The strange world of sick little people in a developing country. Peds is a whole new world for me. The unit is the size of your living room, crammed with 12 cribs, and 1-2 parents, grandparents, sisters, friends, cousins, whoever. PLUS doctors, nurses, interns, externs, attendings, residents. So. Many. People. In. Your. Living. Room.
The babes are adorable. But if you want to know what's wrong with them, you have to decipher the chart, as it is in French. One of the biggest problems I've seen is hydrocephalus. It means fluid is on the brain.
We have about 4-5 babies in Peds with this illness. You don't see this in the developing world because it is diagnosed very early and a shunt is placed that drains the fluid from the brain to the abdomen. A team (from Europe) came in today to the hospital to perform this very surgery. They came into the unit, examined babies and measures heads. I don't know how many they will be able to do before they leave. There was a whole line in the parking lot, full of parents with hydrocephalus kids, waiting to be se by the surgeon.
I had a patient, 10 year old girl, who fell out of a tree and broke her radius (forearm). She never got it set and it eventually became so infected that she came into the hospital for multiple surgeries and debridement. The stigma for an amputee in Haiti is worse than a useless limb so they will try to save it as much as possible. I watched the local wound nurse do her dressing change today and almost vomited. There is only one layer of skin and bone left of her forearm. She is one tough chick.
By the end of my day, I was thinking "OHHH MAAA GAAAA STOP CRYING!" Peds is truly a different world than adult nursing. Such a wonderful day of challenges and new experiences and stories!