Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Spring, Sprang, Sprung

On my way off to work on Sunday, I noticed the crocus were blooming in the front yard. I guess Spring this year isn't so far behind last year, it just has seemed like such a looonnng winter. It's been in the 60's for the past three days, a drastic change from the snowflakes that were still falling last week.

Yesterday, I went for a run out by the lake. The ice had finally all melted away, there weren't any boats out, but there were a few ducks testing the water. The bare trees looked funny in the bright light... naked and exposed, huddling next to each other.

Today I finally turned the heat off, and have several windows cracked open. It feels good to air out the house.

I had a few days off last week, and when I went back to work the other day, I was shocked to find out that a teenager I had admitted a few nights before had died suddenly on the floor. She'd had heart and lung problems her entire life and had been leading a relatively normal life when she started coughing up blood. When I saw her, she was completely stable, and she got admitted for more formal testing. Everything was done correctly-- specialists were called in early and responded quickly, and I don't think that there was anything that we could have done differently.

While death and bad outcomes aren't all that uncommon, I guess I just have high expectations for stable patients that get admitted. Emergency medicine is high-pressure, but generally you can lump patients into just a few categories: those that go home, those that get admitted and then go home, and those that you just can't fix. I think that I have been brooding about this case because we all thought that this child would do so well. I had to really push the parents to allow her to even stay to get evaluated.


~~Silk said...

But, really stable people don't go to the hospital. They just keep bumping along. You don't see them until something changed (insert ominous music here).

ru said...

I love spring. It is nice to see flowers again after a long cold winter.

I am sorry about the girl, but glad that you knew you (and the rest of the staff) had done everything you could.

Chris said...

Pick those crocus stems and you have yourself some saffron. (Not quite the same as "When life gives you lemons, make lemonade" is it?)