Life in the OR


Well today was my first day at McCormick hospitals, accompanied by my first time in surgery, and it’s an incredible feeling – there are no words to describe it. We got to the hospital in the early morning, and I met my other interns from GapMedics; Jess and Bennita, who were also as excited as I was. After we all changed into scrubs (and crocks) we were immediately thrown into the OR, even before knowing what was going on. The head nurse who was incharge of us is known as Pi No Nah, so she kept us pretty busy for the day.

The first surgery was a repair of fractured Tibia. From the X-ray I could tell that he also fractured his fibula, but it would take a few days of traction before we could also fix that. The bone was shattered, and I saw them pulling pieces out with forceps, which was super cool. They pieced it back together like a jigsaw puzzle, and then started drilling holes, screwing screws, and attaching metal plates to allow the bone to grow back together. As they checked the placement of the bone with the fluoroscope, the three of us huddled behind the radiation shield because there weren’t enough lead coats for all of us. After that, they closed, and we were rushed into the next surgery.

The next surgery we got to watch was a C-Section, which I thought was on the fence between really awesome, and really gross. It was awesome because a little boy was welcomed into the world, screaming (of course) and I could see on the monitor the seconds he had been alive, which really puts a lot of things into perspective. It was really gross though because the baby had not yet learned to have control of his bowels (which I should have really expected, but whatever) and it got everywhere, especially inside the mother… I wouldn’t think it would be a problem though, since it can’t be infectious, just illicit an immune response for being in an abnormal place / from somebody else. I don’t want to think about it anymore; in laymans terms, it was cool.

We breaked for lunch, and when we came back, we got to observe a transurethral resection of a man with benign prosthetic hyperplasia, which was super cool. They went in through a urethralscope through the guy’s junk, and used the cautery to excise prosthetic tissue that was intruding onto the ureter… the surgeon basically just scraped out what was in the way… but jeeze, the amount of blood mixed saline that was flowing out once the scope was removed was enough to fill a bathtub twice…

Oh, I forgot to mention the smell of surgery… body cavities don’t really smell good on their own, but add to them the burning flesh smell, and you’ve got to have your stomach tied down.

The last two surgerys we observed of the day were an appendectomy on a kid, and ureterlithotomy (if that’s even a word). The first surgery was done under general anesthetic, while the rest of them weren’t. They seem to prefer spinal anesthetic, which I would never elect to get, due to the fact that you A) have to be awake the whole time and B) have to deal with the spinal needle without lidocane. Anyways, the kid was put under GA, so that was pretty cool. His appendix was excised, and it was all very routine. We then went to the ureterlithotomy, which is a removal of a stone between the bladder and the kidneys. It was done on a woman, so once again there was the scope snaking up her urethra, but that’s the least invasive way to do it. The stone was broken up, and all of the pieces were collected, but at one point one of the pieces tried to go into the ureter further up, and it was like watching a suspense movie on the screen – crazy fun.
Overall the first day was amazing, and it’s starting to hit me that this is just a regular job for some people. I’m definitely excited for what Wednesday brings!
Life's too short... Travel the World!: Life in the OR

Wednesday, 26 December 2012

Life in the OR


Well today was my first day at McCormick hospitals, accompanied by my first time in surgery, and it’s an incredible feeling – there are no words to describe it. We got to the hospital in the early morning, and I met my other interns from GapMedics; Jess and Bennita, who were also as excited as I was. After we all changed into scrubs (and crocks) we were immediately thrown into the OR, even before knowing what was going on. The head nurse who was incharge of us is known as Pi No Nah, so she kept us pretty busy for the day.

The first surgery was a repair of fractured Tibia. From the X-ray I could tell that he also fractured his fibula, but it would take a few days of traction before we could also fix that. The bone was shattered, and I saw them pulling pieces out with forceps, which was super cool. They pieced it back together like a jigsaw puzzle, and then started drilling holes, screwing screws, and attaching metal plates to allow the bone to grow back together. As they checked the placement of the bone with the fluoroscope, the three of us huddled behind the radiation shield because there weren’t enough lead coats for all of us. After that, they closed, and we were rushed into the next surgery.

The next surgery we got to watch was a C-Section, which I thought was on the fence between really awesome, and really gross. It was awesome because a little boy was welcomed into the world, screaming (of course) and I could see on the monitor the seconds he had been alive, which really puts a lot of things into perspective. It was really gross though because the baby had not yet learned to have control of his bowels (which I should have really expected, but whatever) and it got everywhere, especially inside the mother… I wouldn’t think it would be a problem though, since it can’t be infectious, just illicit an immune response for being in an abnormal place / from somebody else. I don’t want to think about it anymore; in laymans terms, it was cool.

We breaked for lunch, and when we came back, we got to observe a transurethral resection of a man with benign prosthetic hyperplasia, which was super cool. They went in through a urethralscope through the guy’s junk, and used the cautery to excise prosthetic tissue that was intruding onto the ureter… the surgeon basically just scraped out what was in the way… but jeeze, the amount of blood mixed saline that was flowing out once the scope was removed was enough to fill a bathtub twice…

Oh, I forgot to mention the smell of surgery… body cavities don’t really smell good on their own, but add to them the burning flesh smell, and you’ve got to have your stomach tied down.

The last two surgerys we observed of the day were an appendectomy on a kid, and ureterlithotomy (if that’s even a word). The first surgery was done under general anesthetic, while the rest of them weren’t. They seem to prefer spinal anesthetic, which I would never elect to get, due to the fact that you A) have to be awake the whole time and B) have to deal with the spinal needle without lidocane. Anyways, the kid was put under GA, so that was pretty cool. His appendix was excised, and it was all very routine. We then went to the ureterlithotomy, which is a removal of a stone between the bladder and the kidneys. It was done on a woman, so once again there was the scope snaking up her urethra, but that’s the least invasive way to do it. The stone was broken up, and all of the pieces were collected, but at one point one of the pieces tried to go into the ureter further up, and it was like watching a suspense movie on the screen – crazy fun.
Overall the first day was amazing, and it’s starting to hit me that this is just a regular job for some people. I’m definitely excited for what Wednesday brings!