Thursday, October 18, 2007

A Special Patient (2) - About My Research

This post is a continuation of an earlier post.

This is a conversation between myself and a patient, and it kind of explains the research I am doing since I am giving explanation to the patient in layman term below.

Me: My name is Yang, and I am a student doctor in Anaesthetics department. How are you today?

Maria: Good! But hungry, really hungry.

Me: Hah I am sorry about that... they like to starve the patients, don't they? :) So... you are having a surgery on your back today, and after the surgery you are going to stay in the hospital for a few days.

Maria: Emm hmm...

Me: We are a bit concerned about the pain killer's effects on the patient after the operation. For your operation, you will receive a routine pain killer after the operation. Those are really good drugs, but from our experience, it sometimes cause a bit of obstruction in breathing, especially when you are sleeping. Do you have a bit of snoring when you sleep, by the way?

Maria: Yeah sometimes, especially when I am tired.

Me: Yeah snoring is a kind of partial obstruction too. Those obstruction aren't exactly dangerous, as you would gasp for more air naturally when you don't get enough of it. But after an operation, the obstruction is not good for the recovery because you don't get enough oxygen when things get obstructed. So now, we are having this investigation, or research, to investigate the effect of pain killer on breathing. We kind of identify patients who we think are at a higher risk of obstruction, and since you have a high weight and you do snore, we think that it's good for you to be part of the study.

What we are doing is, if you agree, after the operation, we will put a couple of bands which will go around your chest and the abdomen, a tube which goes below your nose, and a few wires. (see picture) What they will do is to record your breathing at night, and on the second morning, I will take them off at about 8 o'clock, then use the computer to analyse the result. If we do find serious obstruction, we will refer you to a doctor.

And oh yeah, for this study, you will be given one of two types of pain killers after the operation, one is morphine, another is a drug called tramadol. You will be given a button to press which will give you a dose of pain killer when you need it.

So, yeah, that's basically what the research is about. So would you mind to participate in it?
[To be continued...]
[26 Nov: Continued here]

3 comments:

daffodils said...

Hi sounds like the golden hearted doctor Marcus Welby M.D. whose thoroughness and dedication involved him in the lives of all sorts of patients. The TV series was shown in the 70’s and was one of the most popular doctor shows in U.S. television history. That time I was a fledgling schoolgirl and you were not formed yet.Hahaha.
You make a good doctor.

sophisticatedsoul said...

Hah. I don't like the look of the sample picture. Wondering if the patient does. Anyway, stop giving us suspense can?!! :P

youngyew said...

Daffodils: Haha nah, I am not that nice lah. I probably am nice to the patients only because I want them to join the study, I am not sure. See what happens when I become a real doctor. :P

Sophisticatedsoul: Haha the patients sometimes tell me that their family members are shocked to see so many things and wires on them. :P