It’s the end of week 3! The one good thing I can say about S1 is that I’m going to stay so busy that the end of the semester will be here in a heartbeat.
My clinical group and I had an ACLS cardiac arrest code simulation this past Thursday, and I had a BLAST. To prepare, we had to do some “pre-clinical” paperwork – basically answering a bunch of questions on cardiac arrests and BLS/CPR – and complete a quiz on EKGs. When we met in the morning we watched a video detailing how a proper code should be run, we were given a schedule of our day, and then we met with our clinical instructor to dig through our crash cart and learn which supplies were stocked in it.
In addition to several break-out sessions during the day where we discussed airway/breathing, medication, and defibrillation, we ran through a code simulation 4 times. The first two times were before lunch, and even though we had no idea what we were doing I feel like those were our best codes. Of course our patient died both times but we were told that was going to happen so it wasn’t devastating. I was the recorder the first time and the one doing compressions/breathing the second time. Being a recorder is NOT fun! There are so many details to keep track of and everything happens so quickly that I felt like I was missing a lot of information in my role. The second time when I was doing compressions I could not believe how QUICKLY I got tired out! I can see why it is so vital to switch roles every two minutes to prevent exhaustion.
After lunch we went to our breakout sessions, and then came back to do our last two run-throughs. I don’t think our last two codes were as good as the first ones because by that time we were tired, we had eaten, and I think we all felt the call to our beds. 😉 I was the defibrillator the 3rd time and the code leader the 4th time. Being on the defibrillator was fun because I had to interpret the rhythms and keep the code leader informed as to what was going on…and then of course I got to shock the patient every two minutes! Being code leader was awesome but I can see how it’d be SUPER stressful, especially during an actual code. There’s so much to keep track of and be aware of, and then you’re the one in charge of calling out when to give meds and which meds to give, when to shock, etc.
All in all it was a super fantastic learning experience and it as horrible as this sounds, I can’t wait to be involved in a real code. The adrenaline of a code situation is right up my alley!