A Day in the Life of a Surgeon – Inside Look at a Doctor’s Day

All right, this is gonna be just a little day in the life, a quick video. Let’s start with last night, shall we?

I went to sleep at, like, 11:00. Got a call at 1:30 a.m. There was a trauma one coming in, so I got dressed. Raced to the hospital. It was actually fun because it was 1:30 a.m., and there was nobody on the streets. I put my car, my little S3. It’s got this little sport mode, so the engine gets all highly revved. Suspension drops and all that is fun, so I was racing down to the hospital. Then I had a…I was like, “I’m gonna throw up and show my badge if I get pulled over.” I’ll be like, “It’s a trauma! Get out of my way! I gotta go!” Even though you really shouldn’t be doing that anyway.

I went in, I saw a trauma and took care of him for a couple of hours. That was, like, 3:30 or so. I finished it…I got back home, like, at 4:00. Went back to sleep, woke up at, like, 7:00. Because I was two hours to three hours in the hospital last night and then came in, rounded my patients from basically 8:00-9:30, 10:00. Then went and did a bunch of paperwork and then made phone, or had phone calls, received phone calls. Phone calls from the nurses, other doctors, all that stuff.

Then we didn’t have any clinic. I actually went to clinic, signed a bunch of papers because every week I get all these papers from these nursing homes. They want me to sign off on a patient that’s there that I don’t really see anymore, but they’re like, “Yeah, we did this. Sign off on this.” I’m like, “Okay, whatever. Fine.” So I sign that stuff and then I get a death certificate for somebody I’m supposed to sign. I don’t know who it was. This patient died in the hospital. I’m not even sure…I don’t think my partner saw him.

My point is this sort of stuff happens all the time. You’re just constantly getting paperwork and a lot of it, you don’t even know where it’s coming from or why it’s coming. You have to research all this stuff and figure out, “Should I sign this thing?” Or “should I sign it? Was it an abnormal death? Was it a natural death? Was it a total disaster and if I sign this thing, I’m going to court?” All this stuff.

That’s what I did today.

Then I got an email saying, “Oh, RT America wants to have you on the show tonight at 5:00…6:00 mountain time to talk about the opiod emergency thing. I’m like, “Sweet!” They sent me the questions, and I usually do some research even though we talk about opiods all the time. But I always like to update myself and get statistics in my head so I don’t sound like a complete idiot.

I already have an idea of what I’m gonna say, so I write questions…Answers, what I think I wanna say. Send it back to them, they’re like, “Cool.” They arranged a car to come pick me up because they don’t want me to be late and screw that up. Then I forgot that one of the other general surgeons here asked me yesterday to help them with a case that’s difficult. So I was like, “Yeah, sure, no problem.” I thought the case was gonna be in the morning, but then it turned out it was gonna be in the afternoon. I was like, “Oh (bleep). Maybe it’s gonna be, is it gonna be close to this news cast?” I’m like, “Crap.”

Of course, I’m on trauma. So I have to get somebody else to cover while I go to this studio because I can’t, well…In the studio, I can’t respond to a trauma. I have to get somebody to cover for me and be like, “Yes, I will respond to trauma if you’re not there.” So I was planning on having this guy – because I was doing a favor by going through this case with him – I was gonna have him cover for me, which he usually does when he can.

I called him, and this guy…Now it’s getting late in the day. It’s actually right now…I haven’t done the case yet. He called, he’s like, “Hey, it’s just the 40 minutes. I’m gonna do the case and then I’ll call you.” He was like, “Okay, cool.” I go, “Hey, can you cover for me, like, at 6:00 if I can’t be in the case because I have this interview? I’ll get a PA to help you.”

He was like, “No. That’s not okay. This is a difficult case. You need to be there. You said you’d be there.”

I’m like, “(Bleep).”

That’s sometimes what happens. You get all this cool (bleep) happen at the same time, and you’re constantly managing two things at one time. One of my mentors used to say, “I’m really good at being in two places at one time, but it’s getting tough for me to be at three places at one time.”

That’s how it goes in surgery. You’re always getting – especially trauma and emergency stuff – you’re always getting emergency stuff. Things are changing all- your day is changing all the time. Then you add on another layer of these news interviews ’cause these things happen like that. They call you in the morning. They’re like, “Tonight.”

You’re like, “Okay.”

Then you just say yes – I have another video about this – you just say yes and then you figure out how to do it. Most of the time, it does work out. Most of the time, you can figure out. Every once in a while, you can’t do it. So what I had to do is this time, I did all the research on the thing. I sent the email, I sent my answers, I committed to this operation. The case, surgery’s always off as far as the scheduling. The case is going longer. There’s no way, no way I’m going to be able to do both so I had to cancel the interview. Pretty upset about that.

So I’m sitting here, now, making use of this time because I’m sitting here waiting for this case to go. In the meantime, I’ll make some videos. Actually, let me Google…Look at me working. This is me working.

All right, that’s about that for that video. That’s about that for that video. I just said, “I bet the guys on CNN say that all the time.”

Thank you guys for watching this video.

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