First Day of Surgery – Shock Rooms

Today was my first shift in the Ben Taub emergency center (EC), and first real workday as part of the surgery rotation. From 9am to 5pm, a classmate and I helped man the shock rooms. 🙂

We saw all sorts of interesting things ranging from stabbings and drug reactions to motor vehicle accidents (MVAs) and a subarachnoid hemorrhage. We had a jam packed room when a patient required adenosine (the EKG strip was crazy), and had plenty of opportunities to interview patients. The EC attendings are incredibly laid back and helpful with shortcuts for working up patients. The nurses helped us get oriented with the shock room’s equipment and routine procedures like placing the pulse oximeter, starting an intravenous line, and doing a 3-lead electrocardiogram (ECG).

This rotation is three months long, but I think it would be prudent to get my studying done well in advance so I could review and do practice questions for at least a month. In light of this ambition, I wanted to try a new style of studying. Coming off of benign gynecological surgery, I’m accustomed to waking up at 4 AM. I set my alarm for the same time this morning, woke up, GChatted, played some Team Fortress 2 (I’ve really gotta cut this out), and got to school around 6:45am. I read ~60 pages of NMS CaseBook and had a chance to review my Boards & Wards notes before even heading over to start my shift. The plan is to continue studying for a few hours prior to my shifts, because I have a lot of difficulty finding motivation to study once I get home. 😛

We’ll see how this “plan” goes. 😀

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