Labour ward duties

As I leave for work I can hear Lakshmi babbling away. She has woken up and her Appu is meant to be looking after her. I resist the temptation to go upstairs and see her before I leave for work. I later find out that he was blissfully asleep when Kavitha went to fetch Lakshmi.

The difference a week makes. A mini heatwave is on its way and the sun is out as I drive to work. For the first time in a long while I don’t need my winter coat. The green fields glisten as the early morning rays catch the grass blades. The street lined with cherry blossom trees are at its full glory. White interspersed with a few pink ones. Last week in the pouring rain this Street looked quite drab. Now with the sparkling full blooms it looks completely different. I listen to Jason Derulo’s ‘tip toe’ on the radio and hum along.

It is my labour ward day. Three elective sections booked for the morning and no trainees. I see the patients and explain the anaesthetic. My first two are straightforward and the last is a big lady. Compared to the olden days, these days the experiences for the mother are much more smoother. Occasionally we do get the odd patient who gets very anxious and drives us crazy. Lying there helpless she may ask for a 101 things all at the same time. We oblige as much as we can. Some say sorry for their behaviour at the end of their ordeal once the procedure is over. Others just take us for granted. None of today’s patients give me grief.

As soon as we finish the second case a midwife runs in to tell us that there is an emergency and we cannot send for our third patient. Emergencies normally go into the next theatre, but there is a case going on there. They wheel a lady in who has an epidural. The epidural is effective and I top it up but it fails to work adequately for the Caesarean section, which cannot wait. I need to put her to sleep. The blood group sample has been rejected and needs to be repeated. Now, it is the obstetrician’s turn to give me grief. She issues a thousand orders. “Tranexamic acid, can you bring the bed up, the abdomen is not relaxed enough”. The list goes on. The baby comes out crying. Now she turns to me and goes “syntocinon, ergometrine, haemabate”. It is never ending. Give me a break. The baby is out safely, the uterus seem contracted, I cannot see any bleeding. There is no need to get stressed. I take care of the mother while the surgery progresses uneventfully. The good news is that the emergency consultant is going to do my third elective case. I wake the patient up and go and get lunch.

In the evening after work, I head to the gym. Over an hour of workout and swimming and I feel good. Back home, things are a bit chaotic. The dinner needs serving, Lakshmi needs to get ready for bed and there are still chores to be done. It is turning into a very long day.

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