A Day in the Life

A Day in the Life: Karishma Bhatia, MD

4:30 a.m: Wake up and turn on my coffee-machine. 

5 a.m: Time for a run. Today I ran to forest park, it was a beautiful morning to see the sunrise! I like to spend an hour in the morning working out, or meal prepping, or walking my dog — it helps me feel more prepared for the rest of my day. 

6 a.m: eat breakfast. My recent favorite quick breakfast is frozen blueberries (zapped in the microwave for 1 min), topped with some cottage cheese. It tastes like blueberry cheesecake! 

6:15 a.m: I kiss my dog good-bye and leave for the hospital. 

6:30 a.m: I start setting up my cardiac OR. My case today starts at 8 a.m. I check the vent, draw up drugs, set up the endotracheal tube (we’re doing a double lumen ETT today!). I spike some meds for my infusion line (just some norepinephrine to start with some epi available if needed). I make sure we have a PA catheter available as we will be floating a swan for this case. 

6:45 a.m: Grand rounds start—I Zoom in to the call on my phone and listen. Today we have the Morbidity & Mortality conference. I love M&M conferences because many times the things I learn change my day-to-day practice. 

7:15 a.m: I meet my patient in pre-op and prepare to place an arterial line. 

7:50 a.m: time to roll back and start the case! Today we’re doing a mitral valve repair with a thoracotomy. I intubate, double check the placement of the tube with the bronchoscope, and tape everything in place. Then I get started on the central line. 

8:40 a.m: We’re done placing lines, and it’s time for surgery to start the case!

9:45 a.m: We’re on cardiac bypass! Off to a good start. 

12:30 p.m: My co-resident relieves me for lunch and education. For lunch today I brought spicy cauliflower fried rice with yogurt sauce — yum! 

1 p.m: Education afternoon begins! Today we have lectures on empathy and C compassion by Dr. Ridley, abdominal transplant with Dr. King, and OB emergency simulations with Dr. Liu. 

5 p.m: Time to go home! I look up patients for the next day and call my attending to discuss my anesthetic plan for each case. 

5:45 p.m: Dinner time! Tonight I’m making spicy tofu tacos with fresh tzatziki sauce. I find cooking for myself to be an avenue for stress relief and self-care.

7:00 p.m: I take my dog on a long walk in our neighborhood. The vet recently told my dog he has to lose a little bit of his winter chub, so we’ve been trying to prioritize evening walks. I also like to use these long walks to catch up with friends and family on the phone. 

8 p.m: Time to shower and get ready for bed! Sometimes I will read a book or listen to a podcast while cuddling with my dog in bed.