Sunday, August 12, 2012

8 Ball to the side pocket

Boy we are seeing a lot more IV drug abuse lately in addition to the meth.  When the IV drug users are having a hard time finding a vein, they start shooting into their neck right in the little pocket between the heads of the SCM.  When they hit the jugular vein, the crushed up junk goes straight into the heart where it crashes into the heart valves and the bacteria in it grows and before you know it, they have septic endocarditis sending little abcessess everywhere including their brain.  When they stick the needle in too far, they hit their carotid and get a nice little psuedoaneurysm that also gets infected and in enough time will rupture.  No matter what though, they always seen to come in to the ED at about 200am. IV antibiotics, open heart for valve replacement, carotid bypass graft, craniotomy for stealth guided abcess drainages, counselling, treatment program.  Back in 3 months to do it all again, priceless.

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Scab Eaters

We have just been overrun by scab eaters.  We already had quite a few but the number seems to just have exploded.  For those who aren't in the hand sanitized trenches, meth heads get the pops which are little blister zits on their skin.  These scab over and then they pick and eat them because some of the meth is concentrated in the scab.  Our ICUs have closed circuit cameras so we can watch for emergencies and it is amazing how often we catch family members trying to syphon off some fentanyl from the IV drips, but what is worse is how many we see pick off the scabs of the comatose patient and eat them.  These scab eaters are the worse because if you didn't have the camera, you wouldn't know they are scab eaters.  You pass them in the hall and see them in the ICU waiting area where they just cant wait to go back and "be with their loved one".