ER
Middleman

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Middleman

Dubenko walks in to give Lysander an update on when he'll get an ICU bed, and stops short when he sees what Pratt is doing. Sam gets real busy with the IV. Dubenko wonders, "Why stop there? Get sterile, Pratt. We're going in." Pratt doesn't think Dubenko is serious. Dubenko says if they're so sure he needs an ex-lap, they'll do it right there. That doesn't seem sterile. Lysander looks alarmed. Pratt pulls a face, and then there's a weird fade to commercial.

And then there's a weird break back from commercial, where we enter in the middle of Dubenko explaining that he was just trying to make a point. He asks where Luka is, and Pratt says that Sam's out looking for him, even though moments earlier, Sam was standing right there. There must have been something cut out of this scene. Dubenko tells Pratt, "Quick, friendly tip of advice: next time you're caught between a surgeon and anyone else in the hospital, listen to the surgeon." Lysander asks what they're going to do now, and Dubenko says Pratt will have to finish what he started. Pratt explains the procedure to Lysander again, even though Luka did just that not ten minutes ago. Weird. Dubenko says that ER docs convince themselves of the worst possible diagnosis and then "radiate, bleed, and bludgeon" to prove that they're right. Pratt sticks up for Luka, and says that he's always on them to do fewer tests. Dubenko says they are "so obsessed with the dramatic save that [they] fail to develop any finesse." He's not done. He adds, "Sledgehammers and carpet bombing when discretion and restraint are what is required." And people really like this character? Pratt says they wouldn't have pushed for the procedure if they didn't think they'd find something. Dubenko says that Luka did an invasive procedure on somebody else's patient. Didn't Dubenko get the memo that said that ER docs can do whatever the hell they want, and damn the rules?

Luka walks in and tells Dubenko to talk to him instead of his resident. Dubenko suggests that they discuss it in the hallway. Luka doesn't want to. Dubenko stomps over and says that his patient is fully aware that Luka and Pratt ignored Dubenko's instructions to do "this ridiculous test." Lysander assures him that it's okay. Luka says that after years of taking care of cases that surgery blows off, he's developed some intuition. Dubenko shoots back, "Your intuitive approach is very sweet, but I like to practice evidence-based medicine." Dubenko suggests that they look at the evidence. He pulls up the bag into which the saline was draining, which is pink. Lysander asks if that means he's bleeding. Dubenko says no, and slaps the bag on top of a chart. He can read every word through the fluid. Darlene asks how that correlates to cell count, and Dubenko says it's ten thousand red blood cells, tops, and that Pratt probably released that many with his incision. Pratt says that Dubenko doesn't know that for sure. Lysander asks if they should bring another doctor in to act as a tie-breaker. Dubenko says, "If he was bleeding, we'd be looking at tomato juice, not pink lemonade." Luka says, "He could have a small tear that's intermittently oozing." Dubenko sighs that he's tired of this game, and that since Luka won't stay away from his patient, he's going to find him a bed. Dubenko leaves, and Lysander asks if he's mad at him.

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