#TBT to exactly one year ago working as a surgical resident in the Penn Trauma Bay during the holiday period. I honestly started the rotation being terrified to have so much
responsibility in emergency cases but the experience taught me how to remain calm in stressful situations and to always follow protocol – primary, secondary and tertiary survey and never forget the ABCs – Airway, Breathing and Circulation! Usually in trauma situations, we are alerted by an overhead alarm that there is going to be a police drop off or a trauma coming into the bay – in those cases, we have literally seconds to minutes to prepare by putting on full protective gear including lead X-ray vests, full surgical gown, gloves, hair net, face mask and protective eye wear. In moments like those, your adrenaline kicks in and no matter what else is going on, you’re prepared to expect the worst.
In spirit of the holiday season, I wanted to share some of my experiences from my Trauma rotation and friendly reminders of what NOT to do:
- If you’re going to drink alcohol, please be responsible. Don’t drive if intoxicated. Respect your own life and the lives of others around you.
- If you’re going to get into a fight, make sure you don’t get shot or stabbed. You will end up in the trauma bay, have your clothes cut off you and get a rectal exam, plus your wife will come find you and yell at you for being so stupid.
- If you’re running away from your family and plan an extravagant getaway, make sure it doesn’t involve jumping off your third storey balcony – you will get hurt, break both elbows and have minor foot fractures.
- Wear a seatbelt!!!!! I cannot emphasize this more, even if you’re in a taxi or siting in the back seat. That quick step to hear the belt click, can be the difference between life or death.
- If you decide to take drugs (which I strongly advise against), please realize that you cannot fly and jumping off a condo roof onto a concrete floor, will forever change your appearance and no plastic surgery cannot fix that.
- If you’re driving, please don’t hit pedestrians, especially if they’re pregnant and then run away from the scene. We performed an emergency Caesarean section on a lady who was casually crossing the road – thankfully baby and mom survived.
- Lastly, if you do drink alcohol, even if it is at your own home, know your limits. Please be careful and don’t fall down your flight of stairs – you may break your cervical vertebrae and be forever paralyzed. Also in that scenario, if you see someone who looks hurt, cannot be woken up, or doesn’t have a pulse, please call 911 or the emergency number in your country – don’t hesitate, get help.
Be safe, be responsible and happy holidays!
IG: @yashodasingh & @beauty_itsYlife