Saturday, May 16, 2009

Sharpest Patient

A 28 yo male arrived to the ER on a stretcher after being found in the front lawn of the hospital seizing uncontrollably and unresponsive. I arrived into the room as the nurses were removing all his clothing. First, they took off his pants and underwear. Then they proceeded to remove his shirt.

Low and behold a surprise for all of black sharpie ink, the following was on his chest: "Name is ______. Seizures. DOB 10/25/80. Takes Dilantin 100mg 3x a day. Haven't missed any meds. No drugs or alcohol. Call xxx-xxx-xxxx for additional info. Thanks."

Since I work at a large public hospital, it looked like a picasso painting. Wow! Finally a patient with some intelligence. Thanks to the magic sharpie, we called his wife from the number written on his chest and found out that he has uncontrollable seizures refractory to all current medical care. He took a train to our hospital b/c an outside hospital told him that we could do something for him, but seized before making it inside! He got admitted and hopefully was treated so that he can finally take a shower to wipe off his chest!

-Doc Sensitive


"Red" Merriweather Coast said...

Poor guy!

He's going to end up tattooing that on his chest, like the guy from "Memento."

The Bus Driver said...

wow i hope you took a picture of it lol. And maybe encourage him to wear one of those med alert bracelet thingys.

Heather said...

I would think a medic alert bracelet would be slightly more convenient. But at least he had info that could help you readily available.

Maha said...

Smart man!

Aviva said...

I've known people whose medic alert bracelets were unnoticed and/or ignored.

I think this was brilliant because no one could miss it on his chest when y'all undressed him!

Good thing he was male -- might have been harder to fit all that writing on a busty female's chest. :) (And I say that as a busty female!)

sara said...

my friend was joking the other night that she wants "DNR" tattooed on her chest right where the pacer pads would go ... i'm impressed this guy had the time to write all that before getting himself to the hospital though.

and i agree with the others ... slip him a Med-Alert bracelet brochure, perhaps?

Karen Brook Westhaver said...

Uncontrollable seizures. A particularly terrible badness. I once worked with a patient who'd had a successful hemispherectomy and recovered with minimal and barely noticeable deficits. And was seizure free for the first time in her life. It is astonishing how the brain can re-wire itself, even when it has been literally reduced to 1/2 a brain. And yet with the more we learn and medications we discover, we are yet more humbled by coming face to face with the fact that we don't know very much indeed. The guy in this post was brilliant to have all that written out. Amazing.

Grumpy, M.D. said...

Good thing he used a sharpy. Can't use a tatoo, since his meds may change.

That's great.

Me said...

That's awesome.

When my husband had his amputation I wrote a "WRONG FOOT" in black sharpie on the one that they weren't supposed to cut. ;)