Thursday, April 2, 2009

A really good reason to work out.

We made a call the other day to an older woman's home in the middle of the night. She had fallen in her bathroom and couldn't get up...just like that old medical alarm commercial, LOL! So, anyhow, she's over 300 lbs, maybe more and she's that type of obese person that has probably never really been in good shape. That's important because if you want to be in good condition when you're old you have to be in great condition when you're young. Seriously.

If you're not in good condition and you're obese when you're younger and you never lose that weight or get in shape then as you age your muscles will become even weaker and all that fat will turn into a marshmallow like tissue surrounding your frame. This matters because if you can't get around and fall often then it's incredibly difficult to pick you back up.

That's basically what happened with this patient. She was too weak and heavy to stand on her own from the floor. She had fallen and wedged herself between the toilet and the bathtub, ugh! We had very little room to work with and when we attempted to grasp her arms/upper body, the marshmallow tissue oozed through our fingers. She's too weak to offer any real help supporting her own weight and she's in pain when we try to pull her because her skin is in such poor condition that it starts to tear. Skin tears are quite painful, google it.

So, we're pulling and pushing and trying to unwedge her and we eventually get her out but she's now face down on the floor. It's like trying to unbeach a whale. And I don't mean that in an insulting manner, it's just the reality. EMS has limited tools with which to deal with this type of situation and it usual comes down to brute strength and a great deal of pain and embarrassment for the patient. With and extra 3 people; now two engine crews with 3 each and my partner and myself; we're finally able to get her on a heavy duty medical tarp and lift her to the stretcher. We transport her to the hospital and at that time she was in stable condition but who knows how many times she'll fall again before she accepts that she can't live alone anymore and needs an assisted living center.

So next time you decided to skip your workout or not worry too much about that extra 50 lbs, think about where you'll be in 20, 30 or more years. I know I do! Oh, and FYI human fat looks exactly like chicken fat; more inspiration to stay in good condition, not model thin, just healthy and strong. :o)

1 comment:

  1. Oh yuck. that is so incredibly sad. I promise to exercise today. I have to much chicken fat around the middle and I know that belly fat is the worst kind of fat. Thanks for the inspiration.


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