Stupid Questions

“Uh, hey Wanderer?  You said the super-pube would just easily come out after we deflated the balloon, right?” the nurse asked me from across the hall.

“Yeah, might have to tug a little, but should just be able to remove it and swap in the new one.”  I said.

“It seems like it’s stuck…can you come take a look?”  he said.

Gown up, glove up (isolation rooms are the best!) and head in.  The catheter is in the stoma the nurse looking at me with question marks above his head.  “You have all the saline out of the balloon?”

“Yeah, can’t pull any more back.”  he confirms.

I reach down and grab it, give it a good tug.  Nothing.  Twist it a little around.  Still no dice.  Twist and tug.  It’s not going anywhere.  Short of putting my foot on the patient’s chest and pulling, which probably is a bad idea, we’re not getting it out without expert (read: someone with an MD to take responsibilty) help.  I say as such tot he nurse and suggest he call the intern on duty.

The intern calls back and the nurse explains the situation.  She proceeds to ask, “Well, did you deflate the balloon?”

It’s a good thing it was him and not me.  He was cordial and didn’t roll his eyes too much.  Me, at that point it would have been, “Really?  Do you think I’m that stupid to not deflate the balloon?  Really?  I’m not some novice who’s never done this.  For f*cks sake, give me at least a little credit here!”  That’s why he called, not me.

Be careful of who you ask stupid questions of…

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