In several of the posts I have been reading short stories about cruising experiences, those are always fun to read. So I thought I would ask you all to post any stories good and bad. If some are bad enough maybe a out of control child or a chair saver will not seem like something worth complaining about on your next cruise.
Maybe someone has done this before, but I have not seen anything lately and I am sure us newbies would like to hear.
I have a horror story that makes chair savers seem like a walk in the park. My boss took his wife on a cruise for his 15th anniversary. While onboard he started having bad stomach cramps so he went to the doctor . The doctor told him, I swear this is true, that he had lymphoma cancer. All he did was push on his stomach. Well needless to say they were in shock and scared to death the rest of the cruise. his wife spent I don't know how much money on the ships phone making air arrangements to get him home. When I got to work that morning their whole family was there crying. I said what is wrong and his son said daddy's got cancer and is dying. My bosses grandfather had died from that kind of cancer 2 years before that. They were waiting for Sherry to call when the plane landed so they could meet him at the hospital. We'll they did and tests were run and guess what he had? An irritable bowel. The doctor gave him medicine and sent him home. He tried to sue but ships doctors work independantly so he couldn't. The cruise line after months of phone calls finally offered him 25% off another cruise. Which he took by the way and loved it. He learned to not go to their doctors anymore tho.
I think the worst was the guy who had a heart attack at the Tivoli Gardens. As we were the cruise hosts, we got the phone call. At 3:00 AM. From the hospital.
So, I called the emergency phone number to advise what had happened. (It was not a BIG heart attack, but the guy was going to be sent home.)
The emergency contact (his wife) was quite interested in learning that he was in Denmark rather than Dallas where he said he was going to be. And that he was travelling with a woman who was NOT his wife.
I ASSUMED (always a mistake) that because of the same last name it was probably one of his children.
I wonder if he had a BIGGER heart attack once she got done with him ???
Second worst, a lady with new bifocals tripped over a curb in Cartagena, breaking one leg and both arms. Back and forth from the ship's doc to the emergency room at the local hospital.
She had to stay in sick bay for a while (you don't want to fly anyone with newly-casted limbs because of the air pressurization in an airplane) and the husband was VERY upset that his cruise was being interrupted and why couldn't they just keep the wife in sick bay until the final port was reached?
Then there was the guy who flew from the east coast to Aukland THREE WEEKS post-surgical from a double knee replacement and darned near bled out on the flight because his sutures ripped.
I don't think doctors on cruiseships have to meet the same criteria for practicing in the US. As I understand it, in the US doctors have to complete at least a couple of years of residency before practicing medicine. When I was working for Medicare and I saw resumes for some doctors who graduated from medical schools in foreign countries then practiced medicine on a cruiseship before joining a residency program in the US. I don't know if this is typical, but it was rather of disturbing. Every doctor I've ever been to had some form of residency training.
RE: Cruise Ship Medical Care!
Ugh! I have several chronic illnesses that require self injections of medication. Not only was I not provided a sharps container upon repeated requests, (no biggie I walked my used needles to the infirmary for disposal)...
I swelled up beyond recognition. As a nurse I know the causes of this- and what can be done. I thought I would just ask someone in the infirmary if they could prescribe a mild diruetic. They treated me as if I was a)stupid b)ignorant c) at fault. I couldn't believe it! I laughed it off actually thinking - "Do not get seriously ill on board, you may end up in worse shape!"
Please go prepared with prescriptions from your own doctor for things that may crop up. I now have a longer list of meds I will travel with. I went with a virtual pharmacy as it was-
If anyone would like to know what I would take with me as precautionary -avoid the infirmary- supplies- just ask
Those are great stories. Linda T., I can't believe your boss believed that doctor. The stories do bring up another good gripe though. Maybe there should be some kind of regulation on cruise ships as to experience level of doctors.