Health & Medicine

Medics in Afghanistan

My second day here we had a large group of critical patients, U.S. soldiers. A very long day in the OR, a lot of amputations, but we saved their lives. someone had gotten into U.S. uniforms and started firing. That was the first day for OR doctors. We had three critical patients, one man had both legs and an arm amputated. I think the most testing was the morning we had a suicide bomber at the gate, and this morning, there was a loud boom, the door blew open. I came into work and there were bodies everywhere, blood all over. 16 patients, I did 9 surgeries that day, back to back. I started at 9 that morning and finished at 11 that night. At midnight we got a rocket attack and they told us to barricade ourselves. That was scary. We put on our body armor and locked and loaded our weapons. That was scary. Occasionally we'll get someone in from Taliban. You don't treat them any different, but you do think about what they do. As a medical care provider, you just take care of people. You see these young men, and many of them are very young, I have kids that old. You wonder about their families, are we going to be able to save this person and then what quality of life will they have?

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