Wednesday, May 14, 2014

#Dblog Week: The Mental Stuff

In nursing school, I cared for a patient with a leg ulcer. This person did not have diabetes,but they did have impaired circulation to their feet,as a result of cardiac conditions. And the resulting cascade of unfortunate events(leg gashed on trailer hitch) left a wound to the bone,& a subsequent infection of the worst possible kind.(when I looked at that leg ulcer, it was like staring into a "maybe me" future.
The amazing thing to me,is that he felt no pain. This was a wound easily the size of my hand,and redness all around. Inside,there was yellow pus and black eschar(dead tissue) which stuck to the bandage. I had no idea how on earth I was supposed to get that all out of there,but my instructor said that that wasn't the point.(patient has to go to the OR for a wound "vacuum" incision) My job was to rinse it with saline,pack a ton of wound cream in it,and put a bandage on it. And,with her assistance, I did so. (All with no pain on his part) It was a very real and graphic representation of what diabetes can do to a person,and really what nursing is all about.(at one point I thought I was going to vomit from the smell,the nurse just looked at me and said "yep,it takes getting used to." (I did it though,and it was even something that I enjoyed. It was real nursing care.)

(This is my banged shin. I don't have leg neuropathy,so it's delightfully painful. This won't stop me from worrying about infection,though.)
I hate that diabetes steals so many legs,eyes,and kidneys. I hate the smell of a wound ulcer.I hate seeing blue candles. I hate the pain that diabetes causes. I hate that I see myself in an uncertain future. So,so many things I hate..and as much as this is meant to be releasing we could be here all day. Most of all,

I hate that there is no cure.
(The End.)

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