04/03/2018

Life In The PICU

I had intended to only do “favorite” blog posts for my core rotations, but after one month in the PICU, there was NO WAY that I was going to NOT share with you lovelies. So…buckle your seat belts. This post is going to be GOOD!

The beautiful thing about my school is that it allows us to have some “free time” and elective space to dive deeper into the specialities that we’re interested in. This was my very first elective rotation (I’ll share more about organizing my core/mandatory rotations in a later post) and there was no doubt in my mind that I wanted to schedule an in-patient pediatric rotation for this month.

I had to travel for it though. I drove six hours from my home in northern Alabama to get to the institution that I would be working for the next four weeks. Florida was beautiful in February. Sunny skies. Beaches. Warm weather. Cool bars. Then…there was the PICU.

First of all this is the stethoscope that I used during my PICU rotation. It is from MDF Instruments. I love it because it has interchangeable parts that allows it to be used on adults, pediatric, and neonatal patients.

And boy oh boy did I see a wide range of patients…two weeks old…two months old…pre-teens…tweens…and almost-too-old-to-be-called-teens. But I LOVED IT! I got there early in the mornings and did some reading (studying for COMLEX Level 2) and then went and rounded on my kiddos. Some days we’d have none (always a good day when no kids are sick enough to be in the PICU)…one…and then some days all of our beds would be full. I saw lots of the “common stuff” like DKA and asthma but I also saw a few rare and uncommon cases for which I had to consult UpToDate for help.

And I will be honest…it’s hard to see kids (innocent and as close to perfect as humanly possible) hooked up to those machines. The ICU isn’t for the faint of heart. But I know my calling is to care for the kids that need my help. My favorite quote from Hippocrates calls all of us that choose medicine to “cure sometimes, treat often, comfort always.” I may not always have the answers (bruh I don’t even have the answer for myself on whether or not I want to do an intensive care fellowship after my pediatric residency) but I will always try my best to comfort.

This past month was a lot of fun. I’m so happy that I had the opportunity to travel and learn so much. I’m grateful to my coordinator who helped pull everything together. I’m grateful to my friends that let me stay with them. And I am soooooo eternally indebted to the doctors and nurses that assisted in my learning during my time in the PICU.

Side note, the mirror seen in the above picture was FIRE and now I need a full length mirror in my bathroom.

Thanks so much for reading lovelies. I’m currently on my OB/GYN rotation so I’ll see you really soon. XX!

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