I recently received a thank-you note from a patient. While I may spend hours taking care of a patient, most barely remember me. I meet patients in the preoperative area for a few minutes while they are distracted by the litany of paperwork and a parade of well-intentioned personnel from the hospital. Shortly thereafter, a magical cocktail of drugs erases most of the rest of our interaction.
This patient was different, he was a colleague that I had known for many years. The comment on the note was short and to the point: “Thank you for keeping me alive.”
As shocked as I was by the directness of the letter, it brought to mind several key anesthesia myths.
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