Tempus Fugit

Time Flies…

   Jun 16

Get off my table!!!

Among my discussions today with the registrar I learnt just how complicated things get when someone dies on the table.

And apparently as soon as they’re declared, if they’re on the table, you have to just leave them where they are and walk away and wait for the police to come and investigate.

And if there is exsanguination involved, the police invariably faint.

So at all costs, if possible, without compromising the patient further, get them off the table. There is less fuss if it’s in recovery or ICU. (even if it still is a coronial enquiry).

And while we’re on the subject of exsanguination….don’t fall off horses or motorbikes. Apparently it’s imminently possible (ie more common with these types of accidents than others) to avulse your renal arteries…..not a nice way to go… and not much can be done. And it’s likely that 20 units of blood and 12 units of saline pumped into you will only make it’s way out onto the theatre floor.

I have yet to be faced with a patient dying in front of me… I can imagine it would be worse when there is nothing you can really do about it…. or in spite of your best efforts, and best medical and surgical knowledge, life still manages to escape them.

I guess one thing that I need to remember is that we’re all only human and there is only so much we can do.

I am reminded of a quote from Salvador Dali… “Don’t worry about perfection, you’ll never achieve it”. One could consider this a negative or a positive quote. I like to think of it as a reminder of not chewing yourself up over something that is effectively out of your hands. One can only do so much. C’est la vie.

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