Less Than Ideal Timing

Hanging around at 5.50pm one day, J. saw the HO on call (let’s call him HO5) for his ward come in. (people renamed, bed numbers renumbered, etc. for the purpose of anonymization)

“Hey man, I’ve just got one case to hand over. He’s in bed 72. Patient with myelodysplastic syndrome, sepsis with DIC (disseminated intravascular coagulation). But he’s alert, we’ve been checking bloods everyday and it’s all improving. TW downward trend, coagulation profile looks good. Can’t quite wean down the oxygen yet though. Just to keep an eye on him. I think he’s stable for now, shouldn’t give you any problems on call.

5 seconds later:
-ring ring- “Hello doctor HO5 are you the HO on call for ward 93? Patient in 72 stopped breathing please come now,” says the nurse on the phone standing behind J. to the HO on the phone in front of J. Via the phone.

Hmmm… 72? That sounds familiar…

Anyway, J. went to run the resus since it was his patient anyway. Despite aggressive CPR, atropine, epinephrine, ventilation… resuscitation unsuccessful and stopped after 30min on grounds of likely futility. Damn.


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