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#12726 - 12/12/00 03:51 PM stat ?
phil-wieland Offline
stranger

Registered: 09/29/00
Posts: 8
Loc: Pittsburgh PA
This is probably a very stupid question but . . .

In medical dramas as they wheel the patient into the emergency room they always say "25 miligrams of somethingorother. Stat!". What is this word "stat"? Have I misheard?


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#12727 - 12/12/00 04:07 PM Re: stat ?
Marty Offline
enthusiast

Registered: 09/20/00
Posts: 347
Loc: Melbourne, Australia
No such thing as a stupid question, they say, except the one that is not asked.

From the site "medspeak - the Language of ER",
http://www.geocities.com/TelevisionCity/5196/medspeak.html#s:

stat - from the Latin statinum, meaning immediately


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#12728 - 12/13/00 06:00 AM Re: stat ?
RhubarbCommando Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 08/23/00
Posts: 2204
Hi, Phil - welcome to the board - in the temporary absence of Jackie, who is hiding beneath the laurels to avoid accolades, etc.
No such thing as a stupid question, they say, except the one that is not asked.

I agree with Marty, - but that doesn't mean that you should always expect sensible answers - not from this
board, anyway.

BTW - do they really say "Stat" in real-life op. theatres, does anyone know? I worked as a hospital porter during one long vac and did several days on theatre duty, but never once did I hear the expression.
Maybe it is YAY/BT.


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#12729 - 12/13/00 12:08 PM Re: stat ?
phil-wieland Offline
stranger

Registered: 09/29/00
Posts: 8
Loc: Pittsburgh PA
Aha. That explains it. I'd guessed the meaning but I wondered what the word actually was. I couldn't find it in the dictionaries I have here (English and American English).

Thanks.


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#12730 - 12/13/00 01:47 PM Re: stat ?
TEd Remington Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 07/17/00
Posts: 3467
Loc: Marion NC
>BTW - do they really say "Stat" in real-life op. theatres

It is very common in emergency rooms to hear a physician give a verbal order for medication and follow it up with stat. In this case the meaning is to give it now, not t.i.d., b.i.d., q.i.d, or at some other interval, because the convention is for those medications to be delivered at a set time of day. The three *.i.d.'s are acronyms for Latin expressions, I will probably misspell them, but here goes: Ter in Die (three times in a day) Bis in Die (twice a day) and Quater in Die (four times a day.) In the hospital setting if a nurse has an order for b.i.d/, he gives the medication once in AM and once in PM. The hospital will actually have a rule as to what the times of day are. Most common is to use 8 AM as the starting time, b.i.d. would be 8 AM and 8 PM, q.i.d. would be 8 AM, 12 noon, 4 PM and 8 PM. There are exceptions where a medication has to be delivered at more even times around the clock and I believe the convention was to have the physician write down the actual times for administration of the dosage. If a physician wanted an immediate dosage followed by regular administration she would say administer 1000 units of penn-V stat then b.i.d. until this guy's rash clears up.

There's also a term for once a day but I've forgotten it.

And different hospitals have different protocols for using stat. as an "order". I remember quite clearly the neurosurgeon who was summoned to the ER at Parkland to attend to JFK later wrote that he first learned of the emergency when he was walking up a flight of stairs and heard a page for Doctor X to report to the ER "stat."

Many years ago I worked as an orderly in an emergency room, and I cannot tell you that I ever heard the word stat used other than as an order for medication. Certainly there were never scenes such as those on television where people go running and banging doors and shoving people out of the way and screaming at the tops of their lungs. It was a lesson I learned very early in life (I began working in the ER when I was 16 or so.) When an emergency occurs, the very worst thing one can do is to hurry, because that can result in a mistake or further injury, even to oneself.

I recently watched an accident scene near my house, and had to explain to a neighbor that the EMT didn't run because it didn't help. In addition to working in the ER, I was also a volunteer rescue squad member for 11 years. To give perspective, one year I had over a thousand "ambulance runs". In those 11 years I never once witnessed or even heard of a situation or incident in which a few seconds made a difference. A few minutes, definitely, but seconds simply don't count, and if I fall and break a leg while running to get to a victim, how have I helped him or her?

stat enough????

_________________________
TEd

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#12731 - 12/13/00 05:03 PM Re: stat ?
belMarduk Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 09/28/00
Posts: 2891
There's also a term for once a day but I've forgotten it.

Why can't they just say DAILY?

And is there a reason they HAVE to use Latin instead of plain ole English. It's not as if they have that many more syllables to deal with. Not only that, they arenít even using the entire words, just abbreviations. I can understand using Latin in some circumstances, when you donít want to alarm a patient before a doctor has had a chance to explain the situation for example, but why do they do it in this case?





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#12732 - 12/13/00 08:07 PM Re: stat ?
Capital Kiwi Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 11/13/00
Posts: 3146
Loc: Northamptonshire, England
La belle (and I'm guessing here) Bel said: And is there a reason they HAVE to use Latin instead of plain ole English.

It's clung on in hospitals because of the imprecision of English and the pressure under which some medical staff work, particularly, I guess, in ERs.

Stat means NOW! Not in five minutes or half an hour.

_________________________
The idiot also known as Capfka ...

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#12733 - 12/13/00 08:22 PM Re: stat ?
belMarduk Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 09/28/00
Posts: 2891
Merci mon Capital mais...

I don't understand is the use of Latin to describe how many times a day a nurse must administer pills.

I am sure doctors and nurses have to LEARN that t.i.d means Ter in Die (three times in a day), likewise for b.i.d. and q.i.d. These are not terms people generally know. So why are they bothering to teach them the abbreviations instead of just saying "give the patient a dose three times in a day" which is no more subject to interpretation than t.i.d. I am sure there are much more important things that they should be concentrating on instead of highbrow vernacular for common phrases.

And how is the word NOW not as clear as STAT?


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#12734 - 12/13/00 08:28 PM Re: stat ?
tsuwm Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 04/03/00
Posts: 10523
Loc: this too shall pass
>And how is the word NOW not as clear as STAT?

clarity is not the issue atall... just look at how they're taught to write prescriptions! here's the thing: how would you feel if you spent more than 10 years and $100,000 American learning how to say "NOW" and "thrice daily"?! <grin>



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#12735 - 12/13/00 08:59 PM Re: stat ?
TEd Remington Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 07/17/00
Posts: 3467
Loc: Marion NC
>And is there a reason they HAVE to use Latin instead of plain ole English?

It harkens back to a day when prescriptions were written in Latin, which was the language of the learned class. There are many more of them that become second nature as one goes through med or nursing school. To this day when taking notes I use a c with a line over it for with (an abbreviation for the Latin word cum) and an s with a line over it for without (sine). And I went to neither med school nor nursing school. I was married to an RN and picked up some bad habits from her.

And that's what these things really are is habit. I've no idea why the medical fraternity holds onto the Latin stuff when the legal profession has made great strides to get rid of many of the phrases they used to toss about with great abandon.

Some things still come through in that field, though. I printed out a copy of the Supreme Court's decision in Bush v. Gore, and one of the first words on the first page is certiorari (let it be certified, I think.) If you go back say 150 to 200 years and try to read a court decision from that era you have to know a lot of Latin to get through it successfully. A part of it is the fact that use of arcane language makes it more difficult for people to fake their way into the profession, I'm certain. But a great deal of it is tradition.

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TEd

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