One day, I was oncall. The calls are usually busy calls, but that particular morning was surprisingly pretty chilled out. By 11 we’ve finished all the work, so my partner took a nap while I read a book.
Then 2 pm came, still there wasn’t much going on. Visitors started to pour in. I changed the shift with my partner, she looked after the ward while I took a nap. Oncalls here, no matter what time it is, if you have the opportunity to sleep, grab it, ‘cause u’ll never know when the next time the ward would be as peaceful as that.
I slept peacefully for 2 hours.
It was 4pm.
Dr Syira…patient collapse!!!!
Like lightning, I jumped out of the chair and ran towards the patient.
She was slumped on a chair as I got there. Unresponsive.
I shook her shoulders. No response.
Pressed hard on her chest. No response
Makcik bangun makcik. Makcik jawap saya panggil ni. No response.
I forced open her eyes. Both pupils dilated. SHITT.
Shined light onto her eyes. Both pupils not reactive. SHIT SHIT SHIT.
Doctor macam mana ni. Kakak taktau nak buat apa apa ni.That was the nurse. Chill out, chill out.
On the other side, the patients relatives started crying. Other visitors started to gather around. Some offered to help, most just busybodies.
The nurses stared at me, waiting for instructions.
Ok cool down. I’m in charged here. Rilex rilex.
This is my first time, I’ve only just started working. Damnit brain, THINK!!
Rilek, ok what did I learn in medical school? All theories, no real life experience. It’s ok, I can do this. I KNOW this. I’ve been trained 5 years for this.
So I took charge.
Kak, angkat patient letak atas katil. Tutup curtain. Family tunggu luar. Yang lain, go away. Kak, pegi call MO, Specialist dan Anaest. Jangan balik selagi tak dapat.
I opened the patient’s mouth to check her airways. Her tongue was slumped behind. Inserted an airway in.
Checked her breathing, Chest wasn’t moving. Negative.
Checked her neck pulse. Couldn’t find any. Negative.
Started an ECG monitor. Straight line. Oh dear.
Ok kita start dulu CPR. Skarang!!!!!!!
So I jumped on the bed, and performed the CPR for about 5 minutes before help came. The specialists arrived, and we continued some more.
It was the longest half and hour in my life. I was sweating, and I was so tired, my hands were getting into cramps.
She was still young. And she happily talked to me this morning. I can’t lose her, it’s not her time yet.
But I did lose her.
And she did die.
That night I kept on thing about her.
What could have gone better? What did I do wrong? Should I have done this? Maybe I shouldn’t have done that. Why do I feel so numb? Why am I not crying??? This morning she was alive now she’s gone!
And the M.O tried to counsel me
“ Syira I know this is your first time. Don’t get too hung up on it, you’ll encounter so many episodes like this, you’ll get used to it”
I DON’T want to get used to it, Dammit! I DON’T want to feel numb. I DON’T want to be heartless like you. I WANT to be hung up on it.
Right now, what im most scared of, is not losing a patient. I know that happens, it’s beyond my power.
But what I’m scared of, is turning into those doctors, who treat it just like any other day. Heartless and Cold.
Every doctor turns into that. Can I escape it??