Thursday, January 20, 2011

it ain't easy

breaking bad news to patient and his family is not easy. breaking bad news to fellow colleague and his family is even harder.

dr.M rushed through my ER door along with her physiotherapist. in front of them is an old woman, holding a baby girl. she was blue and pale. i thought she had convulsion. but i was wrong. she wasn't breathing and her heart stop beating. we hurried, giving her high flow oxygen and chest thrust while the other searching for her vein to insert the IV line. we set the monitor, but nothing. it's still a flat line. we keep trying. a few attempts failed to put an IV. i called a pediatrician in his clinic to help me in the ER. he also rushed in and after he arrived, he decided to intubate without waiting the anesthesiologist. after he intubated, nothing changed. her oxygen saturation keep decreasing. she's still bluish and pale. adrenaline was given. twice. third time. nothing happen. IV line inserted, but it didn't change anything. she didn't give any response. after 30 minutes trying to save her, the pediatrician stopped our resuscitation and declared her dead.

the harder part is her uncle is my college-mate. he was 2 years older than me. i knew him. it was difficult to explain about the administration and stuff. while he had worse job to do. he had to tell her sister that her daughter has died. and she died in front of her own eyes. in her arms. she stopped breathing in her hug. and it's hard not to shed tears in front of them.

it ain't easy. even though i've done it many times before. telling patients or their family. telling their family that their loved one is in critical condition and probably won't make it. and then declaring them dead isn't easy. and it's not getting easier.

we doctors, we also human being. but we're demanded not to show it. but deep down inside, it crushed our heart. every single life, every heart beat. if it's possible, we will try as hard as we can to keep it.

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