cristal would suffice

January 9, 2009

i know that as a doctor and all i’m not supposed to say this, but i freaking hate doing procedures. i hate (and currently suck at) the scary process of intubating. i hate draping in sterile stuff, and i hate poking kids with needles and making them cry. i don’t like drawing blood, placing lines, or suturing wounds. there is one exception, however:

i really do appreciate a nice LP.

lumbar punctures (using a needle to obtain clear fluid from the spinal canal to test for meningitis) are one of the main procedures performed in pediatrics, especially general peds. you can’t trust a neonate with a fever as far as we’re concerned — basically, they all have lethal meningitis until proven otherwise. as interns, it is a somewhat intimidating procedure and it definitely scares the crap out of parents. but honestly? it’s usually pretty easy. oddly enough, the babies don’t usually mind it so much, if your holder is good and they get to suck on some tootsweet (suger water = crack for babies).

i like the way it feels when your needle goes into the canal (a subtle ‘pop’ that usually means success), the nice clear clean-looking stuff that comes out, and the fun of going for a champagne tap. the definition of a champagne tap is one where the cell count comes back from the lab with absolutely no red or white cells seen. it means that there was no trauma done with your needle, and that you are basically a badass. it is called champagne because traditionally, your attending is supposed to buy you a bottle if you get one.

last night was finally my night. i have come close many times in the past (a beer tap = one red cell!) but . . . presenting, the pride of my call night:

HOORAY! not only does the kid not have meningitis, but hopefully i will score a bottle out of it. i requested veuve cliquot and my cheapass attending said something about korbel. we’ll just have to see!

the rest of the call night? let’s just not talk about it. it was unpleasant, to say the least. i got basically zero sleep and literally could not function the next morning. i slept with my head on the desk from 7 AM to 7:30 (until rounds) and had to present my patients with an indented forehead from the trauma of my sleeping position. zen? well, i tried. but i have limits. i’ll just have to keep working on it!


1.7.9 call #2 / 6

workout: circling the unit 8 zillion times. i did a nice 5 miles post-call, but i guess that belongs in tomorrow AM’s post.

floss report: done, at 6 am. i say it still counts because it was still before the next day truly began!

admits: 3

LPs: 1

blood draws: 1

independent decisions made: 0

catch-up orders put in: 8,254,231

ok, i’ll stop now! must . . . stay . . . positive . . .

1 Comment

  • Reply Claire March 10, 2019 at 7:29 pm

    Our “baby crack” is SweetEaze. Just goes to show we are hard wired to like sugar! Congrats on your tap…I haven’t gotten to do one yet but I did do a paracentesis the other day (I’m on my medicine month). Unfortunately, though everything was done technically correct, the fluid didn’t want to drain, so we had to send him to IR.

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