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takestheweatherpersonally  asked:

Hello! I have a character who's five years old and I was wondering what difference that makes medically, if that makes sense? Both like how medical workers will act with her and explain things given she's very young and how that would factor into her medical care, like basic checkups or diagnosing illnesses and stuff like that. Sorry if this is too broad or vague, and thank you for all you do!

Hey there! Congrats on being Janey on the spot with the inbox and  being the first ask of June! 

So, one quick note. I come from EMS, and particularly now from a critical care service that handles a lot of kids. But I’m assuming for the purpose of this ask that this child is not and has never been critically ill. Okay? Okay! 

Pediatrics is its own specialty for a reason, and I have bundles to learn about it. There are all sorts of things that are different in pediatric medicine (and all sorts that of things that are shockingly similar!). 

First, let’s talk about “furniture.” As you’ll remember from having once been a child, peds doctors offices and clinics, and even ERs, are often bright, colorful and cheery places. Kids get offered toys and lollipops, they get to see special movies. Doc McStuffins is a very common sight in peds hospitals and waiting rooms. 

I’ve heard of peds hospitals that have different mural styles for different wards: one hallway that’s done all up in a baseball theme, another in a princesses and dragons theme, another in trains. 

Oh! When little kids get a nebulizer treatment, oftentimes now the mask they get the treatment through looks like a dragon and it’s awesome and I wish they came in adult sizes. 

Providers are also, by necessity, gentler with kids. You can’t argue with a kid and tell them to hold still; they’re going to squirm whether the shot is good for them or not. (Don’t get me started on vaccinations, please.) 

In terms of the medicine, as someone who works on a pediatric critical care unit, there are two ways you can look at kids. 

A) They’re just little adults. 

B) They are definitely not little adults. 

Both are true. They’re little adults in that they have the exact same functions as adults. They’re not little adults in that there are big social development changes that go on at various ages and there are some physiological changes (mostly that come up in very technical fields) that are different. 

For adults, a lot of the med doses are standardized; for kids, they’re almost all weight-based. A 5 year old should weigh roughly 20kg/45lbs (and there’s a really neat method called Handtevy that will give you the estimated weight of any kid up to 10 yrs old based just on their age; it’s stupendously cool and exactly the kind of thing pediatric critical care medics nerd out about!). 

IVs are almost always smaller in kids, but that’s because they’re little. I’ve also seen ERs use whole teams to get a single IV in a child, including someone singing happy songs while other people stab the child with needles. (It seemed seriously Clockwork Orange to me, but I have a feeling it’s data-driven with good outcomes, so who knows?) 

I get the feeling you’re asking about pediatrics in general and not pediatric critical care, so I’m going to try and focus on the general practice stuff, which is that kids who don’t get seriously ill tend to do pretty well. 


Some things they might have done at the doctor’s office if they’re not there for a specific illness: 

  • Vitals: blood pressure, pulse, oxygen saturation, temperature
  • Height/weight checks. 
  • Scoliosis checks. 
  • Vision and hearing checks. 
  • Immunization checks. (I’d say just check the immunization schedule recommended by your region; the CDC’s is here and is as good as any.) 
  • Allergy scratch-testing 


Common reasons a 5 y.o. will go to the doctor: 

  • Earaches and ear infections
  • Fever (usually the flu or an ear infection) 
  • Vomiting 
  • Asthma. This is incredibly common in some areas, and I’ve worked in a few. 
  • the snot. so much the snot. 
  • Something lost in the nose 
  • Something swallowed 
  • Mechanical injury (broken wrist, bumped head, etc.)  It’s common for good parents to be suspected of child abuse for having clumsy kids. 

Kids tend to bounce – both literally and figuratively. They’re little, but pretty tough and hard to injure, and when they do get hurt they heal pretty quickly. They’re still growing, so they do well. 

That’s all I can think of about pediatrics when it’s 2 in the morning and I worked a 14+ hour day! 

Congrats on getting there first and I hope this was what you needed. 

xoxo, Aunt Scripty 

(Samantha Keel) 

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anonymous asked:

I need to know the basics of electric shocks! I have a character who can control electricity, and in a PIVOTAL SCENE I want him to electrocute someone enough that it knocks them unconscious, but then, I don't know how long realistically they will remain unconscious and if that causes, you know, permanent brain damage or anything. (Which would be bad.)

Hey there nonny! 

There’s a neat shortcut to this that I think you might be able to get away with. But first, a little bit of background. 

Electricity, as I’m sure you know, wants to travel the path of least resistance. So the contact points – the “entrance” and “exit” wounds – are going to make a big difference in how the electricity affects someone. 

