Surgery in the Wild

So, here is a little secret about my horrible little third year surgery experience: I never got to assist. I never got to cut. I never got to stitch. I think it was a combination of me having a poor attitude, me being too scared to ask, and the registrar being an arse.

BUT my time in the rural Western Cape – with a superb supervising doctor – had me practising sutures and assisting in surgeries – it was awesome!

I think I could actually like surgery if it weren’t for the surgeons.

Yesterday I assisted in a female sterilisation. The fallopian tube really looks like a little flower…

But by far the coolese thing about that surgery was seeing subcutaneous sutures for the first time! The lady will have minimal scarring, and she didn’t even need a plastic surgeon. One day, I’ll do these like a pro!

Note: The downside to these sutures is that they are uninterupted. That means that if a patient should develop some wound-related complication, you have to undo all stitches to explore, rather than first exploring by only undoing one or two stitches. And they’re a little more difficult than interrupted sutures. Less tying though!

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