Revelers’ injuries pack ERs 

In addition to the usual winter maladies and health issues, emergency rooms in San Francisco and San Mateo County were busy on New Year’s Eve with an influx of party-related injuries and concerns.

But according to many ER doctors, the last weekend of the holiday season was relatively stable, with no significant injuries or alcohol-related problems.

"We were very busy," San Francisco General Hospital Nursing Supervisor Sam Jones said. "Nothing horribly serious, just a lot of the usual drinking issues. Some people needed to get CT scans, to rule out more serious problems, but we generally spent the night babysitting most of the people who came in until they were able to leave ontheir own."

Jones said the hospital "prepared for the worst," by increasing their usual 12 to 14 nurses in the emergency room to as many as 18 during the night.

At California Pacific Hospital, Dr. Robert Boyer said they had approximately 20 percent to 30 percent more traffic than a normal night during New Year’s Eve, and treated a number of alcohol-related conditions, including one ankle cut by shards from a dropped wine glass.

Dr. Jason Eiband from Kaiser Permanente’s South San Francisco center said the night was busy as well, and the additional alcohol cases simply added to an already busy winter season.

"The seasonal stuff has really been rolling in for us, a lot of people with fevers, sick to their stomachs, diarrhea." Eiband said. "But the holidays tend to bring more of the alcohol and accidents related to alcohol and some drug issues too."

Throughout the course of the day, Eiband said the ER went from one doctor in the morning to five on duty at midnight.

He added that although holidays can vary, and run "hot or cold," New Year’s Eve is definitely "hot" for alcohol-related issues.

jgoldman@examiner.com

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A daily newspaper covering San Francisco, San Mateo County and serving Alameda, Marin and Santa Clara counties.
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