Friday, May 11, 2012

Looney Bin Chronicles Part 1

   Done with my second week of my psych inpatient rotation, and I'm loving it. I still have two weeks more to go after this, but I'm really enjoying it.   The people at this facility are SO CRAZY, and I find myself so fascinated and entertained by them! I get such a kick out of some of the things they say, and it's so interesting to observe them pacing around, talking to walls, staring at you wherever you go, etc.  I also love that they are here all day, so you can pop in and talk to them anytime you want for as long as you want.

   I've found that I have to really watch my countertransference with some patients. Obviously, I love talking with manic patients. Their euphoric, I-love-everything attitude is contagious, and puts me in a great mood. And it doesn't hurt that they often compliment you over and over - hello, who doesn't want to listen to that all day?!  I also like talking with the depressed patients too, but I always feel kinda bummed out after.  And I've found that it can be frustrating talking to them, because they can be so pessimistic about everything, and I know it's because they are sick, but it gets frustrating after a while.

   The first couple of days out on the floor were scary, especially because one of the residents got punched in the neck by an old lady on the first day.  But I was starting to get used to walking around, and getting a little more comfortable with random patients coming up to me, but today changed that.  Today, during rounds, a "code green" was called.  A "code green" is for "behavioral emergencies", like when a patient gets aggressive/assaultive with staff or other patients.  So all the staff/physicians hurried out of our meeting room, and we walked out to the floor where about 6 staff members were holding down a patient on the floor.   The physicians/med students are just supposed to stand around, and the presence of a lot of people is supposed to intimidate the patient, encouraging them to back down.  Apparently, what had happened was a patient unexpectedly reached over the counter of the nurses' station, and punched a lady on staff in the face!  I felt so bad for the poor lady.  I wanted to cry!  The patient was put into seclusion for the rest of the day, and now I am back to being scared of most of the patients, haha.

   One thing that is pretty nice, is that we have our own little med student office.  I mean, it's nothing fancy.  There are four of us crammed into this little closet, but it's our own safe space, and it's nice to have.  One of my fellow med students brought in a bunch of posters, and we all bring snacks in and put them on the "community snack chair".  Although, I'll admit I bring snacks mainly to get them out of my house so I won't eat them all, but hey, I'm still sharing!  And then all the residents come over to our room to steal snacks :P, which I think is funny.
Community snack chair

Yep, I brought my lol-cats calendar for my desk


  1. I worked as a per diem mental healthcare worker for three years before med. school, so I remember code greens! Except, I was one of the people tackling someone to the ground! We didn't really have med. students around, but we kind of used to make fun of the doctors, because they didn't know what to do RE: safety without us around. Oh, how times have changed. This is completely inappropriate and non-PC, but I like it how the elderly people are the feisty ones on your floor-throwing punches to the neck and stuff!

    1. Actually, the old lady was TRYING to punch her in the face, but because the punch was so slow motion, the resident was able to move her face so that only her neck got it!