Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Delivering Bad News

I had a tough night last night.

I had to tell a mother that her baby had cancer.

Certain things can mean a worse prognosis according to the attending I was working with. These include:
1) Male
2) Less than 2 yrs old
3) White blood cell count greater than 100,000

And there I was - telling the mother of a 16 month old baby boy with a white count of 144,000 that the reason he had bruises all over his legs was because he had leukemia.

I will remember that patient for as long as I live.