- Mar 12, 2022
Things Change; Car / Truck Owners Given Same Consideration As Their Vehicles"The patient, a man in his early twenties, hobbled into the E.R. on a Wednesday morning, anxious and gasping, his shirt covered in blood. Minneapolis in the nineteen-eighties was experiencing an increase in violent crime that would later earn it the nickname Murderapolis; at Hennepin County Medical Center, the city’s safety-net hospital, stabbings and gunshot wounds had become commonplace. Doctors there had treated dozens of patients with wounds to the chest, and the outcomes had been dismal: roughly half had died, and many survivors suffered brain damage.
January 20, 2023
January 20, 2023
If the bloodied man at Hennepin had arrived a day earlier, he might have died while his doctors continued to monitor him. But, he had stumbled into an experiment. A small group of Hennepin doctors had decided to place an ultrasound machine in the E.R.’s trauma bay, to see if they could quickly diagnose hemorrhaging in the heart. Ultrasound lets clinicians see inside the body in much the same way echolocation allows bats to navigate at night: a probe emits sound waves at a frequency far beyond human hearing, and these waves bounce off bone but pass through fluid, allowing the probe, which is also a receiver, to sense the body’s interior. On an ultrasound screen, bones appear bright white, flowing blood looks black, and most other bodily tissues are visible in different shades of gray.
As doctors and nurses descended on the injured man, someone rolled the half-ton ultrasound machine close and placed its probe on his chest. Sound waves spread imperceptibly through his body, and an instant later his heart filled the screen. It was surrounded by light gray: blood was beginning to suffocate it. The man was rushed to the operating room, where surgeons quickly drained the encroaching blood and repaired the wounds to his heart. He recovered without significant disability."