Thursday, October 05, 2006

More Famous Turds I have Known.......

In the comments to the post below regarding "Proper Tools", Clint, one of my coworkers, mentioned how a Turd can stop a Heart Attack and save a life.

Strange as that sounds, it is true. We both were there for the "Cardiac Turd miracle".

Maybe 20% of the people we see in the ER truly have what could be described as an "Emergency". That would be defined as "A condition, that if not attended to immediately, could lead to a loss of life, limb or sight." Most of what we see are routine medical problems and minor injuries.

It doesn't take long to recognize someone who really does have something going on though. We in the ER say, "They look bad or They have THE LOOK" and that's enough to jump start the nurses and docs into action.

The "Cardiac Turd miracle" began with a call from EMS, telling us they were bringing a older man (Late 60's) who was having chest pain, shortness of breath (SOB), diaphoresis (Clammy/sweaty) and ST elevation on his cardiac monitor strip.

The strip looks something like this -

To ER folks, this is NOT a good thing. This is what a heart attack looks like on paper. Mr. miracle Turd's EKG looked worse than this example. The staff was all over this guy in a big hurry, trying to get things rolling. I was trying to start an IV line in his left arm, Clint was trying on his right. We could see his rhythm strip on the monitor and it appeared to be getting worse by the minute. Not a good thing. He definitely looked bad and was exhibiting other bad signs, like Profuse sweating and extreme agitation.

He hadn't been there 5 minutes and we were still working on the preliminary things when he starts hollering "I gotta shit".

Well, priorities being what they were in this case, we all told him to go ahead an shit the bed, 'cause he wasn't going to go off to the restroom anytime soon.

He wasn't having any of that and continued to holler "I gotta shit" repeatedly. In situations like that you just have to keep working and do what needs to be done. Clint and I both got an IV started and labs were drawn to see how bad his cardiac enzymes were gonna look.

All of a sudden he stopped hollering and sat bolt upright. I thought to myself, "Shit, there he goes" and prepared to defibrilate him if necessary. I was not feeling good about this guys overall outcome and was fairly sure he was gonna die on us.

Wrong. He sat up and started crapping. And crapping. And crapping. I'm talking incredible amounts here, people. I thought we were gonna need one of those guys who follows the elephants around at the circus to come help clean up the mess.

And then "THE MIRACLE" occurred. The more he shit, the more his EGK began to return to normal. He quit sweating and dried up. His color started returning to normal and his agitation level decreased too. In less than 10 minutes, he was completely pain free and said he felt fine. His EKG had returned to almost normal.

We did our workup and did all the good cardiac things we do and shipped him off to a facility that was better suited to treat him further.

About 10 lbs lighter than when he came in.

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