Dr Special; Or not so much

Posted on Sunday, January 28, 2007

It's been two weeks on the ward as a doc now, and it's been interesting. That is, when I have the time to actually think about it. Things are pretty busy up here in Rocky. I am the intern for the busiest medical team in the hospital at the moment, so I am rarely without something to do.
It's a bit of an emotional roller coaster, with the lows being all doubt ridden - I am a shit doctor, I can't even explain to someone what to look out for in renal failure. The highs are small, and mostly related to having a good laugh with your fellow paper monkeys whilst passing in the hallway. One of the small triumphs for me last week was finally getting an IV in and working in one of my demented old men. It's amazing what you get away with, with a smile and bravado.
One of the more uncomfortable moments, was on the first Friday. I had a patient with suspected neuro-syphilis. It's pretty rare in these post anti-biotic days, but if someone is going to show up with it, it'd be in Rocky...
The patient was rather unco-operative, which in the circumstances is understandable. So they were not quite lying on the edge of the bed, screaming at me, calling me a cunt and motherfucker every time I tried to sterilize the puncture site. Then they almost jumped off the bed when I only touched their skin with the needle containing the local. After 5 mins of this I threw in the towel and refused to do it. Next time I try to do a LP, it's going to be on a comatose demented patient. Not a foul mouthed alcho from down the road.
I am really learning to love my patients.


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