Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Theater (Surgery in Ghana)

          On Friday I observed surgery at Ridge hospital. Here operating rooms are called theaters.  I watched two hernia repairs and two c-sections. Surgery here is done while the patients are awake. When I first walked into the OR it was strange hearing the patient talking to the surgeon. The patients are awake since it requires less observation and removes the risk of side affects from general anesthesia. The c-sections were awesome to observe. I think I liked them more than any other surgery I’ve even seen. I did learn that I can handle a significant amount of blood. In one of the c-sections the mother started bleeding. The blood was everywhere even the floor, since the surgeon couldn’t suction the blood out fast enough. The mother received a transfusion and she and the baby were fine. I guess it’s good to know that blood doesn’t bother me.   

Life Happens Even in Ghana

Life here in Ghana has been a little unpredictable since my last blog post. Dr. Anderson’s mother died very unexpectedly late Friday night. So life here has been a little different than we expected. I didn’t really know his mother well since she didn’t speak much English, but I have gotten to know the other members of the family. Saturday was very difficult for everyone. People traveled from all over Ghana to our house to pay their respects. Its difficult to see people you have grown very fond of grieve such a significant loss, especially after they just lost their grandfather in May. Please keep the family in your prayers. The one-week celebration of life is tomorrow and then the funeral is on August 18th. Dr. Anderson will be staying in Ghana until then. Also, pray for safe travels for his brother, wife, and sons that will be traveling to Ghana from the US.
Monday and Tuesday we worked in Accra with the radio station screening people. I have really enjoyed the community clinics during the trip. I always felt like I was making a difference in the people’s lives. Hopefully the people will take our advice and change their diets and exercise more. The people of Ghana are beginning to face the same chronic disease that many western countries are also facing like hypertension and diabetes.
           Today and tomorrow we are just relaxing and preparing for the trip home on Friday. I can’t wait to get home. I’ve missed my regular diet, hot showers, a washing machine and dryer, Mom and Dad, Penny, and reliable running hot water. I am so thankful for this experience. I learned more than I can write about on this blog. I know now that pursuing a medical degree is defiantly for me. I have the resources, the intelligence, and drive needed to earn my MD. So the way I see it I’d only regret pursuing another career. The journey will be long, just like the people in Ghana live one day at a time, if I take it one day at a time I know I will eventually achieve my dream.