Archive for December2005


We get sent for an EDP (emotionally disturbed person). The cop meets us outside and says it is an old lady with Alzheimers. She took the trash out in her nightgown even though the trash doesn’t get picked up today. This has happened before — the woman wandering the neighborhood in her nightgown. Her husband […]


The call is for severe bleeding. It turns out to be a burst abscess in a teenage male, who three weeks ago tore his hamstring. He bled internally , but the blood wasn’t reabsorbed by the body and an abscess started to grow. He was scheduled to have surgery to remove the undrained blood. At […]


Last night I watched Scrooged, the Bill Murray version of a Christmas Carrol, where Murray is the bah humbug head of a big TV network. Bill Murray is a very funny actor, and Scrooged always chokes me up at the end, when the little mute kid speaks for the first time and says “God Bless […]


I rarely follow up with my patients. If they are in the ED when I come back with a new patient, I will stop in and see how thay are doing. Or I might ask a nurse or a doctor what was the deal with a certain recent patient from earlier in the day or […]


A sixty year old woman who lives alone feels her throat begining to swell. This is not the first time it has happened — she has a history of angioedema — so she knows what to do. She takes her closest epi-pen (She has ten scattered about the house) and injects herself with the lifesaving […]

A Blanket

It is during the tail end of a snow storm that has left ten inches in six hours. We are on the way back from the hospital after a call where we had to wade through deep drifts to get to a patient’s farmhouse. The roads are barely plowed. We get called for a 93-year […]

People Care

If you are looking to get someone in EMS a great Christmas present, here is the book for them or for yourself: People Care: Career-Friendly Practices for Professional Caregivers Thom Dick is the author of Street Talk, a book of essays that came out about the time I was in EMT school in 1989. It […]

New AHA CPR and ECG Guidelines

I’m like a kid before Christmas waiting for the new AHA CPR and ECC guidelines to come out. For almost a year I have been following the evidence sheets posted on the Heart Association web site, and nearly everyday in November checked the site for the new guidelines to be posted. When they finally came […]

Bathroom Break

Today I did something for the first time I had never ever done before while working in EMS. In this job you learn when you are sitting around waiting for a call that if the urge to use the bathroom comes upon you, you act on it because it sucks to be suddenly hurtling down […]

Scandanavian Beauty

We get a third party call for a woman with abdominal pain coughing up blood. The neighbor meets us at the door and tells us the older woman is feeling woozy, and has been coughing up bright red blood. She also mentions that she hasn’t been acting quite right. Yesterday she was out raking the […]

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