Last Week, I scrubbed in on a Mitral Valve Replacement. It was a repeat procedure for a failed prosthetic valve. When you have to repeat a surgery like that, you have to prepare for the most difficult time of your life because a previous operation usually means adhesions will occur. Adhesions simply mean that tissues and organs stick to each other. And that is exactly what happened; The heart of this patient had adhered to the sternum (Breast Bone) so while sawing through the sternum to get into the chest cavity, the saw tore right through the Right Atrium. So, blood started gushing out of the chest like Old Faithful. Imagine the horror!
I literally freaked out; Like I screamed and didn’t observe any form of chill. At this point, I knew that cardio thoracic surgery wasn’t my thing because you require both a Lion’s heart and a Lady’s hands. The lead surgeon was so calm that it was like he wasn’t seeing what I was seeing. He simply placed his hands on the chest, applied two clamps and the gushing reduced. Before I knew what was happening, I found myself applying pressure to the chest while the surgeons were trying to gain Femoral access to connect the patient to the Heart-Lung Machine so as to bypass the heart.
I stood there applying pressure for like an hour and a half. I was like; “Na who send me message?!”
After all became a little bit calm, I became the suction and retraction bitch. Do you know how difficult it is to suction when old faithful is busy turning up? It’ll look like you’re not doing anything.
The operation lasted from about 11am to 9pm but trust me, I escaped at around 6pm. I cannot come and go and die.
This experience showed me that;
1. Cardio Thoracic surgery is definitely not for me.
2. I may have lady hands but I have a pussy’s heart.
3. I don’t have that Christina Yang factor.
Most likely General Surgery where only a careless surgeon will puncture the aorta. I should be able to handle that unlike this fragile cardio surgery where any small mistake will take you eons to fix. Besides, cardio procedures last too long and I’m not trying to have a 90 year old back by the time I’m 50!