Accident with possible injuries where a 6-lane road meets another 6-lane road. During rush hour. In the rain. Fantastic.
Minor damage to the car, with no airbag deployment. “You guys have one patient right there in that car. My guy is holding c-spine in the back seat” says the officer on the engine.
“Hi, sir. How are you? Are you hurting anywhere?” I ask the driver of the vehicle.
“I’m paralyzed from the chest down and my fingers aren’t getting any blood flow and my neck really hurts” replies the alleged patient, quite calmly, and while gesticulating wildly with his hands.
A quick look into the face of the fireman in the back seat, and seeing the eye roll confirms my suspicions.
“Okay, sir, you just hang tight for a second, and we will get you out of this car.”
“Oh, I can get out” he replies, as he picks up his paraplegic legs and begins to get out of the car.
“You don’t have to do that, sir” instructs the fireman. “We can get you out of the car. You just hold tight for a second.”
The patient complies and is extricated from the car. A quick survey reveals neuro function better than expected, with no deficits. Anywhere.
“On a scale of one to ten, ten being the worst pain ever, and zero being no pain at all, how bad is your neck hurting you, sir?” I ask once we are in the ambulance.
“Okay. I’ll mark down ‘ten,’ how does that sound?”
“NO! I said it hurts a MILLION!”
“Sir, I really don’t have room in this little box for that many zeroes. I’m just going to have to write ‘ten,’ okay?”
“Make sure the hospital knows it hurts a million!”
Nurses never believe me when I give these reports.