This is why we can’t have nice things

Today was hard.

Today was busy.

From the moment I stepped into the OR core I was running.

Within two hours I had given two scrub breaks, a circulator break, and fetched a patient from the ED for an emergent case. It was 1520 and if we could get the patient over and prepped and the surgeon there we might make the 1700 cut off.

When the patient and her daughter and I rolled into the prep area the nurses looked at me with quiet desperation. I asked them if they wanted me to prep her.

They agreed and so I popped back into the prep room and told her that I was now her prep nurse, as I was wearing a different hat. She and her daughter laughed.

She and I did her pre-op checklist and she signed her consent. The surgeon came to talk to her and I took the opportunity to duck out and inform the CRNA that she was prepped and nearly ready to go back. She agreed and went to her room to do her interview. I checked in with the room and they were prepared for her.

I went back to prep to check on the CRNA’s progress and almost ran into her as she was entering the core, looking for me to do the pre-procedure time out.

Long story short, the patient was in the OR at 1600, antibiotics on board, H&P done.

And her case was completed at 1630.


This was one of the only things that went my way tonight.

At the end of our last case, I was doing my usual end of case chores. Nothing on the floor, suction coiled up and discarded, keeping an eye on the field as I busied myself.

There was a clunk.

It’s an unmistakable sound, the noise a camera head makes when it falls to the floor.

The resident has dropped the camera, and was holding the middle of the cord.

I looked him in the face and said simply, “Don’t do that.”

With that I put gloves on and picked up the camera head, coiling the cords neatly, not looking at him.


That’s why we can’t have nice things.

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