A technologist is about to perform a small bowel series (SBS) on a 72 year old male patient who comes to the x-ray department via stretcher. The patient tells the radiographer that they cannot stand nor sit up due to recent left hip surgery. The patient is moved onto the x-ray table in a supine position & a preliminary “scout” image is taken. After checking with the radiologist the radiographer is instructed to “begin the exam.” The technologist fills a cup with barium, places a straw inside & instructs the patient to turn their head and “drink” from the straw. The technologist tells the patient that after the cup is done he will take a series of images. After approximately half of the barium is consumed the patient stops & complains of nausea. The technologist notices that the patient is sweating & begins to cough a bit. The technologist asks the patient if he thinks he is going to “throw up.” The patient turns his head & immediately begins to vomit. Although the vomiting quickly stops, the patient now appears to be taking shallow breaths & does not respond to the technologist. The radiographer hurries out of the room to find the nurse assigned to the x-ray department.
Questions to Ponder:
2. If you were the technologist, what would you have done differently?
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