Call this the chance encounter of a lifetime for a passenger on a flight who needed medical attention. Two Louisiana State University (LSU) second-year medical students jumped to the rescue and saved the passenger’s life.
Heather Duplessis and Lauren Bagneris have been friends since they met at LSU during their undergraduate studies. The pair had always wondered what they would do if they came across someone who needed medical attention. Although they never wished for it to happen, the LSU Health Sciences Center medical students were put to the test in real-time, and they passed with flying colors.
“We were definitely mentally preparing, and I don’t know if that was just God putting us in the right mindset for that situation,” Bagneris said. “We’ve never discussed anything like that before.”
Duplessis and Bagneris wanted to unwind for the last time before thrusting full-time into school with a 10-day vacation to Greece. While on board the flight, they noticed a woman had fallen from her seat, with the flight attendant seeking medical assistance from anyone who was qualified to help, The Washington Post reported.
Knowing they were still students, the doctors in the making did not volunteer initially, holding it out for a ‘proper’ medical officer to take charge. Realizing that no one on the flight could assist, the two medical students volunteered to help, declaring they were students from the onset.
“We waited a second to make sure no actual medical professionals were around to respond,” said Duplessis, 25. “When no one responded, that’s when we identified ourselves as med students. They said, ‘Definitely, we could use your help.’”
In collaboration with a doctor on the ground, the two friends helped the woman who felt lightheaded due to low blood sugar and heat exhaustion and stabilized her after they checked her blood pressure and blood glucose level.
“They calmed the patient and got her to take some juice and food, and also cooled her off,” university officials wrote in a Facebook post on Saturday. “The patient ended up feeling much better thanks to these two talented doctors in the making and their LSU medical education. Way to Geaux Tigers! You do us proud,” school officials hailed their students’ readiness to help the woman.
Ever since the post was shared on the LSU Health Sciences Facebook page, the young medical doctors in the making have received many accolades and praises for their lifesaving intervention.