Friday, November 23, 2007

Working With the Bottom 1% of the Class

Dr. Dumbshit came in to work a weekend shift as a locum. It took me about 15 minutes to figure out Dr. Dumbshit was an accurate representation of his name.

I know that medicine is not an exact science. Being in the medical field gives me a behind the scenes perspective that the general public does not have. When most people complain about a doctor being an ass, a dumbshit, or a sanctimonious piece of crap - I usually just nod and smile, thinking the whole time, "Yeah, okay. Sure, that's your perception." But oh let me tell you - I would agree 110% with them on this one. I think that he may have opened up every medical journal and textbook in sight and said, "Ah...nah....they're not right. I'll do it the opposite way."

EMS brought us 2 victims from an SUV rollover. The 16 year old girl had been sleeping in the backseat and was partially ejected out the side window. Her upper body was in the rig, and her legs were trapped under it as it came to rest on it's side. Luckily, it landed in a ditch so there was a little "give" room under her legs. She still ended up with an obviously deformed left thigh.

Dr. Dumbshit and I prepared for her arrival in Trauma 2. I put the blue handled Xray pad on the stretcher in anticipation of getting her off the backboard ASAP, and still providing a somehwhat stable environment for transfers to CT scan, etc.

"Why are you doing that? Get that thing off of there!" Dr. Dumbshit yelled. Yes, yelled. Our very first interaction and my first thought was 'he has a lump of coal up his ass that may already be turning into a diamond.'

"Um......I'm preparing the stretcher for our trauma patient. This is standard for when we get them off the backboard."

"They better not be on a backboard. There's no reason for it," he replied.

HELLO? Seriously? This was an unrestrained backseat passenger in a rollover crash who was partially ejected. If they didn't require immobilization then I'd eat my cousin's dirty underwear.

"Trauma Standards of Care indicate they should be immobilized. And they will be, because our EMS crew is excellent in the care they provide."

Just as ended my sentence, Medic 1 rolled in with our IMMOBILIZED and splinted patient. God love 'em.

Dr. Dumbshit stomped his foot and yelled, "WHY IS THIS PATIENT IMMOBILIZED? NOW I HAVE TO SCAN THEM!"

Sweet shit on a stick. Seriously, this man was on the verge of a breakdown. The spittle was flying and the veins were bulging on his forehead. I pulled Lucy to the side and told her to go find Dr. Q quickly. Unfortunately, Dr. Q was busy with the patient's mother who was in the other room.

As our patient was screaming in pain, Dr. Dumbshit decided to start his trauma survey focusing on her leg. Yes, he skipped A, B, C, D, E, F, and G and went right to her leg. He started poking and prodding and attempted to take the spider straps off of her. Medic 1 and I both reached down and refastened the straps immediately.

"Dr. Dumbshit, do you think you might want to start with the primary assessment?"

Damn it all, he was messing up our flow. Trauma's are meant to be run in a very particular order. When you follow that order, things flow smoothly. You don't miss anything that needs addressed first, and you don't focus on something that does not matter at that particular moment.

"Nurse Crazy Pants, I can see that her leg is probably broken, so why don't I just start with that? Hmmmmmmmmm?"

"Well Dr. Dumbshit, maybe you might want to start with Airway, Breathing, and Circulation since I think she might have a pneumo. Her breath sounds are decreased on the left and she's having some difficulty breathing." Then I whispered under my breath "stupid idiot."

"WHAT DID YOU SAY?" he yelled.

"I said 'Sure, I'll get it'" handing Medic 1 a needle for a possible decompression.

"Oh, well, OK. Sure, let's do that. Yeah. Maybe we need a stat Xray too."

"Coming through!" Our blessed radiology tech shouted and pushed into the room with his portable machine.

"Yep, I already put the order through for that Dr. Dumbshit," I replied.

Luckily, the Xray revealed a minor pneumo. A little oxygen and she was good to go. We didn't have to intervene immediately with something more serious. Her IV lines were started by EMS in the field and fluids were infusing, so we didn't have to worry about that at the moment either. Her vitals were somewhat stable and we completed the rest of her trauma assessment. The splint was still on her leg and providing stabilization there. No increase in swelling noted, pulses palpable and strong. Cap refill brisk.

"OK, let's check her back." Dr. Dumbshit said as he threw off her straps faster than I could cross the room and started to roll her.

"STOP!" I yelled.

"Huh? What?" he said.

"Dr. Dumbshit, we need to do a log roll on her. Let me get 3 other people to help."

"Ah no, we can do it ourselves. She'll cooperate - won't ya Betty Lou?"

"No. You will not roll her without doing it right. Stop right now until I get additional staff." I pushed myself between him and the patient.

"All right, whatever Nurse Crazy Pants. Have it your way."

"Thank you," I replied. Stupid Idiot.

"What did you say?" Oops! did I say that part out loud?

"Um, I said um.... I'm stepping in it. You know - the blood on the floor."

"Harumph," he replied.

Dr. Dumbshit and I then had a professional disagreement about what to scan on her. He felt nothing. I felt maybe stem to stern related to her mechanism of injury. I won. Only because he got tired of me not backing down. But seriously, are we giving good trauma care here or are we just trying to protect the patient from unneeded radiation? Which takes precedence? I would think life saving interventions and the complete CT scan would help us there.

Upon her return from CT scan, Dr. Q made his way into the room. A brief update to him on the occurrences of the last 20 minutes enabled him to send Dr. Dumbshit to the fast track area of the ER while Dr. Q assumed care of the trauma patients.

Thank you blessed baby Jesus!

We ended up shipping the patient out to a larger facility to surgically repair her femur fracture. She did very well and after rehab was back to her normal self.

I never saw Dr. Dumbshit again.


Emily said...

*hangs head, shaking it east-west because no words will do it*

MY OWN WOMAN... said...

Can you hear me sighing?

Libby G. said...

I had to de-lurk for this one! Frightening how many stupid people make it that far in life, huh? Great blog, btw!

Cory said...

OMG! I wondered where Dr. Dumbshit went when I no longer saw him in our Trauma Unit!

Jaime said...

This is frightening. Yikes!

Diet Coke Addict said...

I think that we got Dr. Dumbshit here when he left your place *rolls eyes*

I hate when doctors think that they are smarter than we are, ya know?