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Residents to the Rescue


OR pharmacist Geoff Boyd, seated, with the anesthesiology residents who saved him: from left, David Brouhard, Rob Hurley, Gregg Motonaga and Jeff Small.
Fortunately, Geoff Boyd was back to being a pharmacist after a 20-year hiatus practicing law. Because if he had been working in a law firm early on that fateful morning this past spring, he likely would not be alive today.

Instead, Boyd was on Carnegie 7 when he began to have palpitations and feel light-headed. He sat down on the floor of the GOR pharmacy and took his pulse. It was only 40 beats per minute. “He looked funny,” recalls Gregg Motonaga, chief resident in anesthesiology, who was across the hall preparing for his morning cases. “He said, ‘I don’t feel well.’ He was sweaty. I had him lie down on the floor and checked his pulse. I called for help.”

Jeff Small was nearby. He hurried over to the lounge to rally fellow residents David Brouhard and Rob Hurley, who were post-call. “The pharmacist is down!” Small shouted. The surprised residents raced to the pharmacy. Motonaga was putting an IV with atropine into the back of Boyd’s hand. They grabbed an EKG off the crash cart and affixed the leads. They managed to get Boyd’s 6-foot- 3 inch, 210-pound frame on a gurney. Then they sprinted with the gurney to the ED.

Boyd, it turned out, had heart block, an interference with the conduction of electrical impulses that control the heart muscle. After the ED, he went to the CCU, then to CVDL, where he received a pacemaker. He was back at work several days later.

The residents, meanwhile, went about their day as though nothing out of the ordinary had happened. “I just started in on my cases,” says Motonaga. “I guess you could say that Geoff was our first case of the day.”

Ann Bennett Swingle

 

 

 

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