Yes I know, I missed week III, but I will recap here.
Week III was much better than the previous 2 weeks, I only had to do 2 write ups. I got to help my nurse take care of my patients as well as others so I saw lots of interesting cases. It was med surg peds, so nothing too intense; a fractured femur, meningitis rehab, foreign body aspiration, and a CF patient. But that just goes to show what I LOVE about Peds; the variation of the patient type, age, and diagnosis. I love how nurses have to be on their toes, never knowing quite what they will get, and really good at all body systems.
12 hour shifts no longer seem ridiculously long, but rather just like another shift, with more opportunities, which is awesome.
As for this week, it was my NICU (neonatal ICU)/ PICU (pediatric ICU) week, which means it starts tuesday off with pediatric surgery. So tuesday at 6 am, I marched to the hospital, and watched a extremely interesting surgery. (cut the maxillary into 3 pieces, moved it forward, removed all 4 molars, and cut and reduced the mandible.) The surgery was VERY long, but worth watching. Then today (wednesday) I go into the PICU and there is my patient from the day before!!! So I got to interact with the family, the patient, and learn the in’s and out’s of taking care of an intubated patient with her jaw wired shut ( I also saw her extubated). I also saw a patient on ECMO (if you don’t know what that is, here is a link http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Extracorporeal_membrane_oxygenation) watching ECMO just makes you stare in wonder at what science and good training can do. After today I am so very very sure that PICU is what I want to do. Unfortunately PICU isn’t available at my favorite hospital next semester for precepting, so maybe NICU as a close second? So many decisions and options!!!
I also had the very interesting experience to watch a shaman bless the wing. PICU is moving to another part of the hospital, so many, many religious officials were gathered to do their piece, and do whatever it is that they do per different religions. However the only person who had the floor, so to speak, and did their own bit publicly, was a shaman. She had an assistant bang on a drum, and spoke her piece, and did her thing. The whole performance caused a bit of a stir in the unit, and it was amusing and interesting to watch. As an agnostic the whole show made me even more doubtful. And yes, I say show because of the way it was all acted out. With the shaman’s face towards the sky, her eyes closed, and the deep raspy voice, as if she was channeling the ancestors she was talking about and summoning. However every sentence she had to stop, look down, and peek at her paper with her speech on it. Kills the effect a bit.
So anyway. That was all before lunch. After lunch, which included mid term eval’s, I marched up to NICU to explore the unit. I LOVE THE NICU. I might be biased as one of my favorite people in the world works there, but still its a beautiful unit, with interesting cases, and completely different from any other part of the hospital. I saw every baby on the unit, talked to all the nurses, learned a lot, rocked a little one to sleep, emptied an ostomy bag, saw a baby eat for the first time, and just enjoyed the day. The day ended with a half mile power walk to my car under the stars to some good music.
Yup a pretty good day in the life of a nursing student.