Now and then, amid the stories of financial conflict, medical errors
and political intrigue that so often undermine health care, comes a
story of the miraculous, where patients in impossible conditions not
only survive, but thrive, due to the skill and resources of many
dedicated clinicians, due to luck and due to who knows what
extraordinary circumstances that are still beyond our understanding.
The New York Times has a story like this today.
On December 7th, Alcides Moreno and his brother Edgar, window washers,
fell 47 stories down the side of the Upper East Side apartment building
they were working on. His brother was killed instantly, but Alcides
survived, consuming 24 units of blood and 19 units of plasma. In a
coma, he went through 9 orthopedic operations, and then amazingly – I’m
not making this up – awoke on Christmas Day.
incredible still, Mr. Moreno is now on a path to full recovery, at
least from the looks of it, walking and talking as he did before his
fall. This has prompted Dr. Philip Barie, the chief of the Division of
Critical Surgery at the hospital where Mr. Moreno is being treated to
comment, “If you believe in miracles, this would be one.”
A David Bowie movie, anyone? Check out this story.