07 March 2006
see? it's true! i started work this week, and i've really liked it so far. presently i work in the operating rooms prepping the instruments for surgeries and transporting patients from rooms to the surgery area. it's not as much dealing with patients as i was hoping for to start out with, but it's only starting out, and it's turned out to be all kinds of fun. i've met a whole bunch of nurses i like a lot who speak to me in spanish and who don't mind how long it takes me to prep a particular surgical procedure or how many times i make them repeat the english names of instruments in accents so thick i think it's a spanish word i've never heard before.
(the next paragraph is pretty graphic. don't read it if you're squeamish or you want to live with the terrible sensation of having missed out on something really really cool. otherwise, read on because it's awesome!!!)
as a bonus, i often sneak over to watch the surgeries. today a trauma patient came in with a hand so mangled it looked like someone with a congenital hand defect had tried to commit suicide by cutting his fingers and thumb free of his hand. with a hammer. no, wait--worse than that. look at your hand. see how if they're relaxed they all kind of curve one direction? most of this guy's hand did that. in the x-ray, one of his fingers pointed exactly the opposite direction of the rest, and one took a right angle turn at the first knuckle and his thumb seemed to be seriously considering sending a declaration of independence to the rest of the hand. and then there was his palm area. take a moment to appreciate how many bones there are between your wrists and your fingers. feel around there and notice them all--there's a lot! this guy probably has a lot more pieces of bone between there than you do. i say probably because on the x-ray it was all just a big white blur. you just couldn't make out anything. to give you a feel for the general state of this guy's hand, consider that the doctor had been tooling around in there, cutting, removing, suctioning, for probably 10 minutes before he declared "i found a tendon!" to the nurse. no one besides me laughed in the operating room, but am i the only person who thinks that's kind of funny? maybe you had to be there. and not be everyone else who was there besides me. hm. maybe the problem is me.
sorry if that was too graphic. unfortunately i didn't even come close to adequately describing the scene that was that guy's hand.