My first live surgical experience!


If there is one thing I can not stand and hate being around, then that has got to be the hospitals. No, I have nothing against doctors or hospitals in particular, I just can’t stand that nauseating smell that emanates from spirit, medicines and equipment. Also, I just can’t stand the sight of surgical equipment such as razor, scissors, knives etc., as I feel giddy as I instantly begin to visualize how they would be used and that mental-picture makes me overcome with dizziness.

Also, I’m a person who is very weak at heart. I can’t stand the sight of sobbing relatives, injured patients, patients waiting to be operated upon, people overcoming with sadness at the exorbitant costs of operation and/or their ability to meet those expenses. All these things make me feel that hospitals are a wretched place to be in.

Now, I know that hospitals do a lot of good, treating and curing patients and giving them a new lease of life. I also know that Doctors are the only people we would look upon, when we are in need. I am not being irrational in my hatred towards hospitals, it is just because of my being a weakling.

Now imagine my horror, when I was told that I was supposed to witness a live surgery! Not only will I have to endure the sight of the surgical instruments – that make me feel giddy only at the sight of them – but also be present when the doctors use them to operate a patient in the Operation Theater!
Yeah, I gasped and even the thought of witnessing a surgery was shit scary and beat the living daylights out of me.
Well, eventually, I had to attend and am glad to say, I was able to witness it without fainting! 😛
What helped me was that I did witness the surgery, but from the glass in the door of the operation theater. I could see everything, unfortunately, but at least, I was out of the room and that gave me solace and strength that I could run anytime if the sight was unbearable.

I witnessed a bilateral knee replacement surgery. Doctors and medical people, pardon my terminology, as I would be using layman terms to explain the surgery.

So, the patient was given local anesthesia and both his legs, from thighs to ankle, were wrapped by two layers of white tape to reduce the blood flow. Then, they tore off the tape covering the knee area and spread a yellow-colored knee drape across both the knees. And the doctor took a knife (gasp!) and cut a straight line right in the middle of the knee as if it were a rubber ball. (It actually resembled one.) And, casually, with his two hands, pulled at the two sides of the ball  knee, tearing it further and revealing the tissues inside. Horror!

Yesterday, I actually thought that I wouldn’t last long and I would faint at the first use of the knife. But, I somehow managed to stand-still. This was the most horrible part, the cutting, post that, it was manageable. Although, I am sure I lasted this long just because I was standing outside the O.T. If I were inside, the experience today would have been completely different.

Post that, the doctor used shaver blades, drill machines, hammers and nails and what not to clear the tissues until the white bone inside was clearly visible. Post that, using various equipment, he cut the upper part of the knee-bone that was affected and replaced it by an artificial implant which was attached to the bone with the help of cement. Later, they stitched the tear with the help of a needle and a thread.

So, yes, that was my first surgery that I witnessed live. Hopefully, the next time I have to go, I will muster enough courage in my heart to go inside the operation theater! And not faint! 😀

Moral : God has a really funny way of making us do the very things that we hate fervently and wish that we never have to do them!

Hats off to all those doctors, surgeons, assistants and hospital staff who endure this on a daily basis. And hats off to all the medical students aspiring to become one of these.

P.S : To those who want to know what I actually witnessed, check-out this video.. (at your own risk!) (graphic)

(This video is that of the surgery performed in a foreign location. So, there are many differences in the instruments used, but the overall procedure of the surgery is same in India as well.)

About Jigar Doshi

M.B.A. Blogger. Love to watch movies and read fiction. Occasionally, dabble with writing some fiction too. Spend most of leisure time on Twitter and Quora.
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2 Responses to My first live surgical experience!

  1. parwatisingari says:

    what did you go to the OT for? I took my husband to a post-martum just after we were married and my professor was conducting the postmartum, she offered him tea over the cadaver, his look was priceless. ..

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