Sunday, March 1, 2009

As seen on TV

I started working in the emergency department this week and it
definitely hasn't been as exciting as you would think an ED would be.
It's actually a lot of psychiatry, which I hated while in medical
school and which I still kinda hate out of medical school.

However, I did have a case which still has me thinking, "Could I have
done things differently?" It was a woman who was a few weeks after
delivering her baby and she came in complaining of bleeding. However,
when I saw her, she had minimal bleeding on exam and I discharged her.
Not 30 minutes later, while she was still in the room (thank goodness
discharges take awhile - at least in this case), she just started
hemorrhaging. Blood everywhere. Pale as a ghost. Blood pressure
dropped. Could I have done something differently? If I had, would it
have been any different? She ended up doing fine and the general
consensus was that it was such an odd presentation, but I still think
back on it.

In reflection, I guess it's good that I still think back on the case.
I hope never to be a doctor that doesn't care about the outcome of her
patients. I want to be able to follow up on my patients, realize how I
could have done things better (sometimes realizing that I may or may
not have done something wrong), and learn from the experience. I've
had several cases this year so far that have been me pause and think
back on what I did and if I could have done things differently.
Thankfully, all outcomes have been good.

In becoming a doctor, I am given the awesome privilege to help people,
but with that comes great responsibility.

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