Dr Ben Hockenhull - Speciality Doctor in Anaesthetics
I am originally from Manchester, but moved to Stoke in 2004 to start my Medical Degree at Keele University as one of the first students to be wholly taught and examined by them. Since graduating in 2009 I have worked around the West Midlands and in North Wales.
When I started medical school, my interests were based around resuscitation and caring for the sickest patients, which led me to develop an interest in Anaesthesia, as we work across a wide range of areas, looking after those having elective surgery and those needing intensive care support. My interests have now led me to focus more on paediatric anaesthesia and major trauma/resuscitation such as that seen in Critical Condition.
As an anaesthetist at RSUH, my job is one of the most varied in the hospital. Over a 12-hour shift I can anaesthetise anyone from a woman for Caesarean section, a bleed on the brain, a ruptured aneurysm or someone needing an abscess drain. The variety is one of the best parts of my job, combined with the satisfaction of being able to see rapid results from the things we do for patients under our care in theatre.
Bizarrely though, if we do our job well, very few of our patients or their relatives will ever even remember who we are! Over the past 15 years I have seen RSUH and medicine in general change rapidly. We are growing busier day-to-day, with new treatments being developed continuously. Anaesthetists are part of many of these developments and our skills are used to keep patients stable and safe throughout their procedures. We are always there in the background, keeping things going.