Thursday, 30 April 2009
Tuesday, 28 April 2009
Monday, 27 April 2009
Sunday, 26 April 2009
Saturday, 25 April 2009
Thursday, 23 April 2009
"HE'S UNDER THE CAR! HE'S UNDER THE CAR! DO SOMETHING! WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR???"
I grab my equipment and run over to the estate car on the side of the road. And there he is. His motorcycle is nowhere to be seen. At first all I see is a leg sticking out from under the car. His other leg is under the wheel. There is so much blood I start to wonder where it's all coming from. I take a proper look under the car, and it takes me very little time to realise that this patient is beyond help. There is nothing I or anyone could do. Apart from the fact that he is under the car and I can't get to him properly. Even if I could get to him, there was nothing left that could be done. It was clear he was not breathing. Cardiac arrest post traumatic injury equals practically no chance of survival.
After a few minutes a crew turns up. I tell them of my findings, and in a last-ditch attempt, maybe a clutching at straws, we remove his boot to check for a pulse in his foot. We find none.
Eventually the Fire Brigade lifted the car and our fears and suspicions were clearly confirmed. The driver had in the meantime run away from the scene. (I hope when they catch him they... actually, I don't know what I hope...)
All the while, the man who pulled me out the car is walking about, clearly distressed. I discover that the man under the car is his friend. They were both on their way home from the office together. Both riding bikes. And his friend was under this car. I'm sure he realised that he was dead. I'm sure that he knew there was nothing I could do. But he clearly couldn't accept it. He must have yelled at me at least a dozen times before the crew turned up that I should be doing something.
I wish there was something I could have done.
I wish I could have found the way to tell him what he already knew in a way that didn't bring both of us to the verge of tears.
Sometimes I hate my job.
Wednesday, 22 April 2009
I'd been busy all shift on the FRU, and it was beginning to look like I wouldn't get my rest-break. That could mean going home a little early for a change. It did, however, mean that I wasn't getting back to station for my food either... Finally, after calls as varied as an RTA with 6 people and only me to send (admittedly, and luckily, only two needed treatment) to an asthma attack, to a man vomiting blood (probably self inflicted due to alcohol abuse) and various others, I was allowed to have a break. I stopped, had something to eat, and waited...
Just when you thought that Jonah had left the building...
2 minutes after the end of my break, my phone goes, as does the station phone activating one of the ambulances. I yell "see you there" and go to see what the call is. The call is given as a stabbing. Police on scene. Maybe. Control calls me to say "hang back a little until we confirm that the police really are there, but just so you know, we've had reports that it's a lunatic with a machete". Nice... I hide around the corner, until the ambulance pulls along side and says that they've had confirmation that police are there. We arrive on scene together.
There are approximately 8 police cars. That's never a good sign. There are some pale looking police officers. Not a good omen either. There are some other officers making frantic windmill impressions. Definitely bad news. We arrive to find a man lying in the street, unresponsive. There's a bandage on his head and one on his arm. Both just placed on top, not tied down, which makes it a little easier for us to take a look.
Lunatic with a machete is long gone, but his "handiwork" is plain for all to see. There's a massive injury to the face, from the cheek to the temple. Sliced clean through to the bone, in the places where there is bone. And an arterial bleed. From the head. As there are three of us on scene things happen in a bit of blur of activity. There's bandaging to be done, we need to immobilise the patient as we have to suspect a spinal injury as well. We need to check for other injuries, especially to the front and back of his torso. We find none. He needs IV fluids, and he needs to be in hospital.
With trauma calls it's especially important to remember to do things in order. There's no point stopping the bleeding, which is what normally jumps out at you, if the patient can't breath. ABC. Airway, Breathing, Circulation. He was maintaining his own airway, and breathing on his own with no problems. So we could deal with the C problems. We had the head injury bandaged and moved to his arm as well. This also had a large laceration. All through all the skin, fat, muscle. The bone was again clearly visible, but at least no arterial bleed this time. We took him to the nearest trauma centre, and left him in the care of the staff there.
This man was clearly not as lucky as the soldier in Afghanistan. It does make me wonder once again though, which is the country with more problems...
Monday, 20 April 2009
Monday, 13 April 2009
Wednesday, 8 April 2009
Unfortunately my Dad had to be on the receiving end of the services of the Ambulance Service, with a nasty LVF. As I can't find the Ambulance paperwork to locate the crew of the FRU and ambulance in order to write you a personal letter, this will have to suffice for now.
So to the Essex Ambulance Service FRU and crew who were called out at about 4.30 yesterday morning - thank you.
And he's doing OK. Just waiting to be evicted from his local hospital...