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Boston I.C.U. doctor reveals the heartbreaking reality of treating coronavirus patients

“They All Suffer and Die Alone”: Boston I.C.U. Physician Reveals The Heartbreaking Reality Of Treating Patients On The Front Line Of The Coronavirus Pandemic

  • For Dr. Llamas are the ‘lonely deaths’ of COVID-19, one of the most difficult aspects of the pandemic to come to terms
  • Her sick patients were crushed when the hospital changed the visit protocol
  • Even some end-of-life visits are refused to prevent the virus from spreading, she said
  • Patients can only die in “sterile hospital rooms” far from loved ones
  • Coronavirus symptoms: what are they and should you see a doctor?

A doctor from the Boston Intensive Care Unit has revealed the heartbreaking reality of treating coronavirus patients in a critical condition on the frontline.

Daniela J. Lamas, a critical care physician at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, has detailed how many patients who suffer from the disease die alone because loved ones are not allowed to visit.

For Dr. Llamas are the “lonely deaths” of COVID-19 victims, one of the most difficult aspects of the pandemic that can help to come to terms as a physician.

Critical care doctor Daniela J. Lamas (photo) describes how many patients who suffer from the disease die alone, because loved ones are not allowed to visit

Critical care doctor Daniela J. Lamas (photo) describes how many patients who suffer from the disease die alone, because loved ones are not allowed to visit

For Dr. Lamas are the 'lonely deaths' of COVID-19 victims, one of the most difficult aspects of the pandemic that one can come to terms with as a doctor (Image:)

For Dr. Lamas are the 'lonely deaths' of COVID-19 victims, one of the most difficult aspects of the pandemic that one can come to terms with as a doctor (Image:)

For Dr. Lamas are the ‘lonely deaths’ of COVID-19 victims, one of the most difficult aspects of the pandemic that one can come to terms with as a doctor (Image:)

She described the crushing moment when she had to inform a COVID-19 patient, who also suffered from cystic fibrosis, that her husband was no longer able to visit because the hospital changed the rules.

“I saw their faces shift. My patient’s breathing accelerated and the ventilator alarm sounded. Her husband quickly put his hand on her shoulder and her breathing slowed; the alarms stopped. He knew how to calm her down, “she wrote in the New York Times.

“But now that we are tightening our protocols to protect our patients from the threat of Covid-19, she is alone.”

In another case, Dr. Lamas how a patient used FaceTime on his daughter when he started coughing up blood on the hospital floor and had to be placed on a ventilator.

Dr. Lamas works at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston (photo)

Dr. Lamas works at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston (photo)

Dr. Lamas works at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston (photo)

“So that’s the last image she has of her father – on a shaky computer screen, bloodstains on his hospital gown,” complained Dr. Lamas, adding that she wasn’t sure if and when the daughter would be able to see her father again.

Even end-of-life visits to close relatives sometimes had to be refused to prevent the spread of the deadly virus to hospital patients.

In another recent shift, a doctor was forced to decline a daughter’s visit to her critically ill parents who were intubated with severe breathing problems because she lived with them and had a fever of her own, putting her at risk of infecting other patients.

It means that if her parents die from this, “they will do so in separate sterile hospital rooms, far from anyone who loves them,” said Dr. Lamas.

Dr. Lamas (pictured) described the crushing moment when she had to inform a COVID-19 patient who also suffered from cystic fibrosis that her husband was no longer able to visit because the hospital changed the rules

Dr. Lamas (pictured) described the crushing moment when she had to inform a COVID-19 patient who also suffered from cystic fibrosis that her husband was no longer able to visit because the hospital changed the rules

Dr. Lamas (pictured) described the crushing moment when she had to inform a COVID-19 patient who also suffered from cystic fibrosis that her husband was no longer able to visit because the hospital changed the rules

“The devastating picture of the lonely deaths of coronavirus patients in Italy is over our heads,” she said, wishing she could provide comfort to patients, but that she too is “scared.”

“So I do what I have to do and then I leave. I don’t take the time to reassure, explain, and certainly not hold a hand. The truth is I’m scared. ‘

The state of Massachusetts reported four new deaths from the coronavirus on Wednesday, bringing the total to 15 for the state.

The Department of Health registered a total of 1,838 cases of coronavirus, an increase of 679 from the previous day.

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