Posted by Lieutenant Commander T’Aria (XO / Navigation Officer) in Sickbay – Preparing for intake of wounded, triage etc.
Posted by Ensign Kastarak (Doctor) in Sickbay – Preparing for intake of wounded, triage etc.
Posted by Lieutenant Commander T’Aria (XO / Navigation Officer) in Sickbay – Preparing for intake of wounded, triage etc.
Posted by… suppressed (5) by the Post Ghost! 👻
Doctor Kastarak, newly returned to the Chernov after being away on medical business, found himself in charge of sickbay just hours after his return. Commander T’Aria, the first officer, had instructed him to prepare sickbay for an intake of any wounded people, and also prepare for triage.
Nurse Sutalo was there to assist him. Together, they increased the number of bio-beds, just in case, and made sure that proper medication, at least the kind that would be used on battle wounds, was synthesized and ready to be used. The effect however was that things looked a bit cramped, and both Nurse Sutalo and Kastarak had tripped. Luckily they fixed the hazard. Nurse Sutalo was a good colleague, Kastarak mused, and they fitted well together. They seemed to understand one another.
Once they were ready, Kastarak turned to Sutalo.
“How about a cup of tea while we wait? It might be our last quiet time for a while.”
Sutalo agreed, and the two made some tea. They say down and sipped, not saying anything.
– Kastarak (Ensign, Medical Officer)
OOC: Great post, Richard! I don’t want to steal Travis’ thunder should he have something planned, but I figured… why not put Sickbay to use? ;)
Sickbay’s doors yanked open with a terrible screech, announcing a pair of engineers who nearly mistook the threshold. The first, an Andorian man, clasped his palm against a blue-crusted temple, his stark eyes glazed and his gait disoriented. Hoisting him up was a young human whose diminutive frame was no match for her companion’s considerable stature. “Doc!” She hollered, struggling to keep the Andorian on his feet as she coaxed him another step. “Atillos–” her breath hitched, “–he hit his head real hard. It won’t stop bleeding!”
— NEs Yasmeen Kiran and Rassih ch’Atillos
The tea session was abruptly cut. Sutalo had actually, some minutes before, broken the silence – probably an awkward one on Sutalo’s end – and disclosed some information about himself. He was Efrosian – quite a rare species in Star Fleet by Kastarak’s experience. His eyes were fiercely blue and his hair intensely white, as if afflicted with albinism, if the hair was for a Vulcan or human. Though for Efrosians it was not albinism, it was normal, and coloured hair was extremely rare and in some circles frowned upon. Because Sutalo’s face was clean-shaven, and his cranial ridges less pronounced than for other Efrosians, and with Sutalo’s human-like bed-side demeanour and human-like name (apparently Šutalo was a Croatian name, a culture and language in Earth’s European region, not too far from the Federation capital), Sutalo confided in Kastarak that many assumed that Sutalo was human.
In any case, they did not get any time to discuss cross-species cross-cultural prejudices, as the two engineers barged in. Nurse Sutalo and Kastarak got up quickly, quickly glanced at one another, almost as if telepathically understanding what each one of them was supposed to do. In this case, however, it was not telepathy, they had simply already formed a good working relationship.
Kastarak walked to the Andorian engineer – suddenly Kastarak’s mind was filled with memories of his Andorian roommate at Star Fleet Academy. While this man was not his former friend, they were of the same age, same height, and they were rather similar in most respects. It was surprising, even for Kastarak. Nothing of his thoughts were visible in the way Kastarak handled the situation though.
“Let’s get you to the bio-bed where you can sit down.” he said, while Sutalo helped him move. The patient appeared somewhat conscious, though he was bleeding heavily from the head.
Tightening her grip around Atillos’ waist, Yasmeen clenched her jaw and gingerly draped his arm around the nurse’s shoulders. Her gaze flickered nervously between Kastarak and Sutalo before she ducked and released his weight. Please be okay, she pleaded as she hurried aside.
“Atillos, that’s your name?” asked Sutalo. “I’m Sutalo, nurse here. Doctor Kastarak here and I, we’re gonna try and assess your head injury right now, see how bad it is, stop the bleeding, and then patch you up.” Sutalo turned to Kastarak, waiting for permission to go to Yasmeen Kiran and take a report of what had happened. Kastarak nodded, while tending to the most acute with Ensign ch’Atillos. Kastarak needed to first stop the bleeding, then he needed to assess the trauma on the head. Kastarak’s brain was full of different pathways of what to do depending on what had happened and how bad it was. Was this a topical injury, or could there be a trauma on the brain? Kastarak revised Andorian physiology and neuroanatomy quickly in his head, visualising where the different cortices were located and what their functions would be. Perhaps a neuropsychological assessment would be needed when the most acute in this situation had calmed down.
