YORK, S.C. - Eight-year-old Alexis is clearly feeling good today, as she practices back flips in the family room. But on Monday, the little girl, who has Tourette Syndrome, passed out because of some of her medication.
It'd happened before and her mom Stephanie Lingerfelt knew she needed a blood pressure check. "So that I knew whether or not to take her to the ER," she says.
Lingerfelt, a York resident, says there are only three pediatric blood pressure cuffs in town. One is at Tri-County Pediatrics. Her husband stayed in the car with Alexis, who was still weak.
"I went inside, I was crying, I was really really upset," she says. Lingerfelt says it seemed like she'd get the help she needed from a nurse. "She was really nice, she said she didn't think it would be a problem."
But a doctor told her "no." Lingerfelt says she re-explained the situation. "He slowed down, like I was four years old, he was like 'No, not if you're not my patient,'" she says.
Lingerfelt left and drove to their regular pediatrician in Rock Hill. FOX Charlotte's Morgan Fogarty asked her, "What about calling 911?" Lingerfelt says, "I definitely should have done that."
Afterward, Lingerfelt took to her Facebook page, she says just to vent. The posts started coming. She says, "I had no idea so many people were going to re-post it the way that they did."
In fact, a local pharmacist saw the post and offered to order a pediatric blood pressure cuff so Alexis can now be checked at home, whenever needed.
The doctor's office sent FOX Charlotte a statement about the incident, telling us in part, "We do not believe it is in the best interest of patients to undertake piecemeal testing without a full exam as directed by the physician. This person presented herself during the lunch hour and we were staffed with very limited personnel. We are looking into this matter further to insure (sic) all proper office procedures were followed..."
Lingerfelt says, "He (the doctor) could have told me what to do, where to take her, where to get help, where I could take her, he could have called 911, something."
The doctor's office says it did refer Lingerfelt to the nearest ER or urgent care. She is considering filing a complaint with the South Carolina medical board. Coincidentally, this is "Tourette Syndrome Awareness Month."