A week’s review

Phew! Been gone quite a while, havent I?

These last two days I have been working in a medical ward at the hospital. We have this one deathly sick lady, who they are not ventilating even though she is literally gasping for air with this raspy air-hunger. You can quite easily see that her lungs are tiring very quickly, and each minute that passes is an increasing effort. Her mucus secretions in the lungs are increasing at a devastating rate. Her CD4 count is 6.

What has been getting to me, is the ventilating part. Surely it would take the pressure off her lungs and heart, as she is breathing at a rate of 50+ (normal is 12 – 20 breaths per minute) which thus causes an increased workload on the heart. After much thinking and consulting with my friends, we discussed how placing a patient on a ventilator may be difficult for her family to take her off it even though she is hypothetically “dead”, which would thus cost the hospital a lot of money for each day she remains on it, as well as denying a ventilator to another person who has a better chance of living. Her prognosis is obviously not very good. Yet where is the defining line between  the worth of money and the worth of quality of life?

I also have this other patient who has a disease called DIC (Disseminated Intravascular Coagulation)yet he also seems to be about 55/45 confused. I had to give him a Clexane injection, and as I was preparing to give it to him in the thigh (his abdomen was so distended and hard due to abdominal TB), he started shaking his head no, refusing with high-pitched sounds, and displaying such a fear. Were it to be a fully aware patient, I would not be allowed to give the injection due to refusal. I gave him his, with tears in his eyes, because honest to God he needed this medication, but he was refusing, and how aware was he really and so forth. I felt so guilty. I simply kept apologising to him, and truly meant it.

There is this patient that the ward has “adopted” – he has been there for a year because he doesnt know where he lives etc, and today he got aggressive with me. It is actually pretty scary being threatened by a patient who is banging his fist into his hand close to me, and yelling at me to “GET.MY.THINGS.NOW” . I simply ducked and ran away, whilst telling him that to give him his “stuff” I have to call the sister. Freaky deaky, indeed!

#TheBoyfriend is working some Christian Church thing with a Nigerian pastor of some sort (really misinformed about this one!). Apparently it is very busy! Hope he stays safe!

Oops, gotta dash! Will try update you again soon – am off to dinner with #TheBoyfriend’s ex-girlfriend 😀 (weird, right?!)

Oh! Keeping the people of Japan and other countries that the earthquake and tsunamis and volcanoes erupting are mercilessly destroying. xxx


3 responses to this post.

  1. While I have HUGE respect for what you do I don’t envy it ( Just reading those stories makes me want to cry – I couldn’t do it every day!


  2. Being friends with odd bits of people, my speciality.


  3. i am horrified to find i am not on yr blogroll!


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