By the time Rosemary Petersen arrived at Abbott Northwestern
Hospital’s Emergency Department, she had begun to think that doctors would
never find the cause of her problem.
Petersen has had Crohn’s disease for more than 30 years. For
2-1/2 years, she suffered inexplicable bleeding from her stoma, an opening in
the abdomen created as a way to bypass diseased portions of the intestine,
allowing waste material to be removed from the body.
“I was getting weaker and weaker, and I wasn’t sure how long
I could survive like that. When I went to the hospital near my home, I was told
they couldn’t find the cause unless there was active bleeding. All they could
do was give me blood transfusions,” said Petersen. She received eight
transfusions over that period, and still had no idea what was wrong.
In February 2015, she decided to go to Abbott Northwestern
instead. “Suddenly, I was surrounded by doctors. I just remember all of them
around my bed, discussing what to do next,” Petersen said. She had several
tests and returned home. The next morning she received a phone call that
brought her to tears.
A gastroenterology specialist who had consulted on her case
the previous day had the answer she had been waiting for. “She told me they
knew exactly what was going on, and that it could be treated with surgery,”
said Petersen. “I was so relieved, I cried.”
Since her surgery, she’s had no more problems with the
bleeding. “I can’t say enough about my doctors and the hospital. Everyone was
looking for answers, and they’re so kind and caring. It’s just a great
Our Emergency Department delivers life-saving care and
coordinates the critical first steps that help patients like Rosemary get the
care they need. Help us serve our growing community and its critical care needs
with a gift to the Emergency
Department – Critical Care Campaign.