Wednesday, March 11, 2009


Inpatient internal medicine is hard. And tiring. And scary. A few days ago, I admitted a woman that came in with vomiting. Turns out that in older people (and diabetics) nausea and vomiting is often atypical chest pain. And a couple days later, she had a heart attack while going to the bathroom. Not my cup of tea. I like my medically stable psych patients. I can handle crazy, but acute medical illness, that just makes me want to cry. However, I am learning a lot, and I have much more empathy for my darling husband, who has been oh so patient when I have demanded that he "hurry up and get [his] work done and come home!" while in inpatient internal medicine. Silly me, I really didn't understand. Now I do.

Here are some pictures of happier times. Just last month, I was paid a visit by my lovely friends from grad school. Good times were had by all. Here we are hiking in Malibu:

Along the way, I picked up an unwelcome hitch-hiker:

Hello, I am a tick. On Shannon's belly.

All my medical training came in super handy, because as soon as I noticed the tick attached to my stomach, I turned to the person closest to me and screamed, "get it off!!" I then came to my senses and called Raul. Good thing one of us has some serious medical smarts. He promptly told me to take a picture of the tick (so that he could later determine if it was a breed that carried Lyme Disease) and to pull it off ASAP. The little blonde in the picture above yanked the tick off without even thinking twice. It was pretty gruesome - I had to avert my eyes. She is hard core. After the hike, and the tick incident, we all had fancy cocktails and seafood at a beachside cafe. Yay for good times and good friends!

Oh - and for those of you wondering, no worries about the Lyme's Disease. I would have been at risk if the tick had been attached for >72 hours. And mine was only on there for like 10 minutes. If you do have a tick that's been hanging on for a couple days, pull it out (make sure to get the head) and go to a doctor so you can get yourself some doxycycline.


Anonymous said...

Who's that hottie in the picture with a tick on her belly. She's cute! I wonder if the was the same smarty-pants who figured out her patient was having a heart attack when two other doctors hadn't realized it and then gave her supportive psychotherapy while evryone else was spazzing out? No, it couldn't be the same person. No one is that one except my Shannon!

Lorrel said...

How did you come to notice the tick? Did it make you itch or what? And to think you actually have a picture of that dramatic occasion! When I was in Grade School there was a Japanese girl who had one on her hairline in the back of her head. Noone pulled it out and it got HUGE. I do believe she finally went to a Dr. and he got it out. That was when I was living in the desert in Nevada. I grossed out just looking at it, it had turned yellow as I recall. Oooooh. I'm happy that your friends spent some time with you and that Raul was able to go to New York and see his friend. How did he feel about the little girl?
Much love to you both.

Anonymous said...

that tick freaked me out and I found it impossible to post until now.

Shan, did I ever tell you about the tick on the eye story? It didn't happen to me (thank GOD) but a friend went camping, she came back and flopped on her bed to sleep. She woke up in the morning and couldn't open up her eye. It seems that there was a tick there...imagine the rest.

I just scared myself again.

- Asiyah

P.S. I'm sewing up a shower curtain!! Okay, I'm still pinning but I'll be sewing soon...

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