Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Balmy nights makes for miserable Medics

Hot, humid nights brings out two things here in the south. CHF and assaults. It was 93 degrees last night with 110% humidity. The air was also very still, nights like this are more bearable with a sea breeze, but last night there was none. So the sweat just sat on your skin. It made all who worked last night move a little bit slower, almost as if the air was so thick held us back. It also make people more mean I think. We got called to a stabbing. No when we got there, it was not a stabbing, well...it was, but it wasn't. He got cut with a knife and had an avulsion on his finger. Now it didn't raise flags when we saw him and he was all sweaty, we were all sweaty. It didn't raise a flag when he was slightly altered, he reeked of ETOH, it didn't raise flags when he kept saying he was thirsty, it was hot, he reeked of ETOH, and to be honest I was wicked thirsty myself. It even didn't raise flags when the blood pressure on the monitor said his blood pressure was 60/30. That damn thing had read a correct blood pressure all night. But when niether me nor my partner could find a radial pulse nor ausultate a blood pressure for ourselves was when we both looked at each other and then at the cops that were standing outside of the back of the truck and say at the same time "Fucker's actually sick!" I put in a 16 ga IV and threw him on a high flow oxygen my partner gets an 18 ga IV and gets him on the EKG (tachy as hell at 130) and We haul ass to the trauma center. He kept saying he was beat with a board in the abdomen (again no flags raised because ADB was soft, flat, non distended) But sure enough, according to the FAST scan at the Trauma Center he had a large amount of blood in his abdomen. I don't know how it works in some systems, but in mine we can, if they don't meet transport criteria, choose not to transport. The finger injury alone does not meet transport criteria. But the altered sensorium 2nd to what We initally thought was ETOH (which did in fact turn out to be shock) did. So you can say, being drunk saved his life.

The other thing we look fotward to on these balmy nights is CHF. This weather really exacerbates it. We gave over the night, 200 mg of Lasix, CPAPed just about everyone who got into the back of our ambulance, and gave more Nitro that even we of that bitter/ sweet orange nitro smell that all medics should be very familar with. I also went through the supply reqs for the night when I restocked after my last CHFer, and every single sheet listed the same thing Lasix and CPAP circuits. Every single one. Thats was all we did last night. But at least it is easy one you get it under control. It's just CPAP, NTG, and Lasix...CPAP, NTG, and Lasix...lather rinse repeat...

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

When I grow up I wanna work someplace where you can turn down people who don't need a ride in the rig. Friday night I had a guy with a small hematoma on his forearm after an assault. Even by his own admission he didn't have a fracture. We could see the hospital less than 2 blocks away from the sidewalk in front of his apt. Yet he wanted his ride to the ED. He had been assaulted and he needed a ride in our rig to validate the gravity of his injury.

Here we call it the killer fog. Three three days of heat, high humidity, and temps that stay above 60F overnight bring out the CHFers. Because we're so far north, a lot of our older residents don't have air conditioning. Somehow the calls always start just about the same time the fog begins to seep out of the forests. Makes slow driving and increases the risk of deer collisions.