Friday, April 22, 2011

If It Quacks Like a Quack...

The New York Times profiles Andrew Wakefield, the discredited British physician whose paper attempting to link the MMR vaccine to autism was retracted last year, and whose medical license has been revoked. Meanwhile, the number of needless childhood deaths from completely preventable diseases like measles continues to increase among the unvaccinated.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Big Time

Just discovered that Second Shift has made it to Ambulance Driver's Blogroll O'Doom. AD is one of my favorite reads, and I've taken to occasionally listening to his podcasts on my long runs. To any new readers that happen this way, thanks for stopping by!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Give Blood

Middle-aged male, history of chronic EtOH abuse, arrived via EMS for an uncontrolled upper GI bleed. Quickly intubated to protect his airway, he was hypotensive to the 50s. Piles of used blood bags formed at the base of the rapid infuser as the medical team attempted a transfusion to stabilize his pressure. With blood oozing out of his nose and mouth as fast as it could be given, he remained hypotensive, with periodic bouts of arrhythmia, for an extended period. Finally stabilized long enough to be brought upstairs, we learned less than an hour later that he coded and died.

Without donated blood products, this patient would never have even made it out of the ER. Donated blood isn't a cure-all, but it does help save lives every day.

Only 8% of eligible Americas donate blood. If you're able, please be a hero and consider donating blood.

Friday, April 15, 2011

I Whip My Brain Back and Forth

Dear High School Student,

Welcome to the anatomy lab demonstration. Your extreme enthusiasm for real cadaver parts will make you a great sociopath and/or physician healer.

I regret to inform you, however, that you are not Roger Daltrey, and that spinal cord does not lead to a microphone. Kindly refrain from swinging it as such.

Thank you for your consideration.

Sincerely,

Second Shift

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Lessons Learned

Well, med school sure did get busy there for a while. I wish I could claim that I spent the last month and a half elucidating the intricacies of Ch├ędiak-Higashi Syndrome or memorizing the effects of each and every cytokine, but the truth is that even if I had, those nuggets of knowledge would already be forgotten.

As always, the most memorable lessons come straight out of the ER.

Like, when you flee the bank with the bundles of cash you just stole, resist the temptation to stuff the bills down the front of your pants.

When those explosive dye packs go off, they're going to damage some pretty valuable real estate.