I’m not sure what to say

I am not sure what to say.

This past Tuesday night we had a true life or limb surgery in the OR.

It involved a patient bleeding.

The surgeon was super freaked out.

She paged me at 2227.

I arrived at the hospital 2241 (I had to put clothes on).

I got dressed, scheduled the case at 2241.

She paged me again at 2252 to tell me the patient was bleeding and time was of the essence.

I told her I would be able to do more things faster if she would get off the phone and let me work.

The patient was in pre-op at 2314.

Anesthesiologist was upstairs in OB, starting an epidural.

I pulled out the anesthesia consent, took a set of vitals with a BP of 90/60, and noted down her answers from the conversation we’d had on the way to pre-op.

The surgeon was pacing around, completely freaked, wondering why we weren’t moving fast.

The anesthesiologist came down and pre-oped the patient.

I had her sign the anesthesia consent and I cosigned it.

The CRNA did the safety time out and she was in the OR at 2226.

We did what we had to do.

We saved her life.

And today, a full five days later, my boss pulls me aside to tell me that the surgeon’s perception was that I was not moving fast enough.

That I had no sense of urgency.

I was taken aback.

Excuse me?

Who else in this department could’ve been paged, driven to the hospital, picked the case, threw together the positioning aids, retrieved the patient personally, prepped the patient, waited for anesthesia, finished prepping the patient, walked the loved one to the waiting room and still managed to make it back into the OR within two minutes? All within 59 minutes of the page.

Of course I don’t act like I’m in a tizzy.

That does NOTHING to reassure the patient.

But apparently I should’ve been ranting that the patient had to go back to the room.


Because she was bleeding to death.

With a BP of 90/60, pink cheeks, and a normal heart rate.


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