The Boston medical community has been working around the clock following Monday’s explosions at the Boston Marathon finish line, which have left three dead and more than 170 injured.
Mass General Head of Trauma Dr. George Velmahos said in a press conference Tuesday one of the proudest moments of his life was to see “endless doctors come in all over from MGH” in an organized fashion. “I think it was an amazing response,” he said. “We keep pushing forward.”
Hospitals from all around the city have been rising to the occasion, however, treating those in dire need. Below is a list of medical heroes, including Velmahos, and hospitals who have been helping victims in the wake of Monday’s tragedy.
The Boston Medical Center received 23 patients following Monday’s blast, including one 5-year-old boy still in critical condition. The team has performed seven amputations, after finding pieces of concrete, wood, metal and plastic embedded in the bodies of victims.
The hospital’s Chief of Trauma Surgery Dr. Peter Burke told the Boston Globe eight patients will be operated on again Wednesday, and that one or two patients may also be released. “I will not be happy until they are home,” he said. “I will not be satisfied.”
Boston’s Children’s Hospital took in 10 victims, ranging in age from two to twelve. Three remain in critical condition, but seven have been discharged.
Dr. David Mooney provided positive news to People, assuring, “These kids will live; they have things that can be fixed.” Mooney, a father of four, said parents should reassure their children “that while bad things do happen, 99 percent of the world is good.”
Tufts Medical Center received 19 patients from the marathon, with 14 sustaining injuries that were blast-related, according to CBS News. Ten were admitted, and 10 remained in the hospital as of Tuesday afternoon. As the disaster was happening, the hospital staff was going through a shift change, allowing Tufts Medical to keep people on, as well as gain additional support from those arriving.
Chief of Surgery, Dr. William Mackey, told CBS he heard about the bombing from his office assistant, “who shouted when she heard the sound of the bomb going off while listening to live radio coverage.” Four patients needed immediate surgery, but none lost their limbs.
Dr. Richard Wolfe, Chief of Emergency Medicine at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center
Twenty-four patients were admitted to Beth Israel. As of Tuesday, four remained in critical condition, while 17 were in serious condition. Chief of Emergency Medicine Dr. Richard Wolfe assured CBS, however, “There are good hopes that everyone will pull through.”
The team completed at least two amputations and saw several other serious wounds, which Wolfe claimed have received aggressive care. As he told CBS, “People with those wound injuries should be quite good at this point. It may take time for the healing to occur, but we’re very hopeful that people will do well.”
Dr. Ron Walls, Chairman of the Department of Emergency Medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital
Walls’ team is looking after 26 patients, ranging in age from 16 to 62. Two are in critical condition, while eight to 10 have serious injuries, according to the Huffington Post. One amputation was completed, with a possible two more.
“The things that struck me the most were the incredible calm of the victims, even though they were obviously experiencing something no human being should ever have to experience,” said Walls to the Boston Globe. “[They were] incredibly calm and able to help us take care of them.”
Dr. George Velmahos and the rest of the Mass General team has seen 34 patients, four of which had to undergo amputations, with two more limbs still at risk of needing removal. Velmahos said during Tuesday’s press conference, he is “confident that no further lives will be lost,” though.
He followed by saying: “The experience has been overwhelming; …we’re suffering emotionally for what happened to the people of Boston and many others. At the same time, we can’t help but feel proud, because the medical community at Massachusetts General responded in an amazing way.”
Dr. Peter Fagenholz, Trauma Surgeon at Mass General Hospital
Dr. Peter Fagenholz kept his composure on camera Monday after more than 12 hours of operation, telling ABC News several amputations had already been performed and that he had seen at least one ruptured eardrum.
Although the gravity of the injuries were “depressing,” Fagenholz acknowledged they were focused on caring for the victims. “This is work,” he said. “When this happens, we just go to work.”
Dr. Tracy Dechert, Trauma Surgeon at Boston Medical Center and Boston University School of Medicine Professor
Dr. Tracy Dechert was immediately on the scene Monday, telling the New York Times: “What we like to do is before we take off someone’s leg — it’s extremely hard to make that decision — is we often get two surgeons to agree. Am I right here? This can’t be saved. So that way you feel better and know that you didn’t take off someone’s leg that you didn’t have to take. All rooms had multiple surgeons so everyone could feel like we’re doing what we need to be doing.”
Dr. Andrew Ulrich, Head of Emergency Medicine at Boston Medical Center and Boston University School of Medicine Professor
Dr. Andrew Ulrich received word about the marathon blast just moments after starting his shift on Monday, according to the Boston Globe.
“I’ve never been prouder to work here,” Ulrich said to the Boston Herald. “Some people were running [in] the marathon, and they just left the course and came in to work. Others were watching the race, or enjoying the day off, and they all came in to do what they could.”
Dr. Adrienne Wald told Fox 25 her group of 30 nursing students ran to the finish line to assist individuals after the bombs went off.
“They did what they were trained to do,” Wald said. “Instead of running away, they ran to help.”
Chase Garbarino contributed to this article.