January 26th, 2004

White Coat

Mmmm, what a day already...

today: logged into the gopher to see that i had mail. Opened my mail:
Patient X, MR #*****, has a BAL dated 1.9.04 that is positive for MTB by probe. Any of the team who has had exposure contact with the patient since 12.25.03 should report to Occupational Health for exposure follow-up. Infection control.
Essentially: The patient who I told you about, who ran into the ED of a hospital, stabbed himself, got an infection, and pulled out a total of 7 chest tubes and one foley catheter, has TB in his bronchoalveolar lavage. And all of us who were exposed need to report to occ health to see if we're going to need six months of antibiotics.
I didn't have any close contact, I should be okay.

The team rounded at 0600 this morning, I think I'm glad I didn't know they were planning to. We showed up during GI rounds, also known as breakfast, after blowing off the hour from 0630-0730 when the lecturer didn't show. Wrote notes, got my mail, will duly report to Occ Health later on.
Angel freaked out when I mentioned it, which was really terribly cute. With any luck and no close exposure, I'll be cleared. I love working here...

Patient list is down to 8. Wrote notes on 2, got to call the chaplain for our spinal cord patient. When I went in postcall on Thursday, she was tearful and wanted to talk, so I listened. Her husband was at mass - he was going to take all the balloons that her son had been sent, and have them released after Mass in memory. "He was such a good boy," she told me. "Not good like good behaviour, good as in impish. Everything was a game, he liked to see just how far he could take things today..." He was a beautiful child. I didn't say it, I made the right noises, comforting noises, told her he would be in my prayers, that I was so sorry.
He was a beautiful child, even in death, still and pale, with eyes a bright green-brown. He had impish eyes; I thought it then - eyes that saw more than one would expect - eyes that saw no more.
She wanted someone to sit with her off and on while her husband was out. The chaplain said he'd stop in and see her. Could you do that, Angel? Could you sit by the side of a stranger you knew nothing about, so that she didn't have to grieve alone? I wanted to stay...

Last night's Code77 didn't make it to the hospital; self-inflicted gunshot wound to the chest. We're sending a few more home today. Only three more days of trauma surgery...
Now to wait for EH to page me to go to occ health...
  • Current Music
    Six North Noises
Nescafe rabbit

A quick update:

Called student health. I have to stop by and get a PPD (TB skin test) done. They'll do another one 3 months from now, at which point as long as I don't convert to positive, I'm cool.
If I convert (unlikely), I'll get 6 months of antibiotics.

Things happened in a rush this afternoon, rounds crawled by. These will be painful days, O Best Beloved, after the quick efficiency of the previous residents. I have things to talk about - the man who came up from the OR to die, reading X-rays with Joerg, rounds themselves - but they will have to wait, as I have studied my evening away and completed 30 questions of 500.

What a long day...