Vital Signs: Life-or-Death Drive

A boy is rushed to the ER after falling and 
rupturing his kidney. With no pediatric surgeon 
on staff, his doctor faces a difficult decision.

By Tony Dajer|Sunday, October 23, 2011
He burst into my emergency room and hurried toward me: a tall, square-shouldered man with his young son squeezed tightly to his chest. “This way,” I said. “You’re OK, pal; you’re OK.” The child looked about 6 and appeared unhurt. “We don’t know what happened,” the father began as he eased his boy onto a stretcher. “He and his friends were playing on the sidewalk. It was getting dark. They said he fell through a metal basement-delivery ...

The full text of this article is available to Discover Magazine subscribers only.

Subscribe and get 10 issues packed with:
  • The latest news, theories and developments in the world of science
  • Compelling stories and breakthroughs in health, medicine and the mind
  • Environmental issues and their relevance to daily life
  • Cutting-edge technology and its impact on our future
Already a subscriber? Register now!
Registration is FREE and takes only a few seconds to complete. If you are already registered on, please log in.