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作者:外语爱好…    文章来源:本站原创    更新时间:2020/9/4
There wasn’t going to be a happy ending. The patient had metastatic[转移性的] cancer and had just gone through her third unsuccessful regimen[疗程] of chemotherapy[化疗]. Now it seemed that everywhere we looked, we found disease.

When she arrived in the intensive care unit[重症监护病房], she was delirious[神智昏迷的]. I asked her the usual questions, about her medical history, and whether she wanted us to do CPR注1 if her heart were to stop beating, but she didn’t answer. I was just setting the clipboard[带夹子的写字板] aside when she raised a hand and told me: “Doc, do everything you can. I need to make it to my daughter’s wedding.”

She was in a lot of pain. She had a tube down her nose draining[引流] her stomach.
“When is the wedding?” I asked.
“Next summer.”
I blinked[眨眼]. I blinked again. She didn’t—she was looking right at me. At this point, I doubted she’d make it through the hospitalization[住院治疗], let alone eight more months. I didn’t know what I could say. I put the stethoscope[听诊器] against her chest and fell into silence.

I met Stefanie, her daughter, the next morning. She was 24, but was only eight when her mother’s cancer was first diagnosed[诊断]. Stefanie had shared her home with cancer for many years, and had always seen her mother fight.

But she knew that this time was different. The oncology[肿瘤学] fellow who had been treating her mother as an outpatient[门诊病人] was the one to tell her that her mother was dying. Stefanie broke down, but understood there was no use denying[否认] it. The dream of a family wedding under the summer sun turned sour[令人失望,变坏].

Stefanie called her fiance[未婚夫] that morning. Crying, she told him the news. But he turned things completely around. Without hesitation[犹豫] he told her, “I want her to be there, too,” and he promised not only to have the wedding done sooner, but to have it done right there in the ICU.

Our medical team was used to dealing with all kinds of crises[危機]: Handling a last-minute wedding was not one of them. While having more than one opinion on a medical team regarding[关于] how best to manage a patient is fairly routine[日常的], we received no push back from anyone as we started to make arrangements for[安排某事] the wedding. Soon the whole team was involved. We sent a letter to the court[法院] to speed up the marriage certificate[结婚证]. A pastor[牧师] and harp[竖琴] player were booked. The hospital cafeteria[自助餐厅] baked a chocolate cake, and the nurses brought in flowers. In just a few days, we were ready.

My job was to make sure our patient’s pain was controlled while also avoiding the confusion[混乱状态] that is a side effect[副作用] of narcotic[麻醉] medications. But miraculously[奇迹般地], she didn’t need pain medications for hours and was fully aware of everything that was going on. Looking at the bride[新娘] and groom[新郎] from her hospital bed, she seemed more comfortable than I had ever seen her before. The whole day had an unreal feel to it; everything felt like it slowed down. The sun shone through the windows and glistened[闪耀] on the bags of fluid[液体]. For once in the hospital, there were tears but no pain. It felt as if, after all these years of chasing our patient down, even the cancer took a break.

The next morning, the family decided to move her to hospice. No intubation[插管], no CPR—nothing that would prolong[延长] life. It was all about trying to make the patient comfortable. (And yet, four months later, she is still alive.)

In today’s efficiency[效率]obsessed[着迷] medical world, it’s easy to forget that healing patients isn’t just about treating diseases and relieving[减轻] symptoms[症状]. There are things doctors and nurses can do, meaningful interventions[干涉]—like helping patients fulfill final goals or spend quality time注2 with their families—that cannot be documented[记录] in a discharge summary[出院小结] or be converted[转变] into a blip[评论] on a screen.
As a doctor, I never liked the word “miracle.”I preferred to think in terms of[以……措辞] “medical outliers[异常值].” And yet that day of the wedding did feel like a miracle. Doctors often share their patients’ sorrow[悲伤], but rarely their joys. We had not discovered the cure to cancer, but we had achieved something powerful—freeing, if only temporarily[短暂地], our patient from her disease.

One of the nurses, smiling through her tears, spoke to me after it was all over. “It was magical,”she said. “None of the patient alarms went off.”









婚礼结束后,其中一位护士笑中带泪地对我说:“这真是太神奇了,(婚礼期间)没有任何一个病人的呼叫器被按响。” 英语美文Opportunity善待机遇
英语美文Still Growing成长不息
英语美文April Showers Bring May Flowers
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