19 July 2009

Liver #2

I went to bed excited because we had consented another patient for our liver transplant study. The OR schedule said they would induce the anesthesia at 10:30am, so I hit the sack just before 2 with my alarm set for 9. At 4:46 my pager goes off. They are inducing now. I head straight to the OR where I find out that this is expected to be a tricky case. I have had 3 hours of sleep and haven't eaten since 8:30pm the previous night. I emerge from the OR at 10:30am, put the samples on ice and head straight to Einsteins for a large coffee and a honey wheat bagel with honey almond smear. Never tasted so amazing.
The surgery itself was longer than the last one I observed, but they didn't have to use any blood products and were able to extubate before sending the patient to the SICU. It speaks to the skills of the surgeons and anesthesiologists in managing the anatomy (surgeons, no blood) and physiology (anesthesiologists, not acidotic).
The patient was awake when I went up to the SICU for the 2 hour post-op samples; the family was there too. It's really kind of fun when you can say you were in there with the patient the whole surgery.
I left the hospital around 2:45pm and was kind of dragging this afternoon, but I just had some coffee and a chocolate chip cookie. Nothing like caffiene and glucose to keep yourself on point.
There's another harvest this afternoon. If they keep the liver in house there's a chance I'll have another surgery this evening, although it looks like the graft is of poor quality, so I may get some sleep instead.

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