My second week of clinicals was a little less exciting than the first week. I had a 72 yo African American male. He was fun and I had a good time hanging out wit him. Most the time when people are in the hospital it is not a joyous occasion. Births are the only real joyous hospitalizations. Well, my guy had HCC or hepatocellular carcinoma or liver cancer. So he was admitted to the hospital to have a right hepatic lobectomy. They went in and took out 3/4 of his liver. The tumor they removed was ~20cm which is a little more than 7 inches. The medical student who came in on Thursday jokingly said he actually delivered a small baby. The pt got a kick out of that. This type of cancer is not generally followed up with chemo or radiation, so pretty much the treatment for his HCC is complete. The doctors said they got it all, so I suppose this was actually a joyous occasion. The pt said he could tell a big difference. He said that before he could feel his liver protruding from his belly. It was actually pushing on his kidneys and causing him to have trouble urinating also. He said over and over how good he felt.
I did get to remove his catheter, his IV's, and do his discharge education. We talked a lot about his alcohol and tobacco habits and how they would negatively impact his healing and length of life. He said he had no need for any of that anymore, but who knows. Overall, he was a fun guy to talk with. He had been a concrete worker before he retired and laid many of the bridges on I-24. He also has 11 children with his wife. He was a fun guy to take care of last week.
Last week was the most hectic week. We had 3 tests and 4 major projects due in one weeks time. To make things even more difficult, we had all of our tests outside of class time and two of them were on my days off. This made it really hard to get my projects done. The week was so hectic that some people even dropped out last week and some are still thinking about it this week. I'll admit it's tough, but not unconquerable.
Next week is Thanksgiving and I get the whole week off!!