I have a patient whose family has abandoned him.
He's dying. Soon. There was apparently a meeting with the family last week, and they said they wanted him to stay in the hospital until he died, but the hospital said he can't, he has to go to another facility, a nursing home or somewhere that can handle hospice care, there's no more treatment, he's just taking up a bed, it's sad but he can't stay...
And so the family disappeared. They haven't been in to visit him since, they don't answer the phone, they ignored a registered letter, no one can reach them. They've left him to die, and now the hospital has to figure out what to do with him.
I don't know how some people live with themselves, I really don't.
On a brighter note, I learned about a new medical procedure today. We have a patient with an infection that's not healing, the patient is colonized with the infectious bacteria and needs the normal gut flora-- so they're thinking about doing a stool transplant. They said this on rounds and I did a double-take. A what? You're going to do what?
They're going to take a relative's stool, and transplant it.
Oh, via the throat.
They're going to put someone's stool down this guy's throat.
Seriously. This is an actual medical procedure.
We did not learn about this in medical school.
And this was right before lunch, which, of course, made lunch extremely enjoyable.