“Mhm…” Atillos gnarred, pressing his hand firmer against his temple. ‘Head injury’. ‘Bleeding’. ‘Patch up’. Sutalo’s words touched his ears, but he’d little sense of what they meant. Atillos knew only the pain radiating from his temple to his writhing antennae. It sickened him. He seized the biobed and dragged himself into a slouch. “You usually this blurry, Doc?” He asked, slowly dropping his hand. Blood seeped down his temple and stained his skin a deeper shade of blue. Cleaning the area might reveal a meagre, jagged wound marked by the telltale fleshy blue of subcutaneous tissue. It was heavily abraded near its peak and bled profusely. Although his exoskeleton shielded him from brain damage, it failed to protect him from the ails of sustained blood loss and this was especially true for the calcium-deficient Andorian.
Atillos managed a crooked smile and joked, “I hurt myself real good, eh?”
Meanwhile, Sutalo engaged Yasmeen Kiran, to take up a report of what had happened.
“Ensign, I understand this might have been a bit scary to witness. There’s a lot of blood, but your colleague is in good hands. Could you tell me what had happened?”
–– Kastarak (Ensign, physician)
Yasmeen toyed with her sleeve, wrinkles gathering between her eyebrows as Sutalo approached. “Huh?” She hesitated. “Oh. We were, uhm, working on a monitor in Engineering. We have a lot on our plates with the whole ‘teetering-on-the-edge-of-battle’ thing, and we wanted to get this done quick.” She sucked in a breath. “Too quick.”
“He went to dislodge the damaged rely, but it wouldn’t budge. So, he resorted to yanking it.” Kiran shook her head somewhat disapprovingly. “At first, I thought he’d managed to knock himself in the noggin. Then I saw the blood. He stumbled a little, and I realised he still had the relay in his hands. I–I didn’t know such a dull thing could cause so much damage.” She lifted her gaze pleadingly to Sutalo. “Is he going to be okay?”
— Ensigns Atillos and Kiran
Bump for Richard! 22.01.2022
Kastarak cleaned up the wound, stopped the bleeding with the dermal regenerator. He heard Ensign Yasmeen Kiran’s question, though he understood that the question was phrased to Sutalo, Sutalo couldn’t possibly do the necessary diagnosis of the patient while speaking to Kiran. Kastarak was going to raise his voice and explain the situation to Kiran, but quickly came to the realization that Kiran simply wanted reassurance, not an assessment of the diagnosis now. Now was the time for empathy and calming. Sutalo was good at that – he’d help her calm down, arrive at a better cognitive state. As such, he needed to focus on his patient. While the surface wound had now been healed, and the bleeding stopped, there was still some bruising. The tricorder indicated some swelling of the brain too. Could it have been a concussion? For a moment, Kastarak experienced something odd – he couldn’t quite remember exactly how an Andorian brain would handle concussion.
Kastarak decided to revisit Andorian concussion in his own head a bit later. He had picked up on the damaged relay having caused the patient to fall. So Kastarak scanned the heart, to electrocardiographically check for abnormal behaviour of the heart. The tricorder told him all he needed to know about the heart: everything looked normal.
Though Atillos’ condition tempered his callous and presumptuous spirit, it failed to dismiss an iota of doubt from his mind. He squinted, watching through blurred eyes as Kastarak waved some medical wand over his body. Their shared silence unnerved him. Then consumed by the pain radiating from his antennae and temples, Atillos had not discerned much of what Kastarak said… if anything at all. Now, he longed to know the doctor’s observations. Was confusion a common symptom of relay conflicts, or had he managed substantial injury? Rassih took pride in his innate protection, but memories of his exoskeleton refused to make themselves available, offering little reassurance. He needed Kastarak to say something. A simple ‘you’re fine’ would do.
Kastarak returned to the skull – he had recovered the memory. Concussion would be quite similar to humans – dizziness, nausea, feelings of pressure in the head, headache, aversion to light and sound, feeling sluggish or groggy, and confusion. These symptoms could be expressed with heightened aggressions in Andorians, as their emotional regulation mechanisms would be impaired. On the other hand, in some Andorian patients, aggression might be reduced to even below baseline levels, due to increased sluggishness, causing the Andorian to be more docile and accommodating than their cultural mores otherwise would imply. Thus the patient would need to be observed for a few hours, provided triage doesn’t begin before then. In that case, he could probably go back to his bunk.
