Tuesday, December 8, 2009
My rescue company was on a call with the private ambulance at a convenience store in a near by district. The call was entertaining enough with a drunk patient who could not get their head around how they ended up on the floor. When one of our frequent flyers walks by (without making eye contact). She is well known to ems providers in the neighborhood for shortness of breath calls. She also has a laundry lists of medical problems mostly related to smoking. Today while shopping, she is carrying a medium sized oxygen cylinder (not designed to be a portable) and a oxygen concentrator. She has a nasal cannula in her nose and a nebulizer in her mouth. The neb is completely empty of any albuterol,saline or any other medication. The clincher? She is bying cigarettes! (inner dialogue) So about what time will you be calling for shortness of breath?
Where I work we have a heavy rescue squad that is equipped with all the heavy rescue tools you can think of. Second in line for heavy rescue is our ladder companies. A couple of these units together are capable of some extreme rescues. They were called to the Level 1 trauma center the other day for a man who was being flown in from a nearby town. Apparently this individual thought it was a good idea to use a heavy duty commercial grade bearing race as a cockring. Once the desired affect was achieved it was realized that removal was impossible. I am sure this individual waited a good long time before seeking medical attention. This was possibly occuring since the night before. Small town hospital called for an air ambulance after the small town ER ring cutters didn't make a scratch. Our crews were called to the trauma center after additional failed attempts with manual ring cutters. Hydraulic cutters were not an option, (ouch) so last the FD heard the pt was being prepped for a manual drainage (syringes) procedure that will likely result in scar tissue and varying degrees of dysfunction. Poor bastard.