Got there at 08:10. The first student there, before the doctors even. Paediatrics Cardiology. Was given the sketchiest of orientations, just a "You'll be seeing patients when we get some" and managed to split the patients successfully with the two fourth-years who were doing it on rotation. Saw some pretty benign stuff, avoided the complicated case from the institution. Added to my read-up list: Asperger's Syndrome and XXYY syndrome - the second of which I'd never heard of.
Dr. H: Are you sure you should be seeing patients? You sound awful. Hydrated, got the cough under control. Washed my hands every two minutes, used enough alcohol hand scrub to leave residue under my rings. Skipped out at 12:10, bought lunch at McDonald's, threw half of it away.
Went to the ER for the afternoon. Was relatively quiet; I saw a case of conjunctivitis, a bee sting, and followed along for a complicated CP/Autism/developmental delay. Sharing patients with three residents and one staff; not familiar with the forms. Then we got a call. MVC Peds trauma, 7 year old unrestrained back seat passenger. They were still an hour away. I did, I felt bad for being excited about it.
He came in Lifelined, Glasgow score of 13. Awake enough to respond, to complain, to squeeze hands purposefully. The other hospital gave him Demerol and Phenergan (ishotkenney and company: Never give Demerol in head trauma. It's got way too many extrapyramidal side effects. Use morphine or some other narcotic. Peds Surgery Chief says so) and didn't shoot enough X-rays before they lifelined him. So he was X-ray, then CT, as soon as we'd got a good line and good stats. I stuck around, threw out needles for the nurses, carted dirty linen. Scut work. I don't care. It means I was useful there, a pair of hands that did something. Mother's back at the other hospital, something didn't clear on her C-spine. Nobody knows where Dad is, he wasn't in the car. So it was just us and B. I stayed with him while the nurses wheeled him up to CT (no oxygen, he was doing fine without it) and watched. It looks like a liver lac, at the worst.
Left my shift an hour late, once he was back down to ER and admitted to PICU. Walked through the pouring rain to get to the MedSci building, where I called Mike. No answer. Left a message. Checked my mailbox; my first batch of comment cards from the UVC Peds staff are back. They're all marked "Satisfactory", and the comments are transcribed below:
"Very thorough. Intelligent. Courteous to parents."
"Good job. Eager to learn. Read about child's clinical problems."
"Great oral presentation."
"Excellent job. Thorough, focused, good rapport with family. Good exam skills."
*squeals* I'm so fucking thrilled with those reports, O Best Beloved. It's even better than warm fuzzies. I read them all twice, looking for diplomacy in them, and they don't seem to be anything but genuine compliments. This pleases me.
Asher came through the lounge, told me if I needed a place to stay and couldn't get hold of Mike, to call him and Milena. They'd be happy to put me up. I love my classmates.
But now it's 7 PM, and I think I'm going to try buzzing Mike's apartment again, just in case the pager service is as bad as the cell phone service down here.