Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Tastefully Done

I've been back on Trauma this past month once again. I for some reason seem to have a better attitude this month about it. That is a good thing since I'm a little more pleasant when I come home.

We had a patient who I was discharging the other day and I was answering questions before he left. He very nice, educated and had a few questions. Our conversation went a little like this:

Me: Now you're going to be tired for awhile

Patient: I noticed. I was running out of energy just walking to the bathroom. How long do you think it will last?

Me: Likely a few weeks. Your gonna feel like...(long pause)...(you can see me ponder my next statement carefully)...

Me: You're gonna feel pretty worked over. I was going to say, it will feel like you had just been hit by a truck. But that actually happened. So, Yes. You will be tired.

He laughed as hard as I did. I'm a comedic genius.

Friday, October 30, 2009


I have to say the past month as been going pretty well. The majority of my shifts have been in the urgent care/pediatrics section of the emergency department. I like the turnover and the opportunity to play with little kids. For the most part they get my humor...or at least appease me by laughing.

Yesterday was going great until I walked by a patients room. Immediately after a quick glance in I blacked out, peed my pants, and found myself balled up in the corner sucking my thumb. What horrible thing could I have seen within that patient room you ask? No it wasn't a zombie, a mother eating her baby whole, or even worse Nancy Pelosi. It was one of my patients. A mother who's baby I delivered almost 2 whole years ago. This just wasn't any delivery. I had to brush my teeth and shower with bleach for an entire week. The delivery was uncomplicated, but the aftermath has scarred me for life. You see after the baby was out and there was nothing but a pool of blood in between the patients leg (which doesn't bother me one bit) I noticed something. Bubbles. Bubbles that were getting bigger and increasing in size. My heart began to race and beads of sweat accumulated on my brow. What was about to happen I asked myself. I was scared. Then I saw it. A giant brown turd. To make matters worse the patient peeked her head up to see what it looked like and grinned as if she was more proud of the second thing to exit her body that morning. My life has never been the same. I am actually gagging on my own vomitus as I write the post.

I can't take it anymore. I'm going back to my fetal position. Its the only safe place...

Thursday, October 01, 2009

Compassion In Chaos

The last 40 hours have been a complete roller coaster. I just completed a 34 hour shift that spanned the entire spectrum of the medical profession. I have to say, I am absolutely exhausted. I started my day yesterday at 0700 in the Urology Grand Rounds. After a couple of hours of learning about testicular cancer, bladder reconstruction, and Gangrene of the testicles I hopped in my car and headed full speed to the private hospital in town to finish my last shift in the ICU. I saw a few of my left over patients, one of which had a heart attack and tried to die early yesterday morning. I admitted a depressed man who took 60 Xanax at once then called his friend to tell him what he did. His friend didn't come over. Waited for the next morning to call the paramedics. Something I would do to my arch enemies.

After my shift ended I got signout from the General Surgery team and started a call night for general surgery. I was quickly paged by two attendings to see a patient in the ED with a butt abscess as well as a colon cancer patient on the floor. My head was spinning by midnight. I fell asleep to Sportscenter ringing in the background. When I woke up I again jumped in my car and headed back to the University. I grabbed a quick breakfast and headed to the ED to start my first shift. I had trouble spelling my name at this point.

I rounded out my day with a patient with testicular pain and the cutest little spanish speaking girl with a cold. She must of liked me because of my terrible spanish. I admit, I would laugh at me stuttering in a different language. I fumbled through her discharge instructions in spanish to her mom, who was very pleased that I was even trying. I waved goodbye to my patient and she walked over and gave me a big hug. It was something so small (literally) but it reminded me why I suffer through the chaos that has become my life. Thanks little mexican girl. You're welcome to come play with The Foof in Mexitaliamerica anytime. Once your over your cold of course.

