Monday, August 28, 2017
Saved by the ECG
Sunday, August 27, 2017
Satay without peanut sauce;
English breakfast without bacon;
Nasi lemak without sambal;
Cendol without gula melaka;
ABC without red beans...
Saturday, August 26, 2017
My father's son
My father used to work with the British army in Singapore. We were quite financially well off. Staying in the clan's home, we had 2 rooms & we were the 1st family with a TV. We eventually moved out to our own home.
When the Brits withdrew, he was laid off. We tightened our belts during this difficult period. He then worked for a while with a timber company in Temerloh (Pahang) & then Paka (Trengganu), which means he was away from home a lot. When the company closed down, he came back & became a driving instructor. I still mention with much pride that I was taught by him.
He's always been thrifty in his spending. In fact, when we go to the supermarket, he'll just wait outside because he said he has nothing to buy while we filled our trolley with groceries.
I still retained that DNA. Which is why I was ecstatic when I found this ......
After all, I AM my father's son. I think I'll wear this to church tomorrow.
Friday, August 25, 2017
my daughter says she wants to do internal medicine. either that, or cancer research.
i feel it's good to have an ambition. at least, there's something to look forward, and work towards, to. an objective to focus & channel one's energy & time.
but the wise man has this to say....
Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails. (prov 19:21)
i should know. after all i wanted to be a bus conductor, and then an aviation engineer.
see how i turned out.
Thursday, August 24, 2017
1st time on a plane
Wednesday, August 23, 2017
I love this class USSB. Upper Six Science B.
Marvelous Chemistry, Biology, and General Paper teachers, and special mention to the late Mr GV Pillai, Physics teacher. I did apply to be an engineer, you know, but I digress.
And my beloved classmates who were comrade-in-arms in work & play.
I'd like to think you've all impacted my life as much as I have yours.
Tuesday, August 22, 2017
Never been overseas
Return to Innocence
Monday, August 21, 2017
Right time, right place.
It's often proclaimed that wherever we are, whatever we do, it's for a reason. Like if we had not gone there, then ...... or, If we hadn't done that, then...........
If you are religious, you'd feel it's even like a divine decree.
Last Wednesday, I was at such a place and time. My scheduled case didn't not take place & at 4pm, I was just walking pass the surgical ward, getting ready to change & go off.
I got an urgent call from that ward that one of the patients I had anaesthesied earlier that morning was having a convulsion & was not conscious.
I was by the bedside before you could say Code Blue. With the help of the nurses, we proceeded to do CPR. Although the heart momentarily stopped beating, we managed to restart it because prompt action was instituted early, which is the essence of CPR anyway.
The stay in ICU was quite stormy, and we weren't sure if the patient has suffered brain damage because he remained unconscious for 2 days after that. But on the 3rd day, as we scheduled him for CT scan of the brain, he suddenly opened his eyes & started to respond to instructions.
All I could say was Hallelujah. It felt like a religious decree that I was at that place at that time.
The patient was discharged very much alive from hospital today.
Wednesday, August 16, 2017
Falling below expectation
In a way, looking back, I felt I was indifferent at best & negligent at worst.
The nurse called me last night about a late admission. This patient was supposed to have surgery this afternoon & I would usually see & assess on the morning of the surgery. Not knowing any detail of this patient, I refrained from giving any medical advice over the phone, lest it was inappropriate. Besides, once I start getting involved, I know the nurses will call me for every discomfort the patient may complain of throughout the night.
Therein lies my predicament. I am a doctor and yet I want a good nite of uninterrupted sleep, because I am not on call.
At my age, I dislike, & try to avoid, on-call duties, because I am on my worst behaviour without sleep.
Tuesday, August 08, 2017
Grumpy old men
Sunday, August 06, 2017
The elective posting
It's time for the daughter to pick the hospital elective posting for next year.
Her 1st choice is a popular district hospital 160km away because there are more hands-on & practical experiences there. She will have to find new accommodation in the district & may be on the road often.
The 2nd is the city hospital only 12km away & 25 mins by train. On top of that, she already lives near the train station. For logistic reasons, being a foreign student, I much preferred she remained in the city.
As it turned out, she was allotted the city hospital. I was glad. And I forgot to mention that had she been posted to the district, she planned on getting a car & driving the 320 km round trip every week.
Thursday, August 03, 2017
1st Christmas in the UK
i was on-call & the 1st case for the day was a 70+ year old lady for a DHS insertion, a procedure to fix a broken hip. the standard anaesthetic technique in that hospital was to give a general anaesthetic supplemented with a local anaesthetic (epidural).
the general anaesthetic went smoothly but i had some difficulty with the lumbar epidural, resulting in the accidental puncture of the dura. instead of abandoning the epidural & just have the general anaesthetic, i proceeded against better judgement to attempt again at a different (higher) level. after administrating the full 20mls of the local anaesthetic, true to form, the blood pressure crashed & the patient heart stopped. resuscitation was unsuccessful.
i can't tell you how angry i was with myself for such a novice mistake. maybe i was indifferent, maybe i was over-confident but i will never, ever forget how a lapse in concentration resulted in this unnecessary death. one good thing that came out of this was the unwavering support the consultants gave me, even at the inquiry for peri-operative morbidity and mortality.
i want to believe this made me a better doctor today & that death was not in vain.
Tuesday, August 01, 2017
Having worked at the hospital for 25 years, from a shoplot practice to a new independent medical centre, and then to be part of a major healthcare chain, you'd think she'd be missed when she finally retires.
Truth be told, I can't remember the last time I have worked with a nurse so obnoxious, I just dread if we had to assist surgery in the same theatre.
I won't miss her. Seriously. Honestly.