Friday, November 30, 2007

The award for most ridiculous medical procedures in a drama goes to...

...Law and Order: SVU "Paternity"

I normally don't take TV shows seriously. I like the Law and Order series. It is always relaxing to watch a good psychotic murderer at 10:00 pm to wind down from a long day.

I tuned in this past Tuesday night (11/28) and saw a nanny murder with a side dish of infidelity, paternity issues and a botched murder-suicide. This only took 40 minutes. What could happen in the last 20 minutes? The worst medical procedural scene I have witnessed in some time on television, that's what.

Elliott Stabler's wife (pregnant, full-term) is being driven to a doctor's appointment by Stabler's partner, Detective Olivia Benson, when they are t-boned by a drunk. During the ensuing rescue the police detective (played by Mariska Hargitay) climbs back inside the wreck and starts an IV under the direction of a FDNY medic. She doesn't just start an IV...she starts an IV from a position an experienced medic would cringe at (but do). Then, without instruction, she tamponades the vein. The medic then hands in a small bag of fluid and instructs Benson to "squeeze the bag." She does, but rather than squeeze and hold the bag she performs this rhythmic squeezing thing that miraculously brings the patient back to life.

It is fortunate that she was brought back because she was then able to push like a fiend to get that baby out in the moving ambulance (sans stretcher straps) on the way to the hospital. Like we would want to intentionally deliver a baby from a woman with internal injuries, in a moving ambulance, alone.

Not surprisingly, she does easily deliver the baby (two pushes), who arrives in the world as all TV babies do (clean, without an umbilical cord, APGAR=10 and crying for mommy). Also without surprise, the patient loses consciousness again after delivering the baby.

I know it is a cop show and this was alleged drama but you really have to see it. If you have a PC you can watch the episode online. Or just watch the last 20 minutes. If you do, please leave a comment here to tell me what you thought.

I suspect that some (if not all) of the FDNY personnel portrayed in the episode were actually FDNY. My sincere condolences to you for having to participate in such dramatic fluff.

Remember when Johnny Gage started the IV on himself in the hose bed of the engine after being bitten by the snake?

Those were the days.

1 comment:

Libby G. said...

I am de-lurking! I saw that episode, and probably much like you, I was screaming at the tv. When the "medic" actually said "I'll walk you through it" I nearly threw the remote at the screen. Then when they released the straps and let her sit up to push, I just started laughing, it had gone too far. I am not a medic, I have the EMT training but never took the state test, and even I knew that sequence of scenes was total crap. I was just wondering if anybody else noticed! Thanks for observing!