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    Sunday, January 29, 2006


    So, my laptop came back repaired at the total cost of $329. Too much to be called affordable and worth it, but too little to justify another brand-new purchase. So, Hewie was spared the "Office Space" baseball bat beating. However, my printer (Epson Stylus) decided it didn't want to work anymore either... so his fate was being thrown off the third floor of the barracks and as you can see from the picture he didn't fare so well. So, Epson will be sleeping in the Silicon Valley of Death. I purchased another printer, and so now all is peaceful and quiet once again in my room, and I can get back to more important things, like catching up on email, and blogging. Let's hope I didn't piss off the silicon gods too bad and end up with more electronic malfunctions. **Knocking on wood**

    Monday, January 23, 2006

    Laptop Woes

    So, my warranty ran out December 30th for my Hewlett Packard laptop, and sure enough my laptop decided to not turn on the other day, hence my abrupt cyber absence. So, after getting no pity from the HP's customer service I brought my piece of junk to a computer repair shop who still has no idea what's wrong with it- he's had it a week now! So- two lessons... 1) Don't buy a Hewlett Packard laptop (because they should have stuck with making printers) 2)Always, always, always get the extended warranty. I know, I know, how did I not see this coming. I'll not be posting until I get the piece back, and hopefully the repair won't cost an arm and a leg, otherwise, I'll just have to buy a new one which honestly I'm almost tempted to do right now. I get really loyal to my product purchases, and I take it personal when something breaks prematurely. In this case, even if I get the idiot box back fixed relatively cheap, I'll always hold a grudge against it, I'll never type on it with the same confidence, I'll even allow my eyes to wander to other prospects on my next Best Buy run. I'll essentially continue to harbor this beast in my home, but Hewie and I's relationship will never be the same, matter of fact, I think Hewie will be sleeping with the chippies in silicon sea after I give him the "Office Space" fax machine revenge treatment. I've had better weeks. More medicine later, when I've taken mine.

    Thursday, January 12, 2006

    Neuroscience ICU

    I was in NSICU last night, which basically consisted of all the major head injury patients. The patient that stood out the most was a 16 year old young man who had mutiple trauma due to a drunk driving accident. He was the passenger in his friend's SUV who was driving insane according to the other friend who was in the back seat. They were driving like 90 mph, the driver and the other friend were totally trashed, and the passenger was as sober as a judge. I still don't know why he wasn't the one driving, but my guess is the driver was the leader of the little crew. As is the case most of the time, the two drunk kids walked away from the accident with a head a laceration and a sprained ankle bt the two of them. The sober kid in the passenger side had his seatbelt on, but was on the side where the tree had crushed into the vehicle. The firemen used the jaws of life to get him out and he was just destroyed, but alive. He suffered from a subdural hematoma, and an epidural hematoma thus causing his intracranial pressure to go through the roof. His ribs on both sides were shattered and he had two collapsed lungs, which of course also included pulmonary contusions, and heart contusions which resulted in cardiac tamponade. So this kid had bilateral chest tubes put in, a catheter put into his skull to drain out excess cerebral spinal fluid to decrease the intracranial pressure, and he had a pelvic fracture and femur fracture on his right side along with a broken arm. Miraculously there are no abdominal injuries. I helped monitor this kid last night and he was constantly on the brink of "coding". I'll be surprised if he is still alive when I get back on shift tonight, but nurses there say they've seen a couple like him make it before bc he is so young, and a younger body is able to fight longer and harder. The worst was seeing family come in and then watching the attending doctors from trauma and neuro fighting over how to treat him. It was a mess. It seems like there isn't a clear protocol on who is in charge in the hospital, and it sucks to see that affect the treatment of the patient. We always refer to these doctors who come in only for major stuff in the trauma ER as the "Greek Gods and Goddesses who come down from Mt. Olympus". It's good when one comes down, but two God-complexes in one room is a disaster. That's all I got for now, tonight I'll be in Surgical Trauma ICU, and then I'll probably try to make my way down to the ER again bc it's more exciting down there in general. -Jake out