Electricity that crosses the chest can kill, because the heart is essentially a mechanical pump run by an electrical signal, and electricity that interferes with that signal can cause fatal miscommunication within the heart, known as ventricular fibrillation. (Defibrillation was actually called countershock at first, because a lot of electrical line workers were getting shocked, which was putting them in cardiac arrest, and the countershock would hopefully get them back!) 

We don’t want to kill the character. That would be bad. 

We do want them to be unconscious. That would be good! 

So how can we get electricity to take a quick path that doesn’t stop the heart but does affect the level of consciousness? 

The head. Enter on one side, exit on the other. What you’ll get is a seizure. 

It’s done fairly routinely as electroconvulsive therapy – electricity inducing seizures. I’ll admit to not being an expert, meaning I can’t give you voltage/amperage lists of what does and doesn’t work (and I don’t know how much control your character has.) But realize that idiot doctors have accidentally defibrillated their own heads, with a quick seizure and no ill effects later on. So there’s that. 

Now, a seizure is different from unconsciousness! But the brain has uncontrolled electrical activity – it basically shuts down and reboots (with some dramatic shaking and voiding of bladders and biting of tongues to boot). 

But what happens after is that the brain reboots. It’s called a postictal state. The character will be dazed, confused, and disoriented. They’ll likely be really drowsy for at least a few minutes, and as they wake up they won’t quite know what happened. 

This is the closest I can come, dear nonny, to what you need. It’s not exact, but it’s close, and has a period of unconsciousness. 

I hope this helps your story! 

xoxo, Aunt Scripty

(Samantha Keel)

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anonymous asked:

I have a question about vaccines, well, more about viruses and diseases in general. I have a character that ends up getting trapped back in time (medieval times), and I was wondering how his body would react to being in a whole other time. Would the vaccines he would have gotten in our time as a child and such be of any help when it comes to his body’s immune system dealing with the new time? Or would have the viruses mutated and change so much over all that time that it’d be of no use to him?

Hey there nonny! 

So viruses play the evolutionary game known as “How much can I change each time I copy myself while still being able to copy myself more later?” Basically, they have adapted to a high rate of transcription errors to ensure that when they are copied, they have some form of variability. The cold and influenza viruses are massively good at this. It’s why you keep getting “the cold” over and over: it’s a different strain each time around. 

(There’s actually a drug that works by pushing the transcription error rate to be high enough that the RNA can’t reliably copy itself and the virus literally messes itself up to death. Science is Freaking Neat™ .) 

So viral diseases in general are going to be very different from the things they’ve had in the past, though particularly with bacteria, the “safer” / less murdery strains were around in the past, mostly because we put a lot of evolutionary pressure on bacteria with the (over-)use of antibiotics. 

It’s also… so Bubonic Plague? That thing that wiped out a third of Europe (and lots of other places too)? That’s curable with a good course of antibiotics. 

All of that said, your character has a major advantage over their medieval counterparts. 

They understand germ theory

Look at a medieval person, even a doctor, and tell them that diseases are caused by germs and bacteria and viruses and they will think you have six heads and need to be taken away. They didn’t have the optics power to see the microorganisms, so they didn’t know about them. 

Your character will do better than average simply by washing their hands as frequently as possible and washing their food, and trying to get water from as far up the river (ie before it’s been pooped in) as they can. 

Meanwhile, their neighbors will be convinced that disease is the result of the Evil Eye or of a “miasma” of evil. Doctors might diagnose an imbalance of the humors and bloodlet people. 

This is legitimately what smart people believed and were taught. And some day they’ll say “Holy cow, the 21st century Earthanoids believed and did what?!” in shock and disbelief. 

In any case. Their vaccines may protect them from some of the viruses going around at the time, but they also have the educational advantage that the locals don’t have. 

Best of luck with your story! 

xoxo, Aunt Scripty

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Hey guys, I just released a new ebook on Kindle/ Amazon. It’s titled The Prince and the Magician.

It’s an original, LGBTQ fairy tale:

“ ‘Love is simply politics.’

A fact his father takes to heart… and expects Prince Amadeus to do as well. Yet when Amadeus meets his betrothed, Princess Isela, he cannot help but wonder if that is all that love is about.

As the days go by and the wedding grows closer, Amadeus feels that perhaps his father is right. Just when he is ready to give up, he meets someone who changes everything he knows about love: Cal, the Magician.

Now, Prince Amadeus and Cal must fight so that they can be together. Will they win against those who will stop at nothing to make sure the marriage goes through?”

A few things I think people might like:
-Princess Isela is a lesbian and her story also plays a part.
-Cal is a from New Spain, aka one of the first mestizo Mexicans.
-Part of Amadeus’ struggle is dealing with his Catholic background and his gay identity during the Renaissance.

I’m a Mexican author trying to contribute to a nonexistent genre (LGBTQ fantasy). Support would be greatly appreciated not only for me, but to get more stories like this out there.

