Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Who do you let die?

Interesting article on Yahoo Answers.

Who should MDs let die in a pandemic? Report offers answers

By LINDSEY TANNER, AP Medical Writer Mon May 5, 12:14 AM ET

Doctors know some patients needing lifesaving care won't get it in a flu pandemic or other disaster. The gut-wrenching dilemma will be deciding who to let die.

Now, an influential group of physicians has drafted a grimly specific list of recommendations for which patients wouldn't be treated. They include the very elderly, seriously hurt trauma victims, severely burned patients and those with severe dementia.

The suggested list was compiled by a task force whose members come from prestigious universities, medical groups, the military and government agencies. They include the Department of Homeland Security, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Department of Health and Human Services.

The proposed guidelines are designed to be a blueprint for hospitals "so that everybody will be thinking in the same way" when pandemic flu or another widespread health care disaster hits, said Dr. Asha Devereaux. She is a critical care specialist in San Diego and lead writer of the task force report.

The idea is to try to make sure that scarce resources — including ventilators, medicine and doctors and nurses — are used in a uniform, objective way, task force members said.

Now. That's quite a thing. We've known for ages that there are systems of selection in medical environments and situations. I suppose just a little scary to see it in print.

Article goes on to say...

_People older than 85.

_Those with severe trauma, which could include critical injuries from car crashes and shootings.

_Severely burned patients older than 60.

_Those with severe mental impairment, which could include advanced Alzheimer's disease.

_Those with a severe chronic disease, such as advanced heart failure, lung disease or poorly controlled diabetes.

... as examples of how detailed this report gets.

What do YOU think?

There are too many humans. Perhaps life isn't quite as sacrosanct as before...

Thursday, May 8, 2008

GUEST POST: Lenshopper.com - Amazing Emergency Room Stories

Welcome to All Scrubbed Up's 3rd guest blogger... Lenshopper.com! Enjoy their fine fare of humorous anecdotes...

Amazing Emergency Room Stories
Every day hundreds of thousands of people all over the world are rushed to different hospitals emergency rooms. All of them with real injuries and physical complaints but with different reasons as to why they had to be hospitalized. Here are some funny emergency room stories. Whether or not they’re true events is up to you to decide but stranger things have happened. Or?

Tricky Contacts
On a regular Tuesday evening a local emergency room in Pennsylvania gets a visit by a man that can’t remove his contact lenses. Under the obvious influence of alcohol the man complains of his head aching and abnormal pains in his eyes. Explaining to the nurse that he has been trying to remove his without any luck. The contacts will only come out halfway before popping back in. The nurse then uses a suction pump to get the lenses out but with no result.

When the doctor finally examines the man he quickly realizes that the man has in fact not contact lenses but has being trying to remove the membrane of the cornea. Hence the pain in the eyes.

Don’t Ride An Ambulance in San Francisco
After answering a 911 call from an elderly woman paramedics are rushing back to the local San Francisco ER. While driving up an incline ambulance personnel witness how the back doors of the ambulance suddenly fling open. The stretcher with the resting woman flies out the back and rolls down the hills at a horrifying speed. Rolling through a crossing missing ongoing cars by mere inches the stretcher finally comes to a stop and tips over. The woman is found to be without any physical injuries but clearly chocked.

Bungee Jumping With A Foot Loose

Arriving to the emergency room of Tacoma, Washington, Kerry Bingham had spent the night drinking with his friends. After about the 5th pitcher somebody told the story of a friend of a friend of a friend who had bungee jumped from a nearby bridge during rush hour.

Inspired by the story Kerry and his friends decided to follow this dared devil’s example and too bungee jump from the very same bridge. Well there they realize they have no bungee jump cord, a minor detail according to Kerry who is drunk as a skunk by now.

Several minutes later Kerry’s left foot is strapped and secured to a coil of lineman’s cable and he makes the jump only to fall 40 feet before the cable stretches, feel his left foot being torn of his leg and tumble into the cold river beneath.

Miraculously Kerry survives the fall and is picked up by two fishermen and rushed to the local ER. He later thanks god for keeping an eye out for him and swears never to drink again.

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Hospital pecking order...

Okay, okay - so I'm "adapting" another thing from Medical Jokes on Geocities... hope they don't mind, but this was way too good to pass up.

The Surgeon...
Leaps tall buildings in a single bound
Is more productive than a train
Is faster than a speeding bullet
Walks on water
Talks with God

The Resident...
Leaps short buildings in a single bound
Is more powerful than a switch engine
Is faster than a speeding BB gun
Walks on water if the sea is calm
Talks with God if special request is approved

The GP...
Leaps short buildings with a running start and favourable winds
Is almost as powerful as a switch engine
Can fire a speeding bullet
Walks on water in an indoor swimming pool
Is occasionally addressed by God

The MO (Medical Officer)...
Barely clears a picket fence
Loses tug-of-war with a train
Can sometimes handle a gun without inflicting self-injury
Swims well
Talks with animals

The Intern...
Makes high skid marks on a wall when trying to leap buildings
Is run over by a train
Is not issued ammunition
Dog paddles
Talks to walls

The Med Student...
Runs into buildings
Recognizes a train 2 out of 3 times
Wets himself with a water pistol
Cannot stay afloat without a life preserver
Mumbles to himself

Lifts buildings and walks under them
Kicks trains off the track
Catches speeding bullets with her teeth and eats them
Freezes water with a single glance
The Sister IS God