Accidental gunshot wound nearly proves deadly
(Article Source: Healthy AZ Living 9/30/08)
Level I Trauma Center improves survival odds for critically injured patients
By Andrea Markowitz
Kendra Beiser doesn’t remember the first 48 hours after she felt a bullet pierce her neck.
Beiser was hanging out with friends when a pistol, believed to be unloaded, accidentally discharged. The bullet entered the front of her neck, passed down her right side and lodged in her back shoulder. One friend administered CPR while another called 911.
When the 19-year-old arrived at Scottsdale Healthcare Osborn’s Level I Trauma Center on March 8, she was unresponsive.
“We immediately took action,” said Kenneth Ransom, MD, Osborn’s Trauma Medical Director. “We put a tube in her chest to drain blood pooling from an injured major vessel in her upper chest. She was taken to the operating room without delay.
“The bullet also severed a major vessel supplying oxygen to the brain. We thought she’d have a 50 percent chance of surviving and about a 25 percent chance of surviving without serious physical disability or brain damage.”
Even with that assessment, Dr. Ransom knew Kendra’s odds for survival and recovery would have been even less if she had been transported to a facility not equipped to handle her critical injuries.
Ready 24 hours a day
Level I trauma centers like Scottsdale Healthcare Osborn are different from hospital emergency departments because a team of trauma-trained, board-certified doctors and nurses are available for immediate action around the clock.
In the blink of an eye
(Article Source: Healthy AZ Living 9/30/08)
Surgeons reconstruct woman’s shattered pelvis after car accident
By Elise Riley
Sept. 6, 2007 was a lovely day near Mill Avenue in Tempe. Maureen Magrogan and her brother had just enjoyed a cup of coffee and were walking back to their car. She didn’t know her life was about to change.
“A car came and it was speeding,” Magrogan said. “My brother yelled. According to him, I did fly in the air a good bit, and I was in bad shape. I’m very fortunate that I don’t remember it.”
Rushed to Scottsdale Healthcare Osborn’s Level I trauma center, Magrogan would discover that her pelvis was shattered.
Scottsdale Healthcare Osborn has made orthopedic trauma one of its focal points. With four orthopedic trauma fellowshiptrained specialists, the hospital receives some of the most complex trauma cases in the state.
“It’s an area we’ve focused on very heavily over the last four years,” said Dean Thomas, associate vice president for orthopedics and neurosciences. “We’ve dedicated a lot of resources to putting together the best program in the state, which all starts with recruiting the best talent.”
Each of the hospital’s orthopedic trauma surgeons has an extra year of training in complex orthopedic trauma. Patients from all over the state, particularly rural Arizona and the east Valley, arrive at the center for its specialized treatment. Many of the trauma center’s patients are rushed there with head injuries or fractures. In addition to the orthopedic trauma specialists, these patients also might encounter a general trauma surgeon, a hand specialist, a neurosurgeon, vascular surgeon or plastic/reconstructive surgeon.
A ‘floating’ pelvis
A team evaluated Magrogan before Gil Ortega, MD, one of the orthopedic trauma specialists, took over her case. Magrogan was fortunate. She had no internal injuries or spine and neck injuries but was badly cut and bruised. Dr. Ortega’s task was to repair Magrogan’s fractured pelvis. “She had a loss of consciousness,was suffering from shock and had what’s called a floating pelvis, when both sides are fractured front and back,” Dr. Ortega said.
“Generally these injuries have a high risk of mortality, as high as 30 percent, because of the significant blood loss. Half of her pelvis was so vertically displaced, we had to put a pin in her femur to help bring the pelvis back to its center,” he explained. Magrogan’s family soon filled the waiting room. Two days after the accident, a surgeon removed the femur pin and she had surgery to reposition and stabilize both the front and back of her pelvis with a plate and screws.
“One of my sisters took on the advocate role, and (Dr. Ortega) really took the time to explain things,” Magrogan said. “We had nine, 10 people there, and he took the time to shake everyone’s hand and respond to my family’s needs in a very sensitive way. Gentleness counts. We weren’t afraid because we were in capable hands.”
Screws and plates
Magrogan returned home three weeks later. She participated in outpatient physical therapy through one of Scottsdale Healthcare’s facilities.
“Initially I couldn’t walk,” Magrogan said. “But being in the pool was one of the most liberating things, to move my joints and muscles again. My very first real walk was an extremely special moment. It was Christmas Eve, at church, with my family.”
By March, Magrogan was walking on her own. She still has screws and a plate in her pelvis --“I got to keep the hardware,” she joked — and said that no one would think she had an injury upon meeting her.
“That’s the highlight! You’d never know and would never guess,” she said.
“At the time, we knew it was pretty grave and serious,” Magrogan said. “It’s amazing how Dr. Ortega was. He took the time to show me what really happened and what he did to put me back together.”