PHILADELPHIA, PA – Sources from a local hospital are reporting a miracle, after a sample received by the laboratory spontaneously unhemolyzed following a discussion with the nurse.
The sample was drawn in the PICU, sent to the lab, and accessioned by medical laboratory technician Nancy Stewart. “After processing the specimen, I noticed the serum was pink, indicating gross hemolysis,” says Stewart. That meant having to call the PICU to request a new sample. Stewart says it’s the best part of her job. “I mean, who wouldn’t love getting yelled at for something they can’t control?”
But luckily for Stewart, PICU nurse Linda Nelson was in a good mood. “Normally, I would be pretty annoyed,” says Nelson. “I would berate the lab tech, accuse her of sabotage, and refuse to draw a new sample. But this time, instead of fighting, I just apologized and politely asked if she could recheck the sample. If it was still hemolyzed, I would gladly obtain a new specimen.”
“I’ve never had a nurse talk to me like that before,” says Stewart. “You know, like I’m a human being? It was weird.” According to Stewart, the lights in the lab started to flicker, and a mystical blue essence started to emanate from the phone receiver. The ethereal glow moved down her arm to the sample, which began to vibrate and heat up. “When the smoke cleared, I checked the sample again, and miraculously, the hemolysis had cleared up,” says Stewart. “I can’t explain it.”
The incident was reported to the hospital’s quality management department for investigation as a possible process improvement project. Unfortunately, hospital administrator Jean Franklin deemed it to be an anomalous occurrence. “I mean, a nurse being civil to a lab tech? I don’t see that ever happening again.”