Monday, May 27, 2013

Humpty Dumpty's Great Fall


A Tale of a Misfortunate Mild Concussion

        “It’s with a heavy heart that I report local hero, Humpty Dumpty, was sitting on a wall yesterday when Humpty Dumpty had quite a great fall.  All the King’s Horses and All the King’s Men Ambulance service promptly arrived on the scene, but were unable to put him back together again.  EMTs proceeded to scoop up the dazed egg and transported him to the Royal Medical Center for further treatment.  All we know is that Humpty is alive and that his condition remains guarded at this time.  Investigators are looking into the cause of the accident and we will keep you informed as more information becomes available.  In other news…”

            “Oh Humpty, really, you should just turn that off.  It just makes you more agitated and the doctor said you need your rest,” reminded Mrs. Dumpty.  “All the imaging studies have been normal so far and they’ve just kept you overnight for observation.  You should be all good to go once the doctor releases you.”

            “But they make it all sound so terrible!  Why did I have to go and save the King’s royal chicken from crossing the road?  I didn’t want to be a celebrity you know.  I just have such a soft spot for poultry…” sniffed Humpty.

            “Shhh dear, I know, I know.  Why don’t you just close your eyes again and rest for the moment?  There you go.  I’ll be right here by your side the whole time.  Shh.”  Mrs. Dumpty stroked her husband’s head as he drifted off to sleep.  Secretly, she did worry a little about the severity of her husband’s condition.  She had heard that sometimes symptoms took days or weeks to show up and sometimes even longer to go away.    

            A soft knock at the door interrupted her troubled thoughts.  “Hello Mrs. Dumpty, how is he doing?” the nurse quietly asked.

“Huh, what?  Are we getting out of here?”  Humpty groggily questioned as he woke from his nap.

            “Just a moment Dear.  He’s doing well overall, but his head seems a little scrambled.  He slept alright through the night, although he has been a little more irritable and emotional.”

            “Doing well? Oh, but my head hurts like a goose!  I’m a good egg, honest. I’ll tell ya what though, this falling down thing is not all it’s cracked up to be!” complained Humpty.

            “That’s all perfectly normal after a mild concussion.  Rest is the key to giving the brain a chance to heal, then all should be right as rain.  Most people recover quickly as long as they take care of themselves.  You have that list of symptoms right.  Mrs. Dumpty, remember to just keep an eye on him once he goes home and make sure he’s not pushing himself too hard.  Oh, and no alcohol because it makes the recovery process slower.”

            “No alcohol?  Well, I guess you can’t make an omelet without breaking some eggs.”

            “Oh Dear, really now, you’ll survive.  Nurse, what if things don’t get better?  What if he gets worse?”

            “Just give the doctor a jingle or come right on back to the emergency room.  Make sure you come right away if his speech starts to slur, if he has a persistent headache that just keeps getting worse or if he gets weak and uncoordinated.  He’s going to be alright Mrs. Dumpty.  We’ve got him all patched up.”

            “Oh thank you for putting my fears to rest.  Don’t worry, I’ll make sure to take him back to our nest and sit on him if necessary.”

            “Yeah, sometimes you’re just such a mother hen!  And hey, a little time laying low sounds refreshing for a change.  I always feel like I’m walking on egg shells around all those reporters,” Humpty piped in.

            “Alrighty then, you guys are all good to go.  Now we had better not see you back here Humpty or we might not be able to put you back together again the next time round!” the nurse advised as she handed over the discharge papers. 

“Yeah, yeah… Ok Hon, how ‘bouts we put an egg in our shoe and beat it?”  With precautions taken to avoid the curious paparazzi, the Dumpty’s returned back to their humble home on Egg Carton Lane.

  Medical Morales to Remember:

·         Mild Concussion – AKA Mild Traumatic Brain Injury – injury to the brain that occurs due to an outside impact to the head

·         Categories of signs to watch for include: Cognitive Function, Motor function, Sensations, and Emotions

·         Nursing Care: Monitor Neurological Status, educate about signs and symptoms, encourage rest and avoidance of alcohol

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