I spoke not long ago about a Medic that got under my skin for not wanting to complete a secondary assessment on a patient.
On a recent call he had me frustrated again, for almost the opposite reason.
55 year old male, chest pain, diaphoretic, history, pretty much every patient you got during your cardiology portion of Paramedic School. Lead II and III look fine but of course we’re placing the 12 lead and opening up the ASA as the wife gives us a better idea of his history. Out of the corner of my eye as I check the BP I see Lost Cause (LC) approaching and his step slows as he sees me.
A report is given as I fish out the nitro and prep a spray.
“Does he want to go?” LC asks casually.
“Not exactly, but we haven’t ruled out an acute MI here, so let’s play it safe, shall we?” I respond as the 12 lead analyzes the pronounced ST elevations in V2 V3 and V4. I know what the strip will say before it finishes printing.
As the O2 is transferred to the Ambulance the patient is beginning to calm and asks me what I saw on the ECG. Before I could answer, LC jumps in and says one of my least favorite things. If you’ve read anything here you know what he’s about to say and you’re proud of me for not screaming.
“Well, Sir, we don’t diagnose, we’re just Paramedics, you’ll need a Doctor to diagnose your problem.”
“Some parts of your heart are having trouble being their best. It’s the first sign of trouble, but we caught it in time.” Was my swift response, pointing out that the medicine we had administered had cleared the pain, his color was back and he wasn’t sweating through his shirt anymore.
“Thank you,” the patient says and is loaded into the ambulance after being wheeled by silent LC and the ambulance EMT, me also silent nearby.