Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Clinical Experience: High and Low

Just got back from another great day at my Family Practice preceptor's clinic.

High: Gave my first IM injections today! We walked in and our doc said, "The flu shots have arrived. You're going to immunize me." After a quick briefing, myself, my clinic partner, and I went around the circle giving each other shots. It was kindof bonding, in an endearing sort of way, kindof like drug addicts? ok, probably not. We did use clean needles, of course. I lucked out because I was the only one who got stuck by someone who had done it before; I injected my partner and she injected the doc.

High runner-up: Our doc is great as far as clearing out his clinic so we can get lots of experience and have lots of time with patients. While my clinic partner was in a room interviewing a patient, he had nothing to do for a few mins, so him and I had a really good chat about choosing specialties. I wanted to know more about what radiology is about, since I ranked high on that in an online matching-test toy thingy; I wasn't sure if it was more than just looking at films all day. He told me that the field of interventional radiology involves lots of procedures (yay) but it can be difficult to get into (boo).

Low: I watched our amazing preceptor get a needle stick today. He stabbed his thumb after immunizing an elderly woman who was already in a population at risk for Hep B. "Ow," he said, after he tried to throw out the needle, missed the sharps container, and picked it up again. I feared the worst, and after we left the room, I asked him, "did you just get a needle stick?!" His response: "yep..." I know this is a hazard of the occupation, and took a deep breath and was ready to watch him go through the post-stick procedure, pictured him going to the ER and the like.

What did he actually do about it?


"It didn't draw blood, I just pricked myself a little bit."

Wow. I was shocked. Talk about getting desensitized after years of working in the profession... but hey, he's the doc...

1 comment:

Brad said...

Holy shit...that story about the needle stick is just scary.

What kind of preceptor acts like that anyway? You didn't question him about what he was going to do about it?

The CMAJ had an article a while back about a U of C student who had a needlestick while working in Africa. Very scary and a lesson to all doctors, aspiring doctors, and as is my case, wannabe doctors...