Quick Thinking Saves Life at Penn Highlands Elk

July 03, 2015


 

“He wouldn’t be living,” exclaims Arlene Park, the wife of a patient who suffered a lacerated liver. “The doctors and nurses did everything they could, and God bless them.”

Last March William Park came to the Penn Highlands Elk emergency room in severe pain. A CT scan revealed that Bill’s liver had perforated.

“Thank God Dr. [Maurus] Sorg was in the ER that night. He’s a great diagnostician.”

Arlene is grateful for Dr. Sorg’s quick action. He knew that Bill would not live through a transport to a trauma hospital, so Dr. Sorg called on the expertise of surgeons Dr. Narayana Subramany and Dr. K.C. Joseph. The two operated on Bill, who had lost three liters of blood and was losing blood pressure. They packed the liver to stop the hemorrhaging and discovered a tumor, which was responsible for the tear. Following the surgery, Bill was admitted. A winter storm prevented transport via helicopter or ambulance for the next several hours.

“Vickie Jamison was the charge nurse, and she was fantastic,” remembers Arlene. “She and Dr. McKimm kept in touch with the Pittsburgh hospital constantly.”

While Bill waited to be transported, the staff kept Arlene and her family in good spirits. “They had us laughing.”

After 16 hours at Penn Highlands Elk, Bill finally made it to Pittsburgh and stayed there for two months in the intensive care unit.

“The doctors there said Bill would not have made it, had it not been for Dr. Subramany,” explains Arlene.

As Arlene remembers the experience, she calls it humbling. “I’ve never seen people pray so hard. The compassion was fabulous.” She shares their story because, “it is never enough to say ‘Thank You.’”