The Young Amputee

  • Length: 1010 words (2.9 double-spaced pages)
  • Rating: Excellent
Open Document

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Text Preview

More ↓

Continue reading...

Open Document

"The Young Amputee"

The time is 9:32 p.m. here at St. Joe Medical Center where I am a nurse assistant on the orthopedic floor. I have just been asked to assist a nurse with a dressing change. This isn’t just changing a band-aid to a scratch on a knee type of dressing change. I am assisting in a dressing change to a thirty-year old female named Kathy that was hit by a car as a pedestrian. Kathy was pronounced dead at the scene of the accident and later revived in the emergency room. Doctors were able to save Kathy, but not her left leg. She is now a below the knee amputee.

To prepare my self for this task, I have to wear protective clothes which consists of: a white hair net, an airtight orange facial mask that looks like a duck bill, a long sleeve bright yellow lab coat, rubber gloves and blue foot protectors. This gorgeous ensemble will protect Kathy and myself from infection. Did I mention that I look like an over-grown duck? As I open the door and enter Kathy’s room, what smells to be the odor of a dead and rotting animal carcass consumes my lungs. Tears are beginning to well up in my eyes and my stomach is feeling like it is going to erupt. Kathy has a severe infection in the remainder of her leg.

What I see before me is a beautiful young girl laying flat on her back, fast asleep in her bed. I pull the sheet back from across her body and to my surprise what is left of Kathy’s leg has no bandages covering it. Broken bones, red muscles, blue veins, white tendons and yellowish fat cells are visible. Her leg is left open because there isn’t enough skin to close wound. There is also a gaping hole the width of a soda can and about eight inches deep running down next to the tibia and fibia bones in the middle of her leg. It looks as if someone slapped a few pounds of raw ground beef in the middle of her bed where the rest of her leg should be.

The nurse tells me that my only job is to hold up in the air what is left of Kathy’s leg so she can debreed the inside of her leg. This isn’t going to be easy because Kathy’s leg weighs at least seventy-five pounds.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

How to Cite this Page

MLA Citation:
"The Young Amputee." 19 Jun 2018
Title Length Color Rating  
Essay on Becoming an Amputee During Adolescence – A Grieving Period - This paper will firstly discuss common areas of grief experienced by an adolescent and how this grief can disrupt the developmental stage. Secondly, I will explore the theoretical principals of William Worden. I will briefly outline his normal grief behaviours then explain the four tasks of mourning which are the following: accepting the reality of the loss, working through the pain of the grief, adjusting to an environment in which the deceased is missing, and emotionally relocating the deceased and move on with life....   [tags: Grief, Worden, amputee]
:: 6 Works Cited
1037 words
(3 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Guidance of Young Children Essay - 1. Developmentally appropriate practice as defined by NAEYC is a “framework of principles and guidelines for best practice in the care and education of young children, birth through age 8. Children cannot perform tasks that they are not yet developmentally capable of doing and teachers have to be aware of this. One would not expect a one year old child to be able to write their name, not only because they are not cognitively able to understand this task, but also because their fine motor skills have not developed enough to hold a writing instrument....   [tags: Teaching Young Children]
:: 2 Works Cited
1193 words
(3.4 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Perspectives of the Characters in The Young Housewife Essay - Perspectives of the Characters in The Young Housewife From the first stanza we decipher that there is a young housewife moving about her husbands house in negligee. Some important questions that come to my mind are: Is she alone?, and why is she moving. The answer to both of these questions we do not know. Is this young housewife dancing around the house in her negligee because her and her husband had a wonderfully romantic night, or is she merely shuffling along performing her wifely chores and duties....   [tags: Young Housewife Essays] 531 words
(1.5 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Essay on A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man - A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man The mind wanders, on occasion, through many processions of thought. When at the beginning of this text, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man by James Joyce, I found it difficult to follow young Stephen's meandering thoughts with any semblance of comprehension until I finished reading the novel. I then began to research the novel and Joyce and realized the significance of these seemingly random thoughts. These are the thoughts of a budding artist in infancy....   [tags: Portrait Artist Young Man] 417 words
(1.2 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Clarissa or The History of a Young Lady Essay - Clarissa or The History of a Young Lady   In the Johnson age there are many popular writers.  One of these authors is Samuel Richardson, who was a novelist.  His most popular novels were Pamela and Clarissa, which are both constructed of a series of letters.  Clarissa, however, was regarded as one of his most popular European novels.  "His masterpiece, Clarissa, or the History of a Young Lady, one of the greatest European novels, was published in 1747-8" (Richardson, 1).   When Richardson wrote Clarissa his intention was to write a novel of a series of letters that were written by an unskilled author.  This book contains 537 letters written by various characters in the novel.  B...   [tags: Clarissa History of a Young Lady] 892 words
(2.5 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man Essay example - A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man Silence, exile, and cunning."- these are weapons Stephen Dedalus chooses in A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man. And these, too, were weapons that its author, James Joyce, used against a hostile world. Like his fictional hero, Stephen, the young Joyce felt stifled by the narrow interests, religious pressures, and political squabbles of turn-of-the-century Ireland. In 1904, when he was twenty-two, he left his family, the Roman Catholic Church, and the "dull torpor" of Dublin for the European continent to become a writer....   [tags: A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man] 2430 words
(6.9 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man Essay - A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man James Joyce's A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man is considered to be one of the finest works of literature of all time. Herbert Gorman, an author from the early twentieth century, stated that "so profound and beautiful and convincing a book is part of the lasting literature of our age," and with good reason. The main character of the novel, Stephen Dedalus, is a complex and dynamic youth, and one who undergoes vast changes during the course of his life....   [tags: Portrait Artist Young Man] 913 words
(2.6 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Essay about The Allegory of Young Goodman Brown - The Allegory of Young Goodman Brown      Nathaniel Hawthorne’s “Young Goodman Brown” is an allegory, though an allegory with deficiencies, with tensions existing between the reader and the story.   Peter Conn in “Finding a Voice in an New Nation” explains Hawthorne’s style of allegorizing and how it creates unwanted tensions for the reader:   He once planned to call a group of his stories “Allegories of the Heart,” and in that unused title he summed up much of his method and his subject....   [tags: Young Goodman Brown YGB]
:: 10 Works Cited
2230 words
(6.4 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
The Allegorical Young Goodman Brown Essay - The Allegorical Young Goodman Brown The story about Young Goodman Brown centers around the allegory of a man pitted against his past and his desires to reach beyond that which his benighted heaven would put before him. The allegory is Christian due to the references in Young Goodman Brown to the devil and Satan; it only seems logical that the crux of the story is based upon the religious imagery of Hawthorne's New England in the times of Salem and active religious strife. The beginning of the story mentions the goodman's wife, Faith....   [tags: Young Goodman Brown YGB] 633 words
(1.8 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Stuggles Of Neil Young Essay - Singer/Songwriter Neil Young was born November 12, 1945, in Toronto, Ontario Canada, to Scott and "Rassy" Young. Neil Young moved to Winnipeg with his mother when she and his father got a divorce (Erlewin N.Pag.). Upset with failed attempts to become successful Young left his former band The Mynah Birds and moved to Los Angeles. (N.Pag.). Young's movement to America was illegal and was an illegal immigrant all thought playing with Buffalo Springfield as well as some of his time with Crosby Stills Nash and Young (Crowe 193)....   [tags: Biography Neil Young Musician] 1313 words
(3.8 pages)
Good Essays [preview]

