When a critical patient comes in they are a set of vital signs. They are heart rhythms on a monitor. They are skin color. They are mental status. They are bleeding needing to be controlled.
They are lab results. They are xray and scan results. They become something that has to be intubated quickly. They need IVs and central lines. They need fluids. Often times, lots of medications and infusions to keep them alive.
They are foleys and ET tubes and nasal or gastric tubes. They can be chest tubes and splints. They are blood infusions and rapid infusers and ventilators.
They are ten people surrounding them, with doctors shouting orders. They are respiratory therapists, lab techs, xray techs, nurses, pharmacists, EMTs.
They are a body that we do things to and has things done to it. Eventually they are
either stable or lifeless. They become human to everyone when their loved one stands by their bedside, holding their hand, a tear running down their face. They become somebody that someone loves.