Doctors Play 'Never Have I Ever'

— YouTuber Siobhan Deshauer, MD, on sleeping through a page, placing an IV, and dirty needle sticks


Join internal medicine and rheumatology specialist Siobhan Deshauer, MD, and her husband as they answer fan questions while playing the game "Never Have I Ever."

Following is a partial transcript (note that errors are possible):

Deshauer: Hey, guys. I'm Siobhan ...

Mark: ... and I'm Mark.

Deshauer: ... and today we're playing Never Have I Ever -- Doctor's Edition.

Mark: ... and you guys are asking the questions, so let's see what they have in store for us.

Deshauer: Okay. The first question: never have I ever slept through a page. Wait, you have?

Mark: Oh, no, no, no.

Deshauer: No. Honestly, pagers are loud and obnoxious and they're designed to wake you up. Like you'd have to be a really deep sleeper.

Mark: Never have I ever stuck myself with a dirty needle.

Deshauer: Ooh.

Mark: I mean, for me, I would say this is probably an "I have never." I was doing some sutures and I actually put the needle right through my glove. It just barely nicked the skin, but it didn't actually draw any blood, so this was not really a high-risk exposure.

Deshauer: I really did have a bad needle stick injury. Ugh, I'm just feeling stressed thinking about it. This is a pretty dramatic case. It was a young person who was found without a pulse outside in the freezing cold, dead of winter. EMS started CPR. They continued doing CPR in the emergency department for like 2 or 3 hours.

The concept is you can't pronounce someone dead when they are cold, because there is a chance that when you warm them up that they could come back to life again and have a pulse. The goal was to find out other ways to warm the person other than just having a blanket over them and sort of heat blowing on them because it wasn't heating them up. We actually were putting in tubes into the chest, into the belly, into the bladder, to circulate warm fluids to try to warm up the internal organs.

My job was to put in a femoral line, so a central line, like I have talked to you guys about in the past. It's like a massive IV, but going into the groin. You can imagine when CPR is ongoing. I was like it was trying to hit a moving target with this needle, and unfortunately in that process I ended up sticking myself, and it was a dirty needle.

Mark: Oh, I remember how scary that was for you.

Deshauer: I was terrified. I think like the adrenaline of the whole situation and then you don't know anything about this person. I don't even think we knew this person's name at this point, so you don't really know anything. You have no one to call, and all of that fear comes in like what if I am going to contract a disease from them.

I immediately went to Occupational Health, and they were great. They drew my blood. They were drawing blood from the patient. They actually started me on PEP [post-exposure prophylaxis].

Mark: In the worst-case scenario this was HIV, medications that would stop it from replicating.

Deshauer: Exactly. But I was fine. The patient actually got a pulse back, which is amazing. It all in all was a good outcome, but I was scared.

Mark: There is a bunch of amazing stories where there was someone who was frozen basically. Just by heating them up and doing CPR, they were able to get a pretty good outcome like at least bring them back to life.

Deshauer: Never have I ever placed an IV.

Mark: I would say technically. Have I ever placed a peripheral IV? No. But I think a central line counts ...

Deshauer: Oh, true.

Mark: ... because it's technically a giant IV.

Deshauer: ... a giant IV.

Mark: It just goes into a really big vein.

Deshauer: Exactly, exactly. Okay, we've got another one here, never ever lied to a patient about how good I was at placing an IV.

Mark: Okay. Definitely never.

Deshauer: Never. Actually, there was a patient, the nurses were having a really tough time getting an IV in, and I happened to be coming by and seeing the patient. They said, "Oh, can you do it, Doctor?" I genuinely laughed and said, "No, like the nurses are so much better at this than us. We really don't get the training. If the nurses can't do it, you don't want me doing it. I'm just going to put one of those big ones in."

Mark: Yeah, never have I ever touched a running IV like to silence an alarm during a conversation without telling the nurse.

Deshauer: Guilty.

Mark: Guilty, guilty.

Deshauer: I have a feeling this is written by a nurse, so I think maybe I don't know if we should be doing that.

Mark: Yeah. Maybe this is something we should stop doing. Usually, it's an occlusion alarm so I'll just kind of run through the IV and just make sure there is no kink in it because ...

Deshauer: ... yeah, like position the patient's arm.

Mark: Yeah, exactly. Maybe we should talk to the nurses.

Deshauer: I think we should ask. You guys got to comment below. Are we doing the wrong thing here? Is this annoying the nurses and we didn't know?

Mark: Yeah. Never have I ever been recognized by a patient.

Deshauer: I have. You know what? It happens in the hospital, in the rheumatology clinic, and even still I'm like I'm surprised because it's almost like two worlds colliding. Like I'm in my clinical mindset and then if I'm not vlogging, I'm not in that YouTube mindset. It's a surprise, but it's a welcomed one. I love it.

Mark: And we love meeting you guys in person. I remember one time that really stands out to me is when we were just walking through the streets of Singapore and we met nurse Nico.

Deshauer: Nico, yes.

Mark: He is like a traveling nurse from the States.

Deshauer: That was really cool.

Mark: Yeah.

Deshauer: And also we were doing the Routeburn Track in New Zealand and we met Ryan. He is a Canadian medical student who was studying in Australia. That was really cool. And another medical student in Kaikōura when we were swimming with these wild dolphins. These situations where you don't expect, and you have these wonderful connections.

Mark: It makes the world feel so small.

Deshauer: Yeah, I agree. I love it.

Siobhan Deshauer, MD, is an internal medicine resident in Toronto. Before medicine, she was a violinist, which is why her YouTube channel is called Violin MD.