Monday, April 23, 2007

Shoulda bought him a Corvette...

13 year old kid, white as a ghost, clutching his belly and curled up in the fetal position in the wheelchair. Mom says he was jumping on the trampoline, and when he fell off, hit right across his abdomen right below his ribcage. uh-oh. I'm pretty sure there's a couple of vital organs in that area. Bedside ultrasound showed free fluid in his belly. His blood pressure was slowly coming down and his pulse was slowly going up. His initial labs were fine, but the repeat 30 minutes later showed a decrease in his H&H. Not bad yet, just lower.

We're not a trauma center. We don't have any docs that will admit and follow trauma patients. Anything that looks like it could get ugly goes to the Level I Trauma Center in the Big City 45 minutes away. If it looks like it could get ugly quickly, it goes in the pretty helicopter that lives across the parking lot. This qualified for the pretty helicopter.

Apparently the kid's parents bought him this trampoline because they are in the middle of an ugly divorce. (You know, "Mommy and Daddy still love you; let us prove it by buying you something that will keep you occupied so that you won't notice us ignoring you.") They cost, what, anywhere from $200.00 to $1000.00, right? So after that, the $500.00 ambulance ride, the $2000 to $3000 ED bill from our ED, the $10,000 helicopter ride, and the $5000 to $50,000 bill from the Trauma Center, (depending on what kind of surgery/treatment he ends up needing), best case scenario is about $20,000 and it could be over $100,000 if he ruptured his spleen or has a big ol' liver laceration.

Yup. Shoulda just bought him a Corvette.

1 comment:

Rocky Mountain Medic said...

I love your posts. Your sarcasm is an art form.