Today was my first day of trauma surgery. It was the first time I’ve had a voice since my post on laryngitis. I havn’t been able to get more than 3 hours of sleep due to coughing fits and crud running down my throat everytime I lay my head down. I finally bought some nyquil.
My first trauma patient was billed by the medics as an “obvious trauma alert, obvious tib/fib fracture and a fortyfive foot fall”. When he arrived, it turns out that it was a “four to five” (not fortyfive) foot fall. He had a bruise on his right lower leg that was not tender. He fell backwards off a ladder and got knocked out. He was discharged from the ED after we cleared his spine. Trauma alerts that get discharged from the ED should not have bee alerted in the first place! Something about him must have freaked out the medics. When he arrived and the ED staff physician saw him, he should have cancelled the trauma alert…the whole hospital stops for one, an OR case was held for this guy.
Ironically, our nurse caring for him used to work with one of the medics who brought the patient in. Her comment was that she wanted to poke his eye out daily with a pen. I guess she didn’t care much for his judgement when she worked in the field with him either.