Friday, September 04, 2009

The Initial Shock

Hello. You're still here? If I had known all three of my readers were still checking this blog, I might have left a few more posts in the interim. Hindsight is always 20/20 I guess. Well, there has been a reason for my absentee-ism. Real life has set in. I have spent the last 8 years postponing any resemblance of a real job by staying in college. As you are aware that came crashing down this past July. In all honesty it hasn't been too bad. However, it leaves me with little time for anything else. I barely have enough time to play with Little Bunny Foo-Foo. There have been days where I leave before she wakes up and come home after she is in bed. Or even worse, leave when she is asleep and come back the next day after she has been up for hours.

To make things worse I am doing my intern year in a program riddled with problems. I literally have a countdown to the day I start Urology. The surgery program is on "double secret probation" for duty hour violations (working their residents more than 80 hours a week) and what I like to call "FEAR-MONGERING" for the way they treat their residents. The big-wigs rule in March if the program will go on REAL probation next year which according to our superiors has a 95% likelihood. Oh the joys of surgery.

But in the last 2 months I've managed to survive surgical oncology and the dreaded trauma service. Trauma was terrible. I was in the OR only once and spent the entire month helping people that could care less that I was helping them. Then to add salt to the wound, 90% of the patients were all doing something they should not have been doing in the first place... like being 9 years old and riding an ATV at midnight, starting a knife fight, losing a knife fight, playing the game "TAG" with real bullets, drinking and driving, drinking and biking, drinking and walking, and my personal favorite...losing a bar fight against someone with a broken glass bottle and asking "do I look like the Joker?" while your best friend giggles under his over-the-legal-limit breath. As you can imagine I was not a happy camper for the last month.

On the plus side, I somehow landed a rotation at one of the cities private hospitals in their ICU. The hours are great, they let you put in all sorts of central lines, and I have time to blog and play with The Foof. I think the hardest part of my new found employment is I get to call the shots from time to time...and frighteningly enough, people listen.

Yesterday was particularly tough. My patient has widespread breast cancer. She is bed bound, septic, intubated, and has likely had a heart attack during her short 3 day stay. Frankly, the family needs to let this poor lady die. But of course, the family is crazy. Asking us to throw everything but the kitchen sink at this lady (the kitchen sink is a metaphor for blood products because the patient happens to be Jehovah's Witness). Don't act like your not impressed. It was very surreal standing in front of a family and recommending they pull the plug. It was very difficult especially since the they weren't listening. For over eight years I had routinely stood behind somebody as they made similar recommendations and nodded quietly. From now on, I have nobody to hide behind since it is my words starting these conversations. Responsibility is hard sometimes. I guess it will take a little more time getting use to those two little initials hanging on to my name.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Back In The Saddle Again

Why hello. How long have you been here? Apparently longer than I have. Life has been hectic in the past couple of months. A number of things have transpired since the last post. For starters, I am officially a doctor now! This thought still frightens me. I've actually spent the last 7 days straight in orientation to start my residency and I am now certified in Basic Life Support, Advanced Cardiac Life Support, and Advanced Trauma Life Support. With all these credentials behind me, my real job starts in 3 days. Now mind you, the last time I saw a patient and worked in an actual hospital was sometime in early March. Well when Wednesday (Doomsday) rolls around I will stroll into the hospital a new (albeit slightly dumber) man than the last time I entered.

To salt the wound a little more, my first shift will last approximately 30 hours. Yes, I managed to draw the short straw and will have to take call my very first day as a resident. This thought literally makes my little butt hole quiver. I will be running around the hospital all night answering 4 pagers trying to ensure patients that I barely know survive until morning. Oh, and by the way...when I'm not on the floor you can find me in the Trauma bay stapling belligerent drunks heads shut. The more I think about it, the faster I feel my heart beat. I guess I can't complain too much because there will be 120 residents in our hospital alone with that similar feeling in their stomachs. So I won't be the only person wandering the hospital like a lost puppy. I just hope my patients ask me about my thoughts on Iron Chef America and not the doses of their Warfarin. That way they are likely to get a more educated answer.

To Be Continued...

