days later at Mercy Hospital. Unfortunately, the scan revealed the mass to be extremely large, measuring 19.4 cm – the size of a cantaloupe. The mass was pressing on the patient’s abdomen and pelvis. 

While keeping Kim Bryan and the Tulakes Community Clinic abreast of the developments, Dania and the Care Coordination team began strategizing the next steps. Dania contacted Mercy for a gynecological oncology referral, and they recommended that HAU contact Dr. Camille Jackson, a physician affiliated with their hospital. Dania and Dr. Herndon contacted Dr. Jackson’s office and found her staff kind and quick to act. The patient was sent for lab work, and an appointment was made for a few days following.

Through a thorough examination and the results obtained from the lab tests, Dr. Jackson was able to determine that the origin of the mass was not cancerous. What a relief! The mass still needed to be removed, and surgery was scheduled for March 20th, 2023. The patient is much relieved to know her condition is not cancer.

This very grateful patient, her family and especially her three daughters all feel they have witnessed a miracle. Both through the care and compassion received from so many medical professionals and the speed at which the process flowed. The patient has repeatedly expressed her thankfulness to all those involved in her care and treatment. 

Patient stories inspire us all! During Free & Charitable Clinics Month, we encourage you to share how these clinics have made a positive impact on your life. Let’s spread hope and showcase the invaluable work of these clinics. #TalkAboutItTuesday

Posted in Free & Charitable Clinics Month, News, Success Story