Pediatric Cardiology – Day 13

It was true, the heart function (formerly heart failure)/ transplant service was quite a bit more intense. The first patient we rounded on today still had an open chest from his most recent surgery and a few of them were having their blood pumped via a machine pumping their blood externally from their body (Berlin-Heart) and one was on dialysis. All of this is understandable they most of them were listed for possible or future heart transplant, but it doesn’t make it anymore heartbreaking.

What was encouraging to me though was the spirit of a lot of these kids, some of whom couldn’t even talk (some for development/ age reasons, some because they were on a ventilator). They were so cute and happy and interactive. It’s easy to forget that these are normal kids because as an outsider they are going through so much. It’s easy to pity them and treat them as “sick kids,” instead of just as a regular kids, and while they do need specialized care, they also need all the things another kid at their age needs. They should get to feel normal, even if just for a little bit each day.

We also had a really good discussion during journal club this morning about women and underrepresented minorities in medicine which sparked a pretty lengthy and provocative discussion involving the fellows and faculty (even I was called upon for comment being mistaken for a resident).


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