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Daddy Day Care

Well it has been quite awhile since I posted last. I apologize for the lack of internet superciliousness (yeah I just used the thesaurus on that one) in my absence. However, it has been Little Bunny Foo Foo and Me for the past month. You see, I finished my credits last month and instead of paying for The Cryptkeeper to come and watch our baby...I do it myself for a nominal fee. I have to admit, its a pretty sweet job. The Foof just happens to like all the things I like. For example, I love to nap. Miraculously, so does she! I've never fallen in love so quickly. The rest of our day consists of eating, walks around the neighborhood, and my playing the guitar while she smiles and plays with her toys. She loves to be sung to.

We do all this amongst the chaos of our townhouse. You see we just bought a house two weeks ago, so all of our belongings are packed away in boxes. Yesterday I got half way through making dinner to realize all the baking sheets had been packed. Note to self, paper plates are not the same as baking sheets. In case you were wondering, our fire alarm works fine.

Even though buying a house is very satisfying, it has been a very frustrarting process. Since we closed not one thing has gone smoothly. We hired someone to put wooden slats on the fence. Simple job one would think. We he didn't cut the wood so the wood extended 2 feet above the concrete pillars. Then our tile guy said it would take him 4 days to complete the tile. Well its almost been two weeks and he hasn't worked the past 3 days. Yesterday I couldn't even get him to pick up his cell phone. Then to top it all off, every time I go over to see the progress I have to pick up Bud Light cans strewn all over the premises. It seems every time I put The Foof down for a nap, I spend the entire time on the phone with installers making sure they are actually at the house working. My life has truly become a real life Daddy Day Care. The shocker is, I'm only taking care of one toddler.

Friday, February 06, 2009

Tales from the Crypt?

You know as a parent, you quickly become incredibly protective. Especially fathers. It's your job to chase the ghosts from the closet, use your shoe to kill daddy long legs, and keep unwanted strangers away from your family...especially your kids. The Foof is growing by leaps and bounds and our family is changing everyday with her. This week we faced a very unique challenge. A Nanny. Yes, apparently you need to actually go to the hospital whilest in medical school (Mind you, this is something I have avoided since early November). In addition to that, the Hunny Bunny actually has to work since I actually pay thousands of dollars to show up and work 90 hours a week (makes sense to me). So our ability to pay the bills and have insurance rests on the Hunny Bunnies cute, furry shoulders. This of course leaves us with one small (albeit very cute) dilemma. What does The Foof do during the day? Our options included dropping her off at the local daycare, a zestpool of germs, snot, and poo. We would have to take her in the back everyday and hose her off so the stench wouldn't peel the paint off of our walls. We decided against that. Option 2 (my personal favorite) was to leave her at home with Zed and Ari. They are very attentive and this was the actual reason I invested in two dogs for in the first place. However, this argument was quickly vetoed. So this left us with only one choice. A Nanny.

We used and agency since searching the funny pages for Nannies lead to multiple dead end ads of people who lived in a van and offered free mammograms with their nanny-ing service. Shady. Very Shady. Well Wednesday came and I was very pleased with the nanny we had. She could care less that I was still there getting ready. She was all about Little Bunny Foo Foo. She will be coming back next week. However, on Thursday said nanny was unavailable. We had to request another. As I was eating breakfast, I looked up to observe our new nanny walking up our driveway. This is literally what I saw:

Needless to say, I was worried. This nanny was old and I questioned her competence as well as her hearts ability to actually circulate blood to the rest of her body . She quickly put the baby down and while I was eating and tried to relate every minute detail from the year Nineteen Dickety-Two. She rehearsed how she would fight off sabertooth tigers for food, invented fire, and meet the great General Washington at her log house. I didn't doubt that she did all of these things but now wondered if she would ever stop talking so I could finish getting ready for work. I came home as soon as I could worried that I would have to dust off my own CPR training on my own nanny (whom ironically comes CPR certified). Thankfully, all was well and The Foof was happy to see me home. She cried as soon as I walked in the door so the cryptkeeper had to give her up. I said she was free to go but she stayed for another half hour while I rocked the baby to sleep to finish tracing her family tree back to the Pre-Columbian era.

It goes without saying that we won't be asking her to return. I should ask for at least part of my money back because I need to give The Foof a bath tonight to rid her of the smell of Old Lady Farts. I guess there are some smells you can't protect your children from.