August 22, 2016

From Trauma to ENT

I can't remember if I already blogged about how I'm switching from an inpatient Trauma job to an outpatient otolaryngology job. It was an interesting experience, as as over the course of multiple months, I had the impression multiple times that I needed to consider taking a part-time job in an ear nose throat clinic. I began thinking I should talk to a certain Doctor. The thought was on repeat. You should talk to Dr. so-and-so and see if he or any of his partners is hiring. So, I waited until he took a week of trauma call, but I didn't see him, so at the end of the week I sent him a text message asking if he or any of his partners was hiring. He said he would check with them and get back with me. Often times in Dr. speak this means "See you never." But this time he sent me a text a day or two later telling me that one of his partners wanted to meet with me. I met with the partner the following day, and left the office with a new job. A part-time job that provided health insurance. A rarity in clinical practice as a nurse practitioner. After accepting the position and telling people about who I was going to work for, I have heard nothing but good things. The OR nurses say he's good in surgery. The PA US nurses say he's nice to them. The patients and families love him. The emergency department loves him when he's on call. It is rare to find a physician with all of these qualities. Additionally, I have never felt quite so directed toward a particular position at work, and I have this overwhelming sense of calm and certainty that I am moving in the direction that my Heavenly Father wants me to. It's a nice feeling.

Moving from Trauma to ENT is not only a change of pace, but a whole new canon to learn. I have always loved learning, and as I lay on the couch recovering from surgery, I've been learning more and more about otolaryngology. Today while studying tympanic membrane (eardrum) anatomy, I looked at pictures of ruptured eardrums. I found it ironic that after going from trauma: broken femurs, open fractures, facial trauma and many other graphic injuries, I  cringed at every picture of a ruptured eardrum.  I guess I was imagining how bad it would hurt? It reminded me of how little tolerance I have for pictures or videos of violence, gore or injuries. I think it must be that when I have a patient in front of me there is a task at hand, but when I'm looking at pictures I just imagine how bad that would hurt if it happened to me. I can stomach most things in the trauma bay, but show my a picture of a broken arm, and I'm highly disturbed. 

The great news is that if nothing else I will now have empathy for people who have what appeared to be terribly painful ruptured eardrums, and at best, I have a lot of learning ahead of me, and I'm excited to see where my path takes me. 

1 comment:

  1. I think the pain is worse prior to TM rupture. That might help these thoughts!