Debreeding is when the nurse uses tweezers to pull out the blackened dead tissue from inside the hole in Kathy’s leg. A few seconds after I have begun to hold Kathy’s leg, cool beads of sweat are evolving on my forehead and my arms are beginning to shake trying to hold this large mass. I am also finding it difficult to breathe because of this airtight mask. As the nurse begins to debreed the leg, Kathy wakes up screaming. The nurse decides to draw up a surringe with morphine, a heavy painkiller and administers it into Kathy’s I.V. Kathy’s eyes roll back into her head like she just received her fix of heroin. The nurse resumes the process for a few moments more. Kathy isn’t feeling anymore pain and I begin to smile under my facemask happy for her peace. Holding Kathy’s leg is becoming unbearable. I figure out a way to hold her leg without actually holding with my hands. If I stand facing her bed with my left leg flush against it, I can act as if I’m stepping up onto her bed and rest her leg on my right knee. Thank you God! I was scared that I’d drop this poor girl’s leg and cause her more pain.

The nurse now begins to moisten kurlex, which is several yards of rolled up woven cotton, with a salt water solution that will be stuffed deep into the hole of Kathy’s leg. This will help soak up the infection. The nurse uses an extra long Q-tip about ten inches long which will help push the kurlex in as far as it can go. She begins stuffing the leg like she is stuffing a doll a rag doll. The nurse is careful not to touch the kurlex with anything but the Q-tip. Touching it with even her gloved hands can spread germs to Kathy’s wound. She stuffs three yards of the kurlex into the massive hole. The kurlex cannot touch the outside of Kathy leg either because it will eat away at the living skin. I just now realized that I am still in the room with the stench of death and have not vomited yet.

The nurse now begins to wrap a black mesh bandage that looks like a pair of ladies fish net stockings around the meaty stump. The mesh will help to shrink the stump to prepare it for a later fitting of a prosthesis leg. She now begins to wrap the stump several times with dry kurlex. When she is finished with the kurlex, she wraps the whole leg with the largest ace bandage that I have ever seen. I am now able to put Kathy’s leg down. I slowly place my right leg back down on the floor and begin to cradle her leg like a newborn baby to gently lay it down. I remember to cover Kathy back up with her sheet and push her hair back from her face like mom did when I was young.

I closed the door behind me and began pulling off my duck costume and place it in a biohazard bag that will be kept from all other trash. This bag will be burned in an incinerator so it cannot contaminate anything that it comes into contact with.

I go to the restroom to wash the sweat from my face and realize that most people would have just witnessed something terribly gruesome. Or was it? I didn’t vomit like I thought I would and I actually feel good about helping this your girl Kathy. I’ve decided that I want be a nurse.

Return to