After a quick, filling breakfast, we were off to the hospital. We joined Dr. Lieberman on his rounds once more before his handing off of the baton to team 2. Although we only spent a day and a half with Dr. Lieberman and the rest of Team Sparta, our parallel vision of the mission to provide the most optimal care for the patients allowed our teams to collaborate with ease.
Following the rounds, we made our way to the OR. Today was Frank T’s turn on the table, a chance at a new life. I never expected it to take two attending surgeons forty-five minutes to insert a foley catheter into in a 13-year-old boy (it has clearly been a while). Where are the nurses? Frank had congenital kyphosis (he was born with a spine that caused him to lean forward). In order to correct this deformity, we had to perform a two-level vertebral column resection to allow for room to straighten him upright with supporting rods and screws. The case went as smoothly as one can hope for- the brief power outages that merely tampered with the lighting didn’t phase the Spine Machine Team. We stitched up around 5p.m. with a successful first case completed.
Surgery was followed with my first experience in sterilization. Hands on would be an understatement. With a bucket of cidex bleach, aprons, eye protection, and layers of rubber gloves, Rob and I hand-washed each instrument using toothbrushes (yes, toothbrushes). It wasn’t the easiest task, but a necessary one for the safety of our patients. We wrapped up the cleaning and left the hospital a little after 6:30p.m.
Tired, yet satisfied with our first day of surgery, we stayed at the resort for a scrumptious buffet dinner and it was off to bed.
Quote of the day-
“How many spine surgeons does it take to put in a foley catheter?” –Nadia