It’s available as an ebook on Kindle and I’ll have it up for paperback soon as well.

kennaisreading  asked:

Hi, love your blog! I don't know if you have opinions on ebooks but I was wondering if you could post about a new project called Standard Ebooks? It is volunteers making and editing ebooks of classic literature in the public domain. Many online sources for these books are full of errors but SE has high standards, so that you won't lose the story trying to understand the text. There is a wanted list for people who want to help and over 100 books completed for people to read already! Thank you!

Sounds like a great cause. Here’s the link in case anyone wants to help out:
https://standardebooks.org/

And if you just want to *read* ebooks, check out their lovely collection of classics!

“What is your problem?”

Steve blinked, looking up from his book. His eyes met Tony Stark, his teammate, and a friend, standing in front of him, looking stern and irritated. He even crossed arms on his chest, already looking defensive.

Steve looked around the room, making sure, that Tony was addressing him. What was his problem? He didn’t know. He was just reading a book. Was that a crime? Maybe it was in the Avengers Tower, where every thing was high tech and he was expected to use tablets and holographic screens.

“Sorry, Tony,” Steve sighed, “using an ebook is not my style,” he said, remembering the shiny new ebook Tony had given him and Steve used twice, before stashing it away. Nothing could replace the feeling of a real book.

Keep reading

anonymous asked:

Hi, love your blog! I've got a character in a slightly Victorian era novel who breaks her tibia. She's a young doctor so she has some experience, and she has set some bones before. However, it's not just one break in the bone and she's about a days ride from her medical supplies. Would it be possible for her to need an amputation if her leg isn't set properly? If so, how long would she realistically have before she is too far gone for even an amputation?

Hey there nonny! 

Victorian era brokey-leggy-thingy, eh? Let’s take a look… 

Hmm. It seems like you’ve got a bit of a pickle there, you do. 

Yes, it’s possible for a broken leg to require an amputation. This is most likely if the leg is broken in such a way that the bone comes through the skin, what’s called a compound fracture. This is a Big Scary Injury not because of the degree of damage to the bone, but because the bone then becomes vulnerable to infection (osteomyelitis). Amputation may have been the treatment for it at the time, although I freely admit that Victorian medicine is not my jam. 

However, if the fracture is closed, I think she’s just looking at a long period of time in a cast. She may be far from definitive supplies, but any physic of the day could cobble together an effective splint out of what’s available, especially if she’s got help. 

I think the question to ask yourself about this injury is: what disability do you want her to have, and why is it important to the story and to her specifically? The medicine is all well and good, but what’s important in storytelling is how characters change. If she breaks her leg but doesn’t amputate it, how does she change? (Is she stronger? Weaker? Afraid of the thing that she was doing when it was broken?) 

If they do amputate her leg, how does that change her? 

Best of luck with your story. 

xoxo, Aunt Scripty

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anonymous asked:

Who is the author of the young wizard books? It sounds really interesting from the ml au you put made

Diane Duane!  She’s worked on a lot of stuff over the years, including official Star Trek novelizations, several TV shows, etc.  The Young Wizards books themselves are FANTASTIC, an exploration of magic that is basically its own branch of science, and the point of said magic is to, in some way, shape, or form, make the universe a better place.

I recommend getting the New Millennium editions on ebook from her website here as the series was started in the 80s, and new books are continuing to be written (she’s currently working on book 11) (you can get the first nine books in a box set from that site, and you can fine the 10th book, Games Wizards Play, on Amazon easily).  Because she kept technology current with whatever was out at the time each book was written, but only a few years have passed within the timespan of the books, there were some crazy jumps in there.  So recently she went back and heavily edited the earlier books to bring the technology all in line, fix a few plot holes, and heavily retcon some things that had been made obsolete by advances in medical knowledge in books 5 and 6 to make them more accurate.

Finally, the book series itself just has some of the most gorgeous writing of any series I’ve ever read.  The prose alone is simply beautiful and takes my breath away just from how fantastically written it is.  With that, I’ll leave you with one of my favorite (non-spoiler) bits of prose from the books, The Wizard’s Oath (which, admittedly, changes slightly for each person taking it to more accurately reflect them, but this is the version that resonates most with me):

“In Life’s name and for Life’s sake, I say that I will use the Art for nothing but the service of that Life. I will guard growth and ease pain. I will fight to preserve what grows and lives well in its own way; and I will change no object or creature unless its growth and life, or that of the system of which it is part, are threatened. To these ends, in the practice of my Art, I will put aside fear for courage, and death for life, when it is right to do so — till Universe’s end.” - So You Want To Be A Wizard, Diane Duane.

starsandsteelandbrokenglass  asked:

Hello! So I have a couple characters who are branded, like the equivalent of cattle branding, on their inner forearms, back of neck, and chest, respectively. Do those seem like reasonable places for that injury? Any idea what those wounds, treatment, and/or recovery would look like? And thank you so much for all the hard work you do!

