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Residents Day: Bethany Cohen, MD

January 1 2012
Bethany Cohen

This New Year’s Eve was definitely different than any other I have had before. New Year’s Eve was the last night of my 2 weeks on night float, so I had spent the day sleeping. I woke up an hour earlier than usual, at 3:30 PM, so that I could get ready for work and for dinner. Instead of our typical dinner together, my husband and I met up with my in-laws for an early New Year’s celebration at Houlihan’s. We talked about the challenges our family had faced in 2011 and all of our hopes for 2012, including our plans for a trip to Florida. After enjoying dinner, I went to the hospital at 6 PM for the medicine team sign out.

The night was running fairly smoothly with almost no calls from the nursing staff and I had had one simple admission early in the night. Jonathon Goit had stopped by the conference room before his ER shift, and had actually run out to WalMart to grab a bottle of sparkling grape juice so that all of the residents in the hospital overnight could celebrate the New Year together! Around 11:30 PM I was getting ready to turn on the TV to watch the ball drop when the Emergency Department called for an admission of a patient with a CHF exacerbation. At that point I was sure that I would miss ringing in the New Year, but I managed to get my full history and physical with 1 minute left to spare, and I made it back to the resident lounge in time to count down the final 10 seconds with Marin. We went to the fridge to grab the sparkling grape juice to find the Laura Wulff had also been kind enough to drop off a non-alcoholic Raspberry spumante for us to enjoy!

On the weekends the night and day shift split the medicine team for morning rounding, and that morning I had 7 patients to see before 7 AM. I had just finished rounding on my 2 ICU patients when a code blue was called. An elderly patient had suddenly become unresponsive with limited respiratory effort and bradycardia which became PEA. Thankfully, a normal sinus rhythm had been restored before the patient’s granddaughter arrived. We had been with the patient for about an hour at that point, and at 4:30 AM I was really grateful for the end of life training Loyola had made us participate in. I spent another 20 minutes talking with the granddaughter and making sure that she understood the events of the night and the patient’s prognosis. At that point, Marin took over monitoring the patient and waiting for other family members to arrive so I could finish rounding.

From 5:20 to 7 AM, I checked in on my 5 other patients and finished writing all of their notes so that I could leave after presenting the two new patients and signing out the rest of the medicine team I was responsible for. After we were done with morning rounds, I drove to Starbucks to pick up breakfast for my husband and returned to my house. I stayed up to watch an episode of That 70’s Show on Netflix and went to bed.

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