"Doctors make the worst patients"
I am sure this statement is agreed by all. huhu. And, i, myself, ALMOST became a part of the statement. I know i am not a doctor, YET. But, the incident yesterday just scares me how much of it is true.
I had to go and get my blood taken yesterday at NGH. I arrived around 1030, settled my cancelled appointment with Dr Gray, and waited in the waiting room. Number 66. I heard the nurses calling out the number 59. "Ok, this is not so bad. Within a few more minutes i'll be out of here" I grinned happily to myself.
You see, i religiously came here to get my bloods taken once every 3 months. For each visit, i came as early as around 9 am, thinking that if i came early, it will be done and over with soon. But, man was i wrong. Everytime i got there at 9 am, the waiting room will already by packed with more or less 40 patients! And, i ended up having to wait for an hour and a half for my turn! And yesterday, i came around 1030, thinking that it would take ages for me to be called, but alhamdulillah, it turned out to be the other way round. hehe.
Anyway, back to the story that i am about to tell. huhu. I was lost in the world of Tess Gerritsen when i suddenly heard the number 64 called. I had to force myself to close the book and shove it in my handbag. I took out the letter from Dr Gray and the blood form from the brown envelope, and waited tentatively for number 66 to be called. After 2-3 minutes, i heard number 65 being called. From what my school teacher had taught me in primary school, number 66 comes after 65. So, I was about to stand up to get myself ready to go into the blood room when i suddenly heard the number 67 being called instead! Huh? I was dumbfounded. What happened to number 66? Did i not hear it being called or did they just simply forgot that number 66 comes first before 67?!
My face must have looked extremely astonished, that a nurse asked me if there's anything wrong. hahah. I showed to her my number, and said that my number was not called. She looked extremely sorry, and coincidentally, a nursing student walked pass me. She grabbed him, and told him to look after me. He introduced himself as a nursing student and asked for my consent. I was cool with that. I used to be in his shoes, having to practice my venepuncture skills on patients.
So, there i was, sitting on the comfy seat, exposing my arms. Waiting to be punctured. I found myself unconsciously watching what the student nurse is doing. He politely asked for my name and date of birth. After confirming that he had got the right patient, he went straight to my arms. Trying to find the most suitable vein. And he seemed to be satisfied with the vein on my left arm, and i had no objection to that.
After he had put on the armband on my left arm, he immediately reached for the needle and aimed for my vein. I was like, "oh wait, where's the alcohol swab? Why aren't you cleaning my targeted vein with the alcohol swab. What if the bacteria around the area contaminate the needle, and that will cost me infection!" But don't worry, i did not said it out loud. I was just screaming inside my small heart.
And yes, he proceed without applying the alcohol swab. I watched carefully when he poked the needle into my vein. "Sharp scratch", he said. I smiled, recognizing that 'script'. Hehe. He seemed to be confident with what he was doing, until he realized that no blood was actually coming out into the tube. He started to panic and started to enhance the needle further into my vein. I watched 2/3 of the needle making its way into my vein. And i was like, "oh no, stop! The needle has passed my vein, thats why you can't get any blood out. You need to withdraw the needle a bit". And again, no, i did not said it out loud. Huhu. Thankfully, i managed to bit my tongue and kept quiet.
Realizing that no blood is coming out, he had to withdraw the whole needle out of my vein, and redo the whole procedure again. Huhu. Now i know what my patients feel like when i failed to get it on the first try. haha. Certainly NOT a pleasant exprience! hehe. This makes me realize how kind of them to offer themselves to be battered by us, non-experienced medical students. Despite knowing the big risk that they are getting themselves into, they still allow us to do whatever we think is right to them!! How sweet of them.