Kastarak turned to his patient:
Atillos slumped and pressed his fingers to his throbbing temples in a painstaking effort to quell the growing pain. Though he sensed Kastarak’s movement, he lacked the energy to meet his gaze.
“Ensign ch’Atillos, the bleeding has stopped, and I’ve healed the skin wound. I udnerstand you touched a relay. I have checked your internal organs, they appear fine. The relay should not have damaged them. You’ve displayed symptoms of confusion and nausea, so I am concerned with possible injuries to your brain. I should like to keep you in sickbay for a while, to assess whether there has been any damage to your brain from the trauma, for example by way of concussion. How do you feel now?”
Kastarak tried to appear as empathetic as he could, and while he spoke in a soft tone, slow words, he could not help but notice that his words might sound a bit too blunt anyway. Why are all non-Vulcans so sensitive to mere words? It never ceased to confuse him.
Rassih’s antennae writhed, erratic and languid, apprising Kastarak that he was listening. But, it took him a moment to consider how he felt beyond a lethargic ‘okay, I guess?’ Atillos blinked away another bout of nausea and flicked his wrist. “Aside from a splitting headache and overwhelming urge to hurl on this biobed?” He flashed a tart smile to soothe himself. “I’m fine, Doc.”
Meanwhile, Sutalo had spoken a bit with the patient’s colleague. Sutalo now moved toward the biobed, and helped clean up the blood across the patient’s head, neck and shoulders. Kastarak informed him of his assessment and plan.
“But we might go into triage soon…” whispered Sutalo.
“Indeed, but we don’t know. If so, he can go to his own bed, provided someone could stay with him.”
“Wouldn’t we need all hands available?”
“Hm, perhaps. What is it that humans say?” Kastarak paused for a second. “We’ll cross that bridge when we get there.”
The human culture was beautifully rich in metaphors. If Kastarak had to choose one thing he enjoyed about human culture, it was metaphors.
~ Kastarak (Ensign, Doctor)
“Uhm,” Yasmeen interrupted with an apologetic smile, “I can stay with him. My medical expertise is limited to adventure scouts and basic first aid, but I know how to listen. If you tell me what I need to look for, I can watch and comm you if his condition worsens.” She glanced between Kastarak, Sutalo and the sickbay doors. “Besides… if things go south, Atillos will be the least of your concerns.”
— NEnsigns Rissih and Kiran
Ensign Sutalo felt the hairs on his arms stand up from that last thing that Ensign Kiran said. It was scary. What did she mean? It stopped him from being able to immediately answer.
Dr Kastarak noticed, and to spare Sutalo any embarrassment of his three-second emotional overload (Kastarak was certain Sutalo would regain his senses within four–five seconds), he replied to Ensign Kiran:
“Very good. In that case, we can discharge him to you within half an hour. I am going to perform some more tests. Your colleague appears fully conscious, a bit drowsy. Ensure that he does not sleep, and if he starts sleeping, wake him. If he does not wake or have difficulty waking, get him back here. If he pukes, get him back here. If he loses his balance, get him back here.”
“Basically,” interjected Sutalo, now recovered from his sense of foreboding dread, “keep him entertained, play games, talk to each other, keep the brain active. Any sign of something wrong, call us. What the doctor said: don’t let him sleep. Check for balance, puking, mental confusion, difficulty moving, and so on. You can use our com badges for any questions. But you understand, we might be in triage soon. I hear things down on the planet is getting intense. In say, four or five hours, he should be able to eat a glucose-based meal, something very light.”
Sutalo went to a cabinet and brought up an energy pack in a bag. “Half of this in a few hours, then wait a few hours, and he can have the rest. That will be his meal. It’s basically a sugary gel to give energy to the blood, so that the different cells in the blood can help his brain and body recover. Let him drink plenty of water, nothing else.”
At the same time, Kastarak went back to his patient, took some final tests. Bloodpressure and heartrate appeared fine. A speedy cognitive exam showed some sluggishness, but nothing too concerning. Reflexes all fine.
“We will discharge you into the care of Ensign Yasmeen Kiran. Do you consent?”
“It appears you suffered a concussion when you fell and injured your head. Recovery time is usually a day or two, but may take a bit longer. For the next ten hours, you must avoid sleep. Eat light, drink lots of water. Any indication that your symptoms are getting worse, contact us. We have given Ensign Kiran clear instructions for your care.”
“You may access the symptom list and care list on your personal pad. Please check with those at regular intervals. Please return in three days for a check up. You are off duty until then. I will inform your superiors. Do you have any questions?”
– Dr Kastarak (Ensign).
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