Thursday, September 29, 2005

A Doc's Life - Memorable Moments 4

Scenario: Emergency Dept in a small suburban hospital (refer to earlier blog on MM1) at the end of a particularly busy shift.

The hospital operator calls the A & E department to inform us of an incoming patient in labour being driven to the hospital by her husband. Note: this hospital has no O & G Department as it had been recently transferred to a larger maternity hospital. There were also no neonatology facilities.

I was the only doctor on duty that had experience in O & G as an intern, and had also done a rotation in the Neonatal ICU as an MO, so tired as I was, I gowned up in preparation for the patient's arrival. Fortunately, we were equipped with an obstetrics kit.

When the car arrived, I found the mother in the backseat, with the baby already delivered, and apparently healthy (to my relief), still attached to mum. Dad was understandably in an anxious state. I had to go into the backseat area to cut the cord so that mum could be transferred into the hospital where I delivered the placenta, and repaired the small perineal tear. Fortunately, I had delivered enough babies during my internship posting to remember how to check the placenta, secure hemostasis and do the repair.

Mother & child were both well, when we later checked with the maternity hospital which they had been transferred to later, and the labour ward staff were apparently very happy that I had done them a "favour" by repairing the tear for them!

As for the car, I have always wondered what Dad did with the amniotic-fluid-soaked backseat...

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