Sunday, October 18, 2009

Pediatrics and the Swine Flu

I now have one week of pediatrics under my belt, and I have to say my life is pretty dang sweet right now. We start at 9 am and are done sometime between 5-5:30. Oh yeah, and depending on how the morning goes...I get between an hour and 1.5 hours for lunch. And because the clinic is so close to home, I get to spend my lunch at home. It's great. Jake's actually been lucky enough to have a wife who can cook for him at night. I believe I have cooked almost every night, which is amazing! What else...I get my own tablet/pc to use. It's so much better than flipping through paper charts.

So what do I do in pediatrics? See a bunch of healthy kids for their well child exams and a bunch of sick kids. My favorite well child exams are the babies and the 3 year old kids. I love the babies because they are fun to play with, although as soon as I pull out the otoscope (look in ears) they begin to wail. The 3 year old kids just crack me up. They are into everything, bounce around the room and manage to tell you everything all at once. I'm just glad I get to leave them to their parents.

This clinic in particular has a wealthier and more diverse group of patients than I am accustomed to. For example, in the last week I have had patients from Russia, England, and Israel. I also have had two sets of lesbian moms (one set adopted the child and the other set used a sperm donor, used one mom's eggs and the other mom's uterus. Did you get that?). I'm also pretty happy with the acceptance that I have received from the parents. Typically, the wealthier the family, the less likely they are to allow you to touch their child. Now I know this isn't a black/white situation, but it tends to follow this path. However, I have had zero problems with parents, in fact, these parents are even more interested in me and my education process.

Alright, what everyone is waiting for...the swine flu. To be honest, I'm pretty sick of hearing people FREAK THE HECK OUT over it. And I also believe, that many people do not have all the facts. When people say the doctor says they have the swine flu, it is a most likely situation. For example, in the state of Colorado, there is only one lab in the entire state that is testing for the swine flu. The only places that are taking swabs from patients and sending it to this state lab are hospitals. You have to be an admitted inpatient to receive this test. So why are the doctors saying that you have the swine flu? Because that is what is currently circulating. If you have the correct symptoms (by the way, you need a fever for this diagnosis) then you are being diagnosed with the flu, probably the swine flu. Again, for everyone freaking out, I have been exposed to about 10-15 patients a day with this. I have yet to get it (hopefully I didn't just jinx myself). Wash your hands....a lot. Wipe down the grocery cart at the store. Get the flu and swine flu shot. For those of you with little babies at home, the CDC is advising you to get the shot not the nasal mist. I really encourage everyone to read the CDC's website for information. And before anyone gets huffy puffy at me about this, I am aware that people with low immune systems are more likely to have complications.

Oh yeah one more thing...the recommendations on when to go back to work/school are 24 hours without a fever without Ibuprofen/tylenol.

Ok, I think that's it.

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