Thursday, November 15, 2012

Day 152 - more talks and exhaustion!

Rob Spencer was able to scrape up an extra ticket for me and I did get to go to the NHHPCO conference afterall! I enjoyed it, learned a lot and mostly just felt so happy to know my professional life is out there waiting for me whenever all this is done. I got to hear Ira Byock speak (always a treat), Joan Berzoff (who I had never heard of, but whose talk was wonderful) and finally Alvin "Woody" Moss, the guy who came up with POLST. Their talks were all good and I felt much smarter coming out.

Then I went to hear Rob's talk on pain (partly because I had been a beta tester and wanted to see the finished product and partly because I just wanted to hear it). All of the people with me were non-prescribers so it was not quite focussed for me, but I still managed to learn things. Rob has this really neat idea of viewing pain scales as a two dimensional construct with a sensory and an emotional component. We can all think of patients who have a lot of sensory pain, but not much emotional component to it: they would be far out on the x axis and not very high up on the y.  Conversely we can think of patients whose pain has a lot of emotional content, but not as much sensory. They would cluster closer to the y axis and higher up. He talked about the patient who tells you their pain in 12 out of 10 and how this almost for certain means there is an emotional component to their pain (which I have heard many times before, but doesn't hurt to be reminded).

I ate lunch and left at that point, exhausted. Fun, but I'm not ready for prime time yet.

There was nothing else to my day: napping, fetching Ellie from school so she could avoid the late school bus, dinner, bed as soon as I can get Ellie off to bed. When she was smaller, from time to time when I was beat, I could tell her it was bed time and scoop her up and hour early, but no hope for that now.

All I'm hoping for for tonight is a good night's sleep. If you'd like something more exciting than that for yourself, you're on your own. Otherwise, I'll wish that for you, too.

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