Adapted from a speech made by Mauricio Silva, M.D., associate medical director, LAOH and medical director, Urgent Care.
Thursdays are surgery days for Dr. Mauricio Silva. Although every day holds its own promise of healing, each one is different. Here, Dr. Silva shares what one Thursday looked like for him and his patients.
"It is going to be another busy day at Los Angeles Orthopaedic Hospital. Six children were scheduled for surgery. Now, with referrals and emergencies, there will be 10. Starting at 7:00 a.m., children begin to arrive, all with a common need - a healing hand.
First comes Araya. Six months before, she was hit by a car while crossing the street. Today's operation will remove the metal we originally used to fix her leg. Her mother tells me that, thanks to us, Araya is back to playing basketball, which is her passion. This makes me smile.
Some success stories will begin today. For an entire year, Alexus has been told by many doctors that the pain in his left hip is just a sprain. In fact, his hip had deformed because his growth cartilage was weak. Can you imagine having pain for more than a year and not knowing why? Happily, we can correct for this condition and treat the hip to prevent it from degenerating in the future.
THIRD QUARTER 2011
Later, I see Chelsie, who shattered an ankle falling off a skateboard. She waited three weeks to come in - because she had no means of transportation to get to the hospital. Her ankle has already begun to heal, and the bones will need to be re-broken, cleaned and put back in place. But, in the end, she will recover fully.
Robert is here because he rode his bicycle into a wall and broke a kneecap in several places. He's broken bones before he says, and tells me not to worry - this is nothing!
The day continues, and eventually all surgeries are complete. Around midnight, before going home, I visit my patients rooms to make sure that all are doing fine. They are - some of them are resting comfortably, some are talking to their family, some are sleeping. Most importantly, all are healing. Thats when it hits me. This is what a regular day at Los Angeles Orthopaedic Hospital is all about.
That's when it hits me. Children who receive our care and whose lives are changed, in small ways or big ways, by what we do every day. Today, 10 more children joined the millions before them who have benefited from Los Angeles Orthopaedic Hospitals labor of love over the last 100 years. It was a good day."