I don’t think I would admit this to my colleagues, but I find some of the expressions used in the ICU to be kind of heartwarming, if not downright charming.
For example, when someone is about to be extubated and the nurse might say, “I really don’t think he’s gonna fly.” The vision of a coughing, sputtering extubated patient turns into this:
Or when someone is “bucking the vent” (which means the patient is breathing over the ventilator) the sick, struggling patient turns becomes this:
Or my absolute favorite, “The Renal Player.” This simply means a patient who has kidney problems. Whenever I hear this, I picture a bunch of dialysis patients sitting around playing poker in Las Vegas.