Monday, July 13, 2009

Cervical Spine Traction

So I'm still here! Long time no blog! Tuesday I spent in VT, checking out a hospital that I might want to apply to next year when i'm All Growed Up. I spent 6 hours following a TERRIFIC nurse around the ER. Only by "following around" i mean "hanging out in the trauma room" because his patient in there was pretty much a full time job in and of itself. Middle aged man, status post motorcycle ditching. Estimated blood alcohol was probably about .35. Yeah. POINT THREE FIVE.

For comparison, if I, a small-ish sized female were to have a BAC that high, I'd probably be comatose. This dude went DRIVING. Briefly. He managed to smash up quite a few ribs, lacerating both liver and spleen, but that wasn't his main problem. The MAIN problem was that he dislocated his C-spine. Oh, but he still had viable use of all 4 limbs, and no urinary retention. Lucky bastard.

So it was TRACTION TIME! 15 x-rays and 155 lbs of traction pulling from bolts screwed into his skull (which is one of the COOLEST things I've EVER seen) he could feel everything, which didnt make him happy. Also, his vocabulary consisted mostly of explatives aimed at those of us "punishing him" by not letting him move to get more comfortable. As the Orthopod said "sir, if you even NOD you'll never see your penis again. HOLD STILL."

By the end of the shift we packed this prize human being off to the OR for a spinal fusion, and said goodbye to the cops, the patient's last comment still ringing in my ears- "Do you think this violates my parole?"

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

"Do you think this violates my parole?"

LOL ummmmmmmm yeah