Renal ultrasound – and where would you like me to pee?!?

Ever had a renal ultrasound? You drink a load of water an hour before you go, they scan your bladder and your kidneys, you pee, they do it again.

Sounds straightforward? Well, it is, unless there’s nowhere for you to pee in privacy.

Last year I had this done for the first time, and the only wheelchair accessible toilet in Kelowna Medical Imaging (101-3330 Richter Street, Kelowna, if you’re interested) is not wheelchair accessible. You can’t fit the wheelchair in and shut the door.

I drank the 3 glasses of water an hour in advance, got to the appointment, was kept waiting an extra 30 minutes, and was then told to pee and come back. To say I was bursting to go was an understatement! I tried to fit wheelchair in from a number of angles and shut the door, but no go, all the time getting increasingly frantic messages from my bladder. Ian and I came up with another plan – quickly. I went in, transferred onto the toilet with the door open, Ian took the chair away, I shut the door – so that the people working at the desk, standing at the desk, and sitting in part of the waiting area didn’t have any more of a show – and I then had to stand up again, pull down my clothes, pee, stand up, sit back down on the seat – enough information for you yet?!? – and call Ian, who then brought the chair in, and, with the door open, I transferred back on to my chair and rolled past all the people who had just witnessed by floor show to go back into the scanner rooms.

All that needed to change was the door needed to swing out and not in.

I rang the clinic, explained it all to the sympathetic – or so I thought – office manager, and she said she would get it altered.

All they needed to do was change the hinges.

A year goes by. All that gets happens is my ability to transfer gets worse. The door is still the same. 

All the needed to do was change the hinges.

And they were 20 minutes late, not 30 minutes.

This time I am prepared! I have a measuring tape with me and my phone to take photos!

I could describe what happened in detail – but I think you get it – scan, rush to loo, door open, transfer, chair gone, clothes down, pee, pull clothes on, sit back down on seat (yuck), chair in, transfer, roll past adoring fans who have watched every step.

The office staff make a suggestion – why don’t I use the bigger public washroom that’s outside the clinic, in the public area of the building. Sure, yes, that’s what I need, to go further away. I’m sure you make that suggestion to all of your able bodied clients?!? And remember, peeing is part of the procedure – they’re not offering this washroom just as a courtesy!

Did you notice how often I washed my hands? Yep. Not at all. I can’t get to the washbasin.

I have the building code on my side – I have my measurements – it doesn’t conform. No more phone calls to supposedly sympathetic office manager. My letter, with building code, photos and measurements, is on its way to the office, my urologist (he sent me there – why should he miss out on the fun?!?) and the City planning department!!!

All they needed to do was change the hinges.


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