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 Post subject: In Army burn unit, difficult recoveries bring deep bonds
PostPosted: Mon Jul 23, 2007 9:22 am 
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In Army burn unit, difficult recoveries bring deep bonds

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To Chung, it looked as if someone had smoked 100 packs of cigarettes in 10 minutes.

If this soldier -- the one who had escaped -- had so much lung damage, what about the men who had been trapped?

He examined them and answered his own question.

Their lungs were worse.

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 23, 2007 12:38 pm 
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Some stories and some realities should never come together. This is one example of that. What a horrific nightmare that war brings, especially when new protective technology and medical methods can keep people alive longer and treat wounds that would have never in the past have been treatable. Sounds like a humane form of human experimentation on what you can do to a human body and still survive. Statistics.

The punishment goes from patient to doctor to family as the trauma of one severe injury to the next is repeated over and over again. Plus to justify it, you have to get permission to operate from family. The whole thing is just nightmare making and no way for people to have to live. When will the insanity end?

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Chung woke from a quick nap on his office couch the morning after the five badly burned soldiers arrived, and walked down the hall to check on them.

All were stable. But the news quickly turned grim.

One soldier went into shock. His heart, lungs and kidneys failed. He died without regaining consciousness.

With burns, Chung says, patients can rally, then suddenly take a turn for the worse -- all the while dealing with excruciating pain.

"I can't think of a more devastating injury," he says. "In the most tragic instances a lot of us say to ourselves ... sometimes life is worse than death."

Of the five burn patients, one was transferred out of intensive care.

The "hero" was rebounding, too. Then an infection set in -- and he died.

Within three weeks, four of the five were gone.

Chung had lost patients before, but each one, he says, leaves him shaken.

"You walk a tightrope," he says. "I tell the family members that they need to be realistic. At the same time, I don't want to be the person to take away hope. How can you justify giving up on anybody?"
Sounds too much like the German experiments on Jews, except this is on volunteers.

This is a real life horror movie we can't close our eyes on and hope it will go away. This is one we have the power to stop. All we have to do is commit to ending war. It may be our hardest obstacle to overcome, but surely our sanity and reason can persevere over this kind of human tragedy that has no end.

Surely we can come to terms with ourselves, our anger, hatred and greed, our nonchalant acceptance of human misery as inevitable? Or is that the real horror movie we want to close our eyes on and hope and pray it goes away?

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 23, 2007 1:07 pm 
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Surely we can come to terms with ourselves, our anger, hatred and greed, our nonchalant acceptance of human misery as inevitable? Or is that the real horror movie we want to close our eyes on and hope and pray it goes away?



As I read this report, I wondered if Bush/Cheney/Rice or any of the other architects of this horrible war had ever visited this burn center. My bet would be on the NO side. If I was a religious person and thought prayers would make a difference, I'd be on my knees 24/7 asking whatever deity I believed in to please intercede, and my prayer wouldn't be for those architects, either. :evil:
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"Democrats work to help people who need help.
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That's all there is to it."

~Harry S. Truman


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 10, 2007 8:57 am 
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Marine Cpl. Jacob Schick, 25, of Terrytown lost a leg in a roadside bomb in Iraq. He is being featured in an HBO movie September 9 on amputee soldiers. He was 22 when he was injured. Schick said winding his way through the healthcare maze to get his benefits has been frustrating. "To get anything done, it is just horrible," said Schick.

[url=http://blog.nola.com/times-picayune/2007/09/veterans_health_care_system_fa.html]Veterans' health care system fails Gretna Marine
[/url]

Marine Cpl. Jacob Schick says he was ready to die in Iraq. He wasn't prepared to come home in pieces.
The bomb that tore through the floor of his Humvee in the fall of 2004 shredded his legs and left arm. Forty-six surgeries later, Schick is an amputee still learning to cope with physical limitations that as a star high school athlete he never dreamed he would face.

Perhaps just as daunting has been learning to navigate the veterans' health care system, which he says demeans the sacrifice of all veterans.

"When you have to deal with the VA (Veterans Affairs) or TRICARE (the federal health insurance program), you feel beaten down," Schick said. "You are a number, and you feel like a number. It's a total, total beat-down."

Schick, 25, who grew up in Texas and Louisiana and now lives in Gretna, is one of the 10 injured veterans featured in an HBO film, "Alive Day Memories: Home from Iraq," that airs tonight. The title of the documentary, produced by "Sopranos" star James Gandolfini, refers to the date that the injured narrowly escape death and realize that they are still alive.


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ARE ANY OF THE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATES MAKING STATEMENTS ABOUT WHAT THEY'LL SEE IS DONE FOR WOUNDED VETERANS IF THEY'RE ELECTED?

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"Democrats work to help people who need help.
That other party, they work for people who don't need help.
That's all there is to it."

~Harry S. Truman


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