Sunday, July 15, 2007

I was stabbed in the chest eleven times

Authors note: I will return to the FPB story in my next blog or so. I just couldn't wait to post this one.

Not with a knife, of course, as that would have made it difficult for me to write this. I was stabbed in the chest with eleven needles. The eleventh of these needles penetrated my sternum creating an opening to the cavity inside full of my bone marrow. The other ten merely pierced the skin assuring direct aim at my sternum. Behold, the Army's emergency IV system, the F.A.S.T 1

It reminds me of something from the movie SAW

Earlier last week, my platoon Sgt. Walked into the Aid Station and addressed me.

"We have a class today," he said with a devious smile. The smile caught my attention because usually our classes never make anyone smile. I asked what it was.

"Sternal IV. We need a volunteer," he said almost giggling with excitement.

"'ll do it."

"Really?"

"Yeah, I'm looking forward to it actually."

A few minutes later my fellow medic specialist Smith decided to chime in on my decision.

"You do realize that you are asking them to take something the size of a ten-penny nail and shove it in your chest?" he asked.

"Yes."

"What if it hurts like a bitch?"

"Oh well."

"You're crazy."

"I know."

I have learned two very important things about pain in all the time I have spent getting smoked in the army.

1. Pain is temporary. No matter how bad it gets take solace in the fact that it can't last forever.
2. You can handle a lot more than you think.

I had the entire procedure filmed and I edited it down to the best parts. Enjoy the show!



Overall the procedure was nearly painless after the initial lidocaine injections. The sternum flush hurts some people but I just felt the fluid go into my chest. Thanks for watching, come back soon.
The aftermath

52 comments:

Guillermo said...

Nice video, but I think you should use "Everybody Hurts" by REM.

shelly said...

At first glance, people are going to think you have an extra nipple.

Guillermo said...

Also, a few amendments:

1a: Pain is temporary, or at least it has been so far.

2a: You can handle a lot more than you think, but it doesn't count if you're in shock.

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