The worst thing about being a doctor is taking away hope with your words.
You can see it die. If you’re not numbed by repetition, you can feel it, too.
One of my patients had been hit by a car, and he was in the ICU barely hanging onto life. The pressure in his head was so high that it interfered with our ability to manage his other medical problems; everything we did had to be balanced against the intracranial pressure. Our hands were basically tied. We did everything. But he kept on deteriorating.
Today I told his sister that his kidneys had finally failed, joining his liver and his heart. I could see in her eyes that that was the moment she knew he was gone.
He only lasted eight more hours.
Sometimes you fight and you fight and you fight and you fight……
And you still lose.
Here I stand, spent and empty, with nothing more to struggle against. All I can do is watch his sister grieve.