Heart Beats Real Patients Real Stories Drama, like magnets draw humans with an undeniable pull. Heart Beats is a collection of patient-centered medical dramas, stories of patients in crisis, medical mishaps, emotional turmoil, and ethical dilemmas. Each a highlight from the author's nursing career. Most patients nurses encounter become the white noise in which they practice their profession. Others stand in stark contrast and form memories they carry throughout their lives. Baby Michael's story is one the author cannot forget. Baby Michael's Story I turned the corner to our unit on a soggy January day. A solitary crib intruded on the straight lines of the hall, dwarfing a tiny infant inside, alerting me that our unit was full. Above the crib two IV's. hung, monitors, punctuating the medley of sounds as the day shift began to stir. Station four was an Adult Med-Surg unit, yet when needed, infants and children were admitted. Outside the sky, cold and grey, hung low. When had we last seen the sun? Our small town flanked the foothills of Northern California's Sierra Nevada's but was not high enough to escape the dampening valley fog. A phlebotomist was there for early morning blood draws. Some of the early-bird doctors drank coffee as they sat chatting with the night nurses. An aide emptied catheter bags. Others were charting final nurse's notes. Patients, awakened by pain, anxiously awaited the sound of the medication nurses' shoes padding down the hall. The clatter of the breakfast cart being wheeled off the elevator would awaked any patients still sleeping. In the midst of the cacophony, the infant slept, unaware. Was the baby a really sound sleeper or too sick to respond to the noisy commotion? I hoped not. The report on Michael listed a litany of diagnosis: bilateral pneumonia, Failure to Thrive, bilateral ear infections, an alarmingly high temperature, and if that's not enough, a badly excoriated bottom This was more than I wanted to know. Wow So much for this little guy to conquer. Who could have predicted the many curves his precious life would take? Heart Beats has a Facebook page: Heart Beats. "Like us." We would love to hear from you
Heart Beats: Real Patients Real Stories
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