Hey there nonny. 

First: I hope you realize that this is a real thing that has really happened to real people. (I’m sure that you do. What I’m saying is, make sure that what you write is respectful of those who have, or whose ancestors have, gone through that experience.) 

Yes, these are likely places for “branding” on a human. Others might include the meat of the deltoid. 

The wounds are thermal burns. The treatment is cooling water and time. Treatment is unlikely to come from those giving the brands, but those being branded will likely have their own salve. 

You haven’t given me any clues about setting, so this is just going off of what I know. (I’m also not a botanist.) 

Honey has been used by a great many groups as a burn ointment, or they may have developed their own form of salve or cream. As long as the burns are closed, they might use mud, though this is a bad idea – but it will cool the burning aspects of the pain. Mint is a likely ingredient. And, of course, plenty of cool water. 

Good luck with your story! 

xoxo, Aunt Scripty

(Samantha Keel) 

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anonymous asked:

do you buy paperbooks or hard cover copies?

Neither if I can avoid it.

Have a story:
For christmas my girl made me a gift card and told me I could buy any books I want up to the amount of 250€. She knows I’m a geek for books so naturally she thought I’d buy a couple of Barnes & Noble Leatherbound Classics that I was gushing about. But then I went to amazon, downloaded a couple of new cheap ebooks that have been on sale (I think around 20 books for a little over 30€), ordered pizza from her favorite Italian for around 25€ and told her she should keep the rest because that would be everything I needed. No one will get me to pay a fortune just to have a hardcover book in my collection. 

Listen, I love leatherbound classics. I love paperbacks. I LOVE books. And that’s the essence. I love books. I don’t care if they are professional, amateur, paperback, ebooks, hardcovers or pdf. I just love to read, period. So I love any kind of books but I prefer ebooks and pdfs the most because they are just easier to carry around and they don’t take as much space as other books.

phoebeophelia  asked:

First, thank you so much for this blog. Even if you don’t get to my ask, you’ve already helped me so much! So. The healing magic in my world is largely limited to imaging. They have sanitation and herbal medicine, but their materials are low-tech. Glass and resin but no plastic and only very small amounts of metal. Character (a large, healthy adult) receives rabbit punch to base of skull. He is confused at first, then unconscious in minutes. (1 of 2)

The healers immobilize him and take him to their clinic. Swelling gradually makes his symptoms worse over the course of about three hours. Eventually he would be unable to breathe on his own. Does this sound about right for a spinal cord injury? Would there be anything the healers could do for him at this low tech, or is everyone just waiting for him to recover or die on his own? Thanks again! (2 of 2)

Hey there! Thanks for the ask. (It feels good to work on fresh asks again!!) 

No, this does not sound like a spinal cord injury. If this was a spinal cord injury, he would stop breathing immediately, because the base of the brain is high up enough that a spinal cord injury will cut off innervation of the muscles that keep the character breathing. SCIs tend to have instant effects, especially when it comes to paralysis. 

(As for the location of the injury, the “base of the skull” is C1-C2. The rule is “C5 stays alive”; C5 is one of the lowest neck vertebrae. SCIs above C5 are fatal without a ventilator, and even then, they’re often fatal anyway.) 

What it does sound similar to, however, is a subarachnoid hemorrhage. This is when the character blacks out, wakes up, then rapidly returns to unconsciousness as the bleeding in the skull puts pressure on the brain. 

With no way to vent the pressure short of crude brain surgery (with an almost 100% chance of infection), no, your healers cannot fix this. However, just because he gets incredibly sick, doesn’t mean he’ll die from it. He may just have brain damage and ongoing issues with seizures. 

What I would really hate would be if your character was just unconscious and recovered back to their full self. It betrays realism and your reader’s trust: that things have consequences. I know that you know this, but this character needs some form of change because of what happened to them. Otherwise, what’s the point? 

Medically speaking, I would suggest starting with the #coma tag, the #tbi tag and the #head injury tag and going from there. (You’ll see this post on those lists; scroll past.) 

Best of luck!! 

xoxo, Aunt Scripty

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When my first book Glitter on the Garland went on sale as on eBook on New Year’s Eve, it was a dream come true.  But I honestly thought it would just be this little thing that no one would pay much attention to.  I wasn’t prepared for the number of people who demanded a physical copy, or that just six months later I would have my own table at a MM author signing event! 

Thank you so, so much to everyone who has supported me so far! You can get your own copy of my book in the link above, or it’s also available from Amazon US!!!