The hospital care is dependent on the hospital or care center available to the person. Usually the person will either go to the emergency room or their doctor, and their doctor sends them to a neurologist. Because GBS is considered a medical emergency, usually a patient who is admitted is place in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU), and monitored closely. After being admitted and becoming stable they may move the patient into a different area in the hospital that meets the new needs of the patient.
A problem that we faced with Annette was that neither the emergency room doctor nor the hospitalist doctor knew she had GBS. The ER doctor wanted to release her until they tried to get her up to walk using a walker (she walked fine before the GBS) and she could no longer walk, and ended up admitting her. The hospitalist the next day said he thought “it was all in her head” and wanted to do a psych evaluation. Not until the right side of her face started to droop did he consider calling neuro. If nurses have never dealt with GBS they may not understand the needs of the patient. It may be up to the patient, the patient’s family or friends, or an advocate to get the right care.