Engine 52 was off at training and that left us covering their district. First think in the morning the tones went off. We were being dispatched to a stabbing in 52's district.
When we arrived on scene the Barney Fife patrol was already there. They directed me to the top of the stairs in the apartment where, just inside his bedroom, I found my patient.
According to his son the old man was in the late stages of dementia and had been hallucinating. That's when he took a knife and stabbed himself about 3 inches to the left of his belly button. It was very obvious where he had stabbed himself because the fillet knife was still embedded in his abdomen.
While the officers held the hands of my patient I carefully stabilized the knife with bulky dressings and a lot of 2 inch tape. The bleeding had been minimal, at least on the outside, and had already stopped. After taking care of the wound we decided to get a quick check of his vitals. They were all within normal limits.
By that time AMR was there and we packaged him up. On the gurney he was placed into restraints. This was as much for his own protection as for ours. He was obviously willing to stab himself once and we weren't going to take a chance since the knife was well within his reach.
The patient was lucky that he didn't hit anything vital or this call would have been a little more intense.