Running on Empty

A fever and cough strike a busy, young mom. But this is no routine case of influenza.

“You better see this one,” my ER nurse, Elsa, urged. “Too pale, too pale.” I had already sent in Jeff, my medical student, for what seemed like a routine case: a 30-something woman complaining of cough, low-grade fever and fatigue for a week. I reread the chart: pulse 114 (a tad high), fever 100.4, good blood pressure and oxygen saturation near normal at 96 percent. This sure looked like the flu. Hustling over, I found Jeff diligently noting his findings in a small notebo...

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