24 March 2015

Evil has a Name

And that name is “incentive spirometer” (pictured). This is another method used by healthcare personnel to torture you after surgery. Here, the idea is to inhale slowly and make the little blue plunger rise as far as possible. They say the point is to make sure you breathe enough to prevent pneumonia; I say the point is to make you suffer even more than you are already.

Just imagine: you’ve had your chest cut open, your sternum sliced apart, your heart cut into and sewn back up and THEN the nurse wants you to inhale when you can barely get in enough air to speak. AND you have to inhale through it ten times an hour EVERY hour you’re awake.

The ICU nurse told me I had to be able to reach at least 750 before they would discharge me. That didn’t happen. I was barely able to reach 500 while in the hospital. (To put it in context, today I tried it and made it up to 3000 before having to stop.)

P.S. I never figured out what the “incentive” was in this spirometer. It’s not like I got a piece of cherry pie or anything.

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