I had my second prenatal checkup yesterday. It was less invasive than the first one -- I got poked, pricked and Pap-ped last time -- but took a little longer because we all had to go through the PGI before we got to see the JC.
"Dugay kaayo ang PGI, doc," the nurse in charge explained in a near-whisper to the JC when the latter spotted the tall pile of records going the PGI's way.
I couldn't help laughing while I recounted the experience to my husband. It made me remember those days when I was the intern holding up the queue, making my SOAP, nodding sagely at the patients' tales, dispensing advice like I actually knew what I was talking about. Well, to some extent, I did know what I was talking about; it's just different when you have actually been the patient.
Part of the reason why the PGI took a long time with each patient was that he would review the patients' records before asking them to come inside the cubicle. I appreciated that, would have done the same thing myself. When I took my seat in front of the table, he had already noted down my lab results. (Hemoglobin a teenie weenie tenth of a g/dL on the low side -- mea culpa, Tita Tonz. I am religiously taking my iron now.)
"Your baby's heart is ticking strongly, ma'am," the PGI assured me with a wide smile. It took him all of 6 seconds to get my baby's heart rate. Times ten? I almost asked with a smirk. One is really supposed to get heart rate by counting for a full minute. 15x4 is secretly acceptable. 6x10 is the mark of an intern who is either desperately in a hurry or just short of due diligence. But I didn't mind; my baby was unlikely to have an arrhythmia anyway. I only raised an eyebrow later, when I learned that I'd been charged P50 for the use of the Doppler.
I was in the PGI's cubicle for around 10 minutes. My consult with the JC barely lasted one. She quickly scanned my labs, asked a few questions, and told me to come back next month.
"And that's why I didn't go for prenatal checkups until my 20th week," I told Aivan.