Hospital Live-Tweets Open-Heart Surgery


Many moons ago, on a late-night whim, I decided to live-tweet my umpteenth watching of the movie "La Bamba." Just before Ritchie (Lou Diamond Phillips) launches into his lacerating, rock-n-roll version of the Son Jarocho folk song in Brooklyn, he says "Here's a bit of a rattle snake." That line still gives me chills, as does the following guitar lick. And don't even get me started on the Santo & Johnny-laced ending, unless you want to see a grown man cry.

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Live-tweeting one of your favorite childhood movies may seem ambitious, but there's always going to be someone to one up you, like the medical team from Memorial Hermann Medical Center who live-tweeted double-bypass open-heart surgery and totally upstaged me.

As the beating heart of an anonymous 57-year-old male patient lay exposed on the operating table, the Texas hospital's Twitter account, @houstonhospital, was pumping out tweets like this:

DNEWS VIDEO: MODERN MEDICINE AND TECH Patient is supine, arms padded/tucked at side, leg bolster under legs to expose saphenous veins, roll is placed under chest. #mhopenheart – Memorial Hermann (@houstonhospital) February 21, 2012

The account's #mhopenheart hashtag invited those tuning in to pose questions to a present cardiologist during the morning's procedure. Also tweeted were surgical updates, Twitpic photos and a helmet-cam video feed for followers to watch while lingering over their bowls of Cheerios.

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Wielding the scalpel was cardiovascular and thoracic surgeon, Dr. Michael P. Macris, who stitched up the procedure in roughly two hours.

Not a bad performance, considering the hospital's 5,728 followers and more were potentially watching from Twitterverse's virtual operating room gallery. From that vantage point, at least no one had to worry about Junior Mints being dropped into the open chest cavity.

via Yahoo News

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