Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Valium wonderful Valium, Skype wonderful Skype

This was a frustrating day – I spent 2 hours in the CT room trying to get one of my patients a head CT. He’s confused and agitated, so after trying at first to get him to stay still in the CT, the tech called and said the patient would have to be sedated. So I gave him 10mg of Valium (diazepam) and took him to CT. He fell asleep for about 30 seconds, but woke back up. So 30 minutes later, I gave him another 10mg of Valium. He got more drowsy but was still awake! So finally I gave him his 3rd ampule of 10mg of Valium, which is the max you can give. He finally fell asleep, but by the time he got his CT pre- and post-contrast, it had been 2 hours. Super frustrating.

Then I got this new admission, even though it wasn’t our day to admit. Dr. Gluckman got this patient from a private doctor who likes to admit only to Penn teams. The patient was a very interesting patient – he had crazy cardiac findings on physical exam, mostly related to aortic insufficiency and right heart failure. But the patient became very focused on this epigastric pain, which I thought he was saying was cardiac at first. But then he said it’s around his stomach, and it only happens when it gets dark and he lays down for a while. So I thought it was reflux, but the patient didn’t think so – I got a nurse to translate and she said it’s traditional medicine for a “traditional” ailment. The way she described it, something (like something he ate) would be trying to eat itself out of him at night, so he had to go to traditional medicine to have it taken care of. He said that when he got this pain, it felt like he was going to die. After another 2 hours, and this is at the end of the day, he finally said that he was willing to try our medicines, and I gave him an antacid, a proton pump inhibitor (omeprazole), and Tylenol. I really really hope that works.

Then I went home with Phil and Lisa after helping them out a bit and we went to Choppies, the local grocery store. Lisa and I cooked pasta and made this yummy cucumber, tomato and mozzarella salad with homemade vinaigrette for us and also for the on call team once they came back (Kiona, Kristy, and Mike). Then I realized that I left my clipboard (which had all my notes and signout and everything on it) in the female ward while I was helping Phil and Lisa out, and I was soooo upset. I was also worried because I wasn’t 100% sure where I had left it. And I tried calling Kiona (and Kristy – they’re sharing a phone) a few times, tried calling Mike, the hospital, the ward… nobody was answering! It was super frustrating. And Phil helped me out by texting too. Finally one of us (not sure who) got through and Kristy called back on Kiona’s phone. I told them my problem and she said they would look. When they finally got back at 11, they had it! And they were very happy to have food. So everything worked out, even though it was a relatively frustrating day.

Oh, another good thing that happened was that I downloaded and installed Skype! I bought some money on it and called Pete… it’s so cheap! It costs like 4 cents per minute to call any phone, and if you call another computer that has Skype, it’s free! So once Pete gets Skype and gets a headset, we’ll be in awesome shape. And it was sooo nice to talk to him for 15 minutes today – we got cut short because his phone ran out of juice. Isn’t that typical?

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