When Doctors Can’t Save Patients…

“I have seen the life pass from individuals too numerous to count – men, women, and children – as they died in my presence. And I have on countless occasions borne the unpleasant responsibility of breaking the gut-wrenching news to family members and friends – who just hours prior saw their spouses or loved ones off to work or school – that the person whom they once loved so very dearly in life, had now passed on to the world of the dead. I have heard the wailing and the screaming of grieving mothers, and I have seen the faces of the victims’ fathers age before my very eyes. I have often felt that for every family to whom I have given the terrible news, I myself have sacrificed at least a few days of my own life.”

– Dr. James Cole

A quote from Trauma: My Life As An Emergency Surgeon by Dr. James Cole

This paragraph of text shows the personal hardship a trauma surgeon, or any physician for that matter, must endure with each patient they are unable to save.


2 responses

  1. I’m an ICU nurse and I feel the same way, I’ve cried more times than I can count, it never gets easy!

  2. Thanks for the comment. I definitely imagine working in the ICU is extremely taxing emotionally!

    I worked in a level I trauma center for 2 years so I’ve experienced a fair share of death as well. It’s the successful stories that make it worthwhile though!

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