Tuesday, July 10, 2007


Daily rounds are interesting.

Strangely the general surgery wing that Alasdair is in now is much better about sticking to the rounds schedule than the NICU staff is. Rounds are supposed to take place between 7 & 8am in both areas, and they usually do with our current staff but they often didn't reach our bed until the 9 to 10am hour when we were in the NICU.

They're pretty much the same deal everywhere though. A team of doctors, nurses, therapists and administrators - usually about 6 to 8 strong - walk around and run down the status of each patient. Parents are always invited to sit on rounds so that we can hear what they're saying about our kids. They usually pick one of the most awkward doctors to do most of the speaking (I'm sure it a low-man-on-the-totem sort of lottery) and they tediously list of a whole range of things that I don't understand: his various levels of potassium this or magnesium that, the various potions and tinctures they're administering via i.v., if this or that was detected in his blood or stool, whatever. Some attendees take notes, others don't. Some are obviously checked out and not paying the slightest attention, others are ready to correct any mistakes of the part of Doc Awk. Everybody periodically makes eye contact with the parent(s) and makes one of those 'frown-smiles' or winks or something to make sure we're feeling comfortable and included.

Then at the end they always ask the parents if they have any questions, but we never do. I mean, I've got a fair medical vocabulary. My mother's an RN and my dad's a research scientist with a phd. And I try to absorb this stuff whenever I can. But everything is covered so fast and not just in medical jargon, but in abbreviated med jarg. Even if I might know what some of the substances are that they are referring to are, they have their own little code for each thing that it's mostly undecipherable. I'm not offended or upset that I don't get to understand. Almost the opposite. I enjoy sitting in and watching, but it's certainly merely observational for me. I wouldn't even know where to begin with questions. If I had any they would be about Everything. Sometimes there might be something that I'll want a definition of or something but I generally just save them for when I can just ask one of the nurses.

Anyhow- during today's rounds, they peeked into his diaper and were pleased to see some stool. The diaper needed changing though so the doctor decided to help out.

Then Alasdair struck!

"I try to be nice and change a diaper and I get pissed on," he says.

Sweet. It got all up and down the front of his name-embroidered white coat. I'm sure he's got a million of em too, but the episode was hilarious nonetheless.

Alasdair is continuing to recover well and is feeding very well. He started on breast milk last night overnight and has been very successful with it. He's keeping everything down and eating more and more all the time. Today he started actually breast feeding is is doing relatively well with that too. Despite the somewhat late start it doesn't seem that he has any lingering issues there. His gatorade and lipids intake has been scaled back to about 1tsp/hr, significantly less than before. They may drop them altogether in the next day or so and even remove his PICC line. He did trade in his big i.v. tower for a much smaller one, so it's easier to take him for a walk around the floor now. He weighs 4100 grams, or just about 9 lbs. At this rate we may be able to take him home before the weekend is through!


lisa.houston said...

hey guys! glad to hear you might be going home soon. let us know when we can bring some dinner by. so excited he is doing well! and that he peed on the doctor...makes me happy!

Jamie said...

I was going to leave a comment about how nice it was for Alasdair to say hello to the doc in his own way, but my wife beat me to it.

I'm glad to see he's progressing too.

Angela said...

I know Docs gets pissed off but I wonder how many actually get pissed on?? :P Glad he is taking to BF like a champ. That's magic stuff there! Hope he gets to go home soon!