    Tuesday, January 10, 2006

    The Operating Room

    Today, I was assigned to the operating room(s). There are 24 operating rooms all doing everything from heart bypasses, to knee reconstruction, to breast implants. I scrubbed in on an appendectomy, a skin graft on one of my burn patients from yesterday, a debridement of a MRSA ulcer the size of a grapefruit, and a lumbar fusion. It was exciting to say the least. I also followed around an anesthesiologist in order to do some endotracheal intubations. I had a blast, and learned a lot. The surgeons and residents were more than happy to explain and show me everything they were doing in their procedures. The surgeon performing the appendectomy was quick to remind me that a ruptured appendix could occur with one of my teammates, and that the SF medical handbook includes how to do a field appendectomy. The odds, of course, are slim to none, but after today I think I could pull it off if there were no way to get my buddy out, but I seriously doubt it will ever happen. After the OR, I headed back down to the ER for some faster action, and got in on a GSW to the right tib/fib which had bone fragments everywhere, but didn't bleed much. We simply cleaned it up a bit, pulled traction to put it back in-line, and put a cast on it to get him to the OR for surgery. Then right after that, a 17 year old who had fallen asleep at the wheel came in with an avulsion to the forehead with arterial bleeding. I pulled back the entire forehead for the trauma doctor to pinpoint which arteries the bleeding was coming from in order to tie them off. I could see the kid's skull, and he was alert and oriented talking to me the whole time, it was nuts. Also, of note... the hospital environment is by far the best workplace to meet singles. I've worked in a lot of places, but none had so much potential. WOW! Doctors, residents, and nurses- mostly type A's (like myself) and smart as whips in general. Now I just have to find one that wants to do missionary work. Once again I was approached by a young nurse (from the OR) who asked me out. This is a stange phenomena- getting asked out by girls. I think our society is changing tremendously if the female playing the pursuer is normal these days; maybe it's just my Southern upbringing.??? I have never had so many dates in such a short period of time, it's been fun, but I'm afraid that I still have not met my future wife, and I am still trying to hold out for when I finally meet Ann Coulter. Tsst. Wht a shame that this gal is still single. Anyway- more stuff later...

    Monday, January 09, 2006

    Labor/Delivery and Burns

    This will be a short post, I plan to elaborate later on my overall ER experience, which was good, bad, and ugly. Anyway- I might be the most unlucky SF dude that has ever walked through the doors of the L&D department at Richmond's MCV hospital. Why? Because there wasn't a single pregnant woman in the department for the two days I was there, so I didn't get to deliver a baby like the rest of my buddies. Bummer- guess I'll do that in my next rotation in the Spring. To catch you up to speed, I finished the ER rotation when I got back here from Xmas leave and then moved to L&D, and today I was assigned to the Burn Unit which included the Burn ICU. It was tough seeing all the patients in so much pain, especially the pediatrics. There were three sub 18 month olds, and a three year old all little girls, it about made me cry. Had I not been in front of such cute nurses I might have shed a tear ;-). My day consisted of unwrapping dressings, debriding wounds, applying topical ointments, administering pain meds, and rewrapping the wounds all of which consisted of 2nd and 3rd degree burns. I also helped out the Occupational Therapist get some of these guys moving and working their limbs again. Pain, pain, pain. That about sums up a burn patient. I can't think of anything more painful. Alright, that's about all. We are working 6 twelve hour shifts so I've been absolutley exhausted, but still trucking. I'll keep you posted.

    Wednesday, January 04, 2006

    Back from Christmas Leave

    I just got back to Richmond from Christmas leave. Sorry for the lack of posting, but I was home in Waveland, MS and Slidell, LA helping out around the community, and seeing friends and family. Will be posting again soon...Jake out.