I wrote some time ago about this netflix series I've been watching, 'Grey's Anatomy'. I rarely watch network tv, but some how got sucked into this one. There are 9 seasons on netflix, and I'm nearing the end, but it's been at times a slog, with watching 2 or 4 episodes in an evening.
Recently I watched one where one of the residents missed a step in a procedure due to confusion and chaos around them. I suddenly remember once when I did the same thing.
It was several decades ago, in an improvised ER, actually a bunker made of sandbags. I had a young man with a deep laceration on his arm, perhaps 4 inches long and over an inch deep, in one place the bone was visible. I put out the tray and gloved up, in front of me I had all the necessary implements, syringe with lidocaine, scissors, kelly clamps, sutures with a couple kinds of thread.
I decided to use a mattress suture, one where an anastomosis of both the sub-cutaneous and the derma can be closed with the same stitch.
I frankly don't remember whether or not the young Marine had been given any pain meds, I doubt that he had. As I was getting ready to start all hell broke loose. Helicopters came in carrying several wounded soldiers. I was busy for several minutes doing triage, trying to give order to something very disorderly.
I got back to the Marine with the laceration, sat down and started suturing. With all the noise and activity around, I dimly noticed the Marine was visibly wincing and jerking with each suture. I kept on, I'd guess it took several minutes to finish and put on a dressing. Then I cleared off the tray, and saw it....the unused syringe with 10ml of 1% lidocaine under a dressing. I'd just done a fairly major repair of a laceration without even giving the poor kid a bullet to bite.
I promise this'll be the last medical post for a while, spring is trying to get here, and there are fish in the river.