This week at Royal Stoke, 23 year old Sam is rushed in with an excruciating pain in his lungs. Having coughed up over two mugs of blood, he’s now struggling to breathe and has been losing consciousness as a result. As his condition deteriorates rapidly, Trauma Team Leader Paul Hancock knows he has little time to act. He suspects a pulmonary embolism - which, if left untreated, could cause life-long damage to Sam’s heart.
Meanwhile staff rush to attend a 66 year old patient who has been found at home in cardiac arrest. As resus staff take over life-saving CPR from the paramedics, they know that their patient has been down for a considerable time. Even if they do manage to restart their patient’s heart, TTL Paul knows there may still be some tough decisions to make ahead.
Across the hospital, surgery isn’t coming a moment too soon for Charlie who has been living with unbearable pain in his legs for several years. Cardiovascular surgeon Mr Calderwood, suspects that Charlie has major damage to the aorta which supplies the blood to his lower body. With his patient now virtually a prisoner in his own armchair, there’s only one cure – an aortic by-pass. But will Charlie want to go ahead with a surgery which carries such huge risk of a potentially catastrophic bleed?
Finally, Peter is flown in from Wales, having been gored by an angry, tusked boar. With deep wound damage to his calf, TTL Paul Hancock needs to evaluate the wound quickly. If the blood supply to Peter’s leg has been badly damaged, that could mean the potential loss of a limb.