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Old 08-04-07, 06:19 PM   #1
DrPete 
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Nice to get one in the win column...

One of the down sides of gaining experience as a doc is that you start to get this vibe from a patient the first time you see them. When I met Mrs. C 3 weeks ago, I thought she was going to die. When the helo dropped her off in the ICU during my night on call, this 75 year old lady with two replaced heart valves and the worst pulmonary hypertension I've ever seen was septic, in cardiac, kidney, and respiratory failure, on 2 drips just to maintain her blood pressure, and the one lung that wasn't whited out by pneumonia was collapsed by fluid. That whole night I thought she was going to die on me.

After 3 1/2 weeks, she transferred to a rehab facility. Her lungs, kidneys, and heart are working again, and she's back to enjoying her afternoons of watching the Food Network and WWF (Seriously, I'm not kidding--this little old lady loves her some WWF) and chatting with her husband about how the kids and grandkids are doing.

Things don't usually end well in these situations, and it's nice to see a patient come out on the up side of a really dismal situation. Kinda helps make all that time off the bike and up all night feel worthwhile.
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Old 08-04-07, 06:24 PM   #2
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Phenomenal. My bro in law is a doc/surgeon. The stories always amaze me. It almost seems like some people have an internal fire that burns brighter. I know that isn't very scientific, but it seems like some are more resilient than others.
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Old 08-04-07, 06:25 PM   #3
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Phenomenal. My bro in law is a doc/surgeon. The stories always amaze me. It almost seems like some people have an internal fire that burns brighter. I know that isn't very scientific, but it seems like some are more resilient than others.
I agree with you 100%. And no, it's not scientific at all.
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Old 08-04-07, 06:29 PM   #4
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My brother in law practices in a small town in Kansas with a population of about 1300. My sister (his wife) is a RN and attends in the OR. Thought you might find that interesting and probably quite diverse from where you are.

He is the only MD in town and has been for almost 30 years.
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Old 08-04-07, 07:32 PM   #5
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My wife wasn't supposed to survive until surgery. She is in a rehab facility now, expected to make a full recovery. Some people just refuse to give up and keep fighting. It makes a big difference. Having a great surgeon sure doesn't hurt either.
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Old 08-04-07, 07:54 PM   #6
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My brother in law practices in a small town in Kansas with a population of about 1300. My sister (his wife) is a RN and attends in the OR. Thought you might find that interesting and probably quite diverse from where you are.

He is the only MD in town and has been for almost 30 years.
Yeah, just a sliiight difference from my existence in a tertiary referral center with all the bells and whistles... We surgeons love our toys.
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Old 08-04-07, 08:17 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by DrPete View Post
One of the down sides of gaining experience as a doc is that you start to get this vibe from a patient the first time you see them. When I met Mrs. C 3 weeks ago, I thought she was going to die. When the helo dropped her off in the ICU during my night on call, this 75 year old lady with two replaced heart valves and the worst pulmonary hypertension I've ever seen was septic, in cardiac, kidney, and respiratory failure, on 2 drips just to maintain her blood pressure, and the one lung that wasn't whited out by pneumonia was collapsed by fluid. That whole night I thought she was going to die on me.

After 3 1/2 weeks, she transferred to a rehab facility. Her lungs, kidneys, and heart are working again, and she's back to enjoying her afternoons of watching the Food Network and WWF (Seriously, I'm not kidding--this little old lady loves her some WWF) and chatting with her husband about how the kids and grandkids are doing.

Things don't usually end well in these situations, and it's nice to see a patient come out on the up side of a really dismal situation. Kinda helps make all that time off the bike and up all night feel worthwhile.
The World Wildlife Fund is on TV???

Glad to hear about your success.
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Old 08-04-07, 08:33 PM   #8
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Dr. Pete, I guess my husband's resilience continued to amaze the specialized docs at the local MDA/ALS center. He stayed non-invasively ventilated, by choice, and, given his advanced age, and the lack of data for non-invasively ventilated patients, he was expected to die maybe a year or 1.5 years of his DX in 08/03. He died in 10/06....

Sometimes, it helps to listen to the patients and/or their caregivers, who are willingly going "outside the box" to seek life.... Life, after all, in the end, is experiential at best....

In any case, I'm glad to hear that this particular case went well. Living is, indeed, a very individual endeavor....
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Old 08-04-07, 08:43 PM   #9
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wow, what an amazing feeling it must be to save a life... congrats Dr. Pete!
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Old 08-04-07, 10:30 PM   #10
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Cheers to you, Mrs. C 3.
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