I’m done with my 2-week ED stint in the country. Everyone’s telling me I got the short end of the stick to be sent all the way up there just for 2 weeks, which is kinda true I suppose. But I prefer to look at the brighter side of things – I had a nice 2-bedroom apartment all to myself, indulged in yummy food & wine, and got more procedural experience in the last 2 weeks than I did in my 10-week rotation last year.
Didn’t have the ‘luxury’ of triage nurses doing IV bungs and sending off bloods unlike in my previous rotation (it was awesome, especially when it was busy, because it meant that the results were ready by the time I saw them), so I had heaps of practice. Also had plenty of opportunities for suturing and plastering, attempted a lumbar puncture (and failed, but so did my consultant so I didn’t feel too bad afterwards), saw a chest tube being put in, pulled out a splinter from underneath a big toe, and decompressed a subungual haematoma. Saw a few paediatric patients, and to be honest, they scared me because I had absolutely no clue what was going on. Overall there was a good mix of cases, and despite the logistical/systemic shortfalls, I enjoyed the nature of the work. I think emergency medicine is really growing on me!