My life as a Malaysian doctor in the United States.
Sunday, October 19, 2008
Sometimes you get a reminder of how fragile life is.
I know I'm still somewhat in shock over what happened.
I saw Mr. K in consultation for his diabetes, while he was admitted for heart failure. He was a man with type 1 diabetes, looking a bit older than he was. Balding, thick, wire-rimmed glasses, with a moustache and what looked to be a permanent grin.
He was in pretty good spirits, and we joked about the hospital food and how it was bad intentionally to discourage patients from staying too long. I must have seen him at about 3 pm.
The next morning, my resident calls me up at 7:30 am.
Mr. K coded (had a cardiopulmonary arrest) and died at 1:00 am. While the cause is still not clear, it was probably an arrhythmia. Apparently his automated implantable cardioverter defibrillator was firing several times a few days before.
Nonetheless I'm in a bit of a disbelief. I mean, he looked great just a few hours before. And now, he's probably in the morgue? His family mourning?
It's a reminder to not take life for granted.
Wherever you are, Mr. K, I hope you and your family find peace.