Wednesday, September 22, 2004

Limitation, How Beautiful

Fourth night call. We’re maxed out on patients, or rather, we have no more beds. Currently, everyone is stable. In spite of this my paranoia keeps me awake. Like rafting in a river with a waterfall except you don’t know where it is. Actually, it’s more like swimming in water with a loose shark. I find myself looking through everyone’s labs and checking on them constantly, afraid I may have missed something crucial, something that will hint the next coder. Having no room for more patients is comforting of sort as I always prefer the devil I know.

The interns are back at work now doing what they do so well. At times I find my paternal instinct kicking in trying to protect my interns from attending’s wrath. Attending has been kinda nonchalant about this whole rotation and he’s barely teaching anything.

For fun I make it a point to strike up a conversation with at least 2 members of every team in the CCU. For those who don’t know, on any given day CT surgery (Cardothoracic Surgery) team, the Critical Care team, the Internal Medicine team and the nurses are all the CCU at the time. Here’s the interesting part, they don’t talk to each other. It’s not a rule, but somehow, before I got here, it became a tradition of sort. I find myself being upset with the rest of the teams for no apparent reason. I guess even unfamiliarity breeds contempt. I asked other residents at different hospitals and I find it’s like that in most places. It’s a little of hospital politics that patients rarely learn about. One that really only exists in the US.

Different Topic: the LOL’s in NAD (refer below) made it through the CCU without dying. The one remaining vein still functions. The lady with the excessive digoxin concentration continues to survive. Her heart is being really obnoxious about it and refuses to let go, good for her!

Topic: avoid the hospital in JULY and AUGUST. Can’t elaborate, just trust me!

Topic: We have a few patients here being evaluated for cardiac transplantation. I had to break the news to one of them that he’ll need a new heart. Actually, no one bothered to tell him and he found out after psychiatry came by to evaluate. Poor guy, it was such a surprise. It was also a surprise for the psychiatrist who was really pissed at us for not telling him about this ahead of time. I was pissed at CHF service for not telling him and they were pissed at the patient for having a shitty heart. We’re all a little pissed.