Print Story Some Notes From ICU
By Farley Finster (Sat Aug 09, 2014 at 10:49:41 AM EST) hospital, intensive care, ICU, I've felt better (all tags)

Intensive Care is nowhere you want to be. Luckily, you tend not to notice a lot of it. And ironically, the worse you feel here the better off you probably are, and the closer you may be to leaving.

This year I can't seem to stay away from here very long and I've taken a few notes, because after you've been here for a while, you do start noticing everything.

I heard that woman visiting last night around 10p.m. That's way outside of visiting hours but they seem to have severely relaxed the restrictions, iron-clad only six months ago. Her husband wasn't complaining (intubation makes that difficult) but she was still angry. She'll teach this hospital a lesson, no doubt. I barely have a curtain blocking what has now become my regular "room" which sits right across from the quarantine room. That one has a fucking door which this damned woman won't let them shut lest they miss any of her tirade. I've had so little sleep and so many opiates over the past... 60-some hours that I nodded off for a few hours. Twice.

As I was awakened by the early morning arterial blood draw and other checks and meds, I heard them wheeling in fresh meat from a chopper. Down here you can't here the air transport -- the helipad is on the other side of the building -- but you learn the sounds of everything here. Every beep, buzz, klaxon, chime, tone, word, call, each one has a very clear and specific meaning, and the only noises which aren't them are either the oft-repeated sounds of staff at work or the random noise of the patients.

And through the activity of hooking him up to the machinery -- EKG, central line, a cannula or two, finger clip, femoral artery tap, catheter -- one doc was handling the preliminary intake questioning.

Do you drink?
Blood sugar 1000!
So you're diabetic.
Blood sugar.
O2 saturation 74!
    Oh that. I think so.
Type I or Type II?
Were you always diabetic?
Type II
How often do you measure your blood sugar?
Which insulin do you use? Humulin? Lispro? Aspart? Glargin? Detemir?
    No idea.
How do you take it?
How much on what schedule?
How often do you take your insulin?
    Wen I feel like it.
But you don't measure your blood sugar?
    Why should I?

This is why we can't have nice things. My nurse chose this moment to return with a fresh pee bottle and run back off for my morning syringe of pain relief. Coincidence or divine intervention?

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Some Notes From ICU | 6 comments (6 topical, 0 hidden)
Divine intervention by littlestar (4.00 / 1) #1 Sat Aug 09, 2014 at 07:40:58 PM EST

Aaargh by TheophileEscargot (4.00 / 3) #2 Sun Aug 10, 2014 at 01:22:18 PM EST
Not nice places to be, though usually better than the alternatives. Best of luck.
It is unlikely that the good of a snail should reside in its shell: so is it likely that the good of a man should?
Femoral artery: SRS BZNZ by ammoniacal (4.00 / 1) #3 Mon Aug 11, 2014 at 02:44:46 AM EST
Get well soon, champ.

"To this day that was the most bullshit caesar salad I have every experienced..." - triggerfinger

Good gravy by Gedvondur (2.00 / 0) #4 Tue Aug 12, 2014 at 10:24:48 AM EST
I hope you feel better soon.  Some opiates actually keep you from sleeping.

Thinking about you.

An ER story. by Captain Tenille (4.00 / 1) #5 Tue Aug 12, 2014 at 01:23:38 PM EST
I was there because of a weird infection in my hand that was making me feverish, shaking, and delusional.

So I'm laying there getting an IV drip of antibiotics, and some interesting characters come through. The most notable are when I see some sweatpants shuffle by with a shrieking baby (I could only see the bottoms of their legs). The doctor comes in and is talking to them, asking what's going on. They say that their son (the shrieking baby) had been circumcised a couple of days before, and per the instructions they said they were given they removed the bandage from said shrieking son. The doctor said, and I quote, "I HAVE A HARD TIME BELIEVING THAT!". 


/* You are not expected to understand this. */

I wish I hadn't read that by Farley Finster (2.00 / 0) #6 Mon Aug 18, 2014 at 12:34:04 PM EST
I want to believe you made that up.

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Some Notes From ICU | 6 comments (6 topical, 0 hidden)