Saturday, November 18, 2006

On the first weekend in November the annual Petanque tournament is held. This is a very interesting and enjoyable event for the whole family. The champion emerging after two days of gruelling petanque was Gerhard (pronounced in french) pictured here (top left).

It was a quite international event with contestants from as far afield as England and France attending. No surprises th French won (14 million players in France- mostly Marseilles). The locals did put up some resistance and won the team event.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Pathological fracture

Today I saw a 62 year old male with a complaint of a sore swollen right forearm. He had no trauma history, but has a known alcohol history (has been dry for two years). He started having pain three days ago after working in the garden. On X-ray we can see a transverse fracture of the distal ulna, sometimes called a nightstick fracture (it is usually a defensive injury in assault). There is only slight displacement seen. The bones appear hypodense on the film, consistent with chronic alcohol use, thus predisposing him to pathological fracture. As there is no trauma history the diagnosis is a pathological fracture of the distal ulna. This fracture usually unites easily (even without treatment). The patient was treated with a circular above elbow cast for six weeks.

Saturday, August 19, 2006

Seizure in Mainstreet

These calls are always at inopportune times. A few moths earlier I had to drive out to a farm where a woman had had a myocardial infarction. It was six in the evening when the call came and I scrambled to my Toyota bakkie. Twenty kilometers over very dodgy dirt roads later the diagnosis was made. This has only happened twice so far this year, and far from being an inconvenience you learn to welcome the break from routine

As a small town doctor you are on call 24 hours per day. Usually that doesn’t mean much, but sometimes your life is disrupted. Like a peaceful Saturday morning. This morning. I had just gotten up when there was a frantic knocking at my door. The nurse on duty had received a phone call from one of the shops in town: a tourist was having a seizure right in front of Foodzone in the main street. As I was rushing to the scene, the scene came rushing to me. A convoy of two white bakkies with a gold Peugeot between them came rushing down the hospital driveway. In the end it was merely a case of an overindulgent tourist with alcohol withdrawal, but enough excitement for this month at least.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

All photos on this blog were taken with the Canon Powerhot S3 IS Camera. It is a very good camera with very usefull features and a pleasure to use.
As you know it is flower season in Namakwaland, although spring is stil quite far off. Here are some of the lovely photos from the Sutherland environs. They were taken along the route of the ouberg pass.

Thursday, August 03, 2006

These are the snowpics direct from SA' s coldest spot.

This is a walkaround through the hospital. Small primary care centre with 8 beds, it can handle uncomplicated deliveries and minor trauma. X-ray facilities are available, you should get a radiographer to give you a few tips as you will take the X-rays solo.

The hero seat

Main corridor


Labour room

Paeds resus


Welcome to Sutherland. This is the coldest place in South Africa. This is your community service.

The main purpose of this blog is to provide some insight into the life of a rural doctor in South Africa. I will include many pics to give you the feel of the place, and commentary on daily life and cases.