It's been a week since I've last written, and, seriously, not a whole lot has happened. I honestly thought the MICU would have a bit more... um... drama? Live and Death battling over patients while we do our best to heal our patients. For the most part, it's been trying to find placement in a full hospital and boarding well patients while occasionally needing to make room for a sicker patient.
We've had one very awesome save. A woman who came in with fulminant sepsis. Coded just as she arrived on the MICU. Got CPR, intubation, multiple drugs, and was able to leave to the floor 5 days later completely intact. No brain, heart, kidney or other damage.
We've had some patients that we've been able to make comfort care and ease their transition into the next life. Patients that the best medicine we could provide was to allow nature to take its course.
We've seen alcoholics in withdrawal, psych patients testing the limits of the nursing staff, many many non-compliant diabetics in diabetic ketoacidosis, and many septic patients that eventually get better or die. I think we're about 50/50. The "Surviving Sepsis" campaign is barely reaching Buffalo. I was implementing it 3 years ago in Minneapolis on the surgical ICU. As the system improves, I am sure the survival rate will too.
As for now, I am counting down the last week of this service and looking forward to the future. A month of geriatrics, followed by a pediatric ED month, and then the official start of my second year. I will be working on a protocol to make post-cardiac arrest patients hypothermic (low temperature) in order to protect brain cells. I will be working on my EMS requirements. And, hopefully, I will take my first helicopter ride.
Now it's off to the unit to see what has come in overnight, and how my patients have done. We can only wait to see what the rest of the day will bring.