Appendices: Case study for Pneumonia

At Home

Annabelle Liao

Day: 0

Time: 15h00

Place:  At home

Miki sighs and slowly sinks back into her wheelchair. Even though she had skipped the last family karaoke session, her lungs still ached a bit, and that persistent cough, albeit minor at the moment, bothers her more than she would like to admit. Although she is someone who prides herself on being able to walk everywhere, she had stayed in her wheelchair for the majority of that day, which incites the slightest tinge of distress. “Don’t worry,” Miki whispers hoarsely to herself, “it’s wintertime, the cold’s just getting to your joints.”


She glances over at the black television screen, before turning to look at the time. She thinks that maybe some hot tea will help her tight chest. “Linda,” she calls weakly to her daughter working at the computer upstairs.


A minute passes, but there is no response. Miki tries to clear her throat, but that in itself seemed to bring about exhaustion. Perhaps she had better call her daughter with her phone.


She slowly scrolls through her call history until she sees her daughter’s name. “Mom?” her daughter’s voice immediately sounds after the second ring, full of concern, “Why are you calling me? I’m just upstairs, remember?”


Suddenly it occurs to Miki that she feels too weak to even speak at her regular volume, and all she can do is stare blankly at the blinking numbers on her screen indicating the time elapsed in the call. She vaguely realizes that Linda’s anxious voice is coming through the speaker but can’t seem to formulate a response. In the silence, she hears tiny popping sounds somewhere in her chest when inhaling and exhaling.


“Mom?” This time, the voice comes from in front of her, and she looks up to see her daughter looking distraught. Although Miki eventually catches her breath after a minute and persistently waves off any concern to put Linda at ease, she soon finds herself in the car driven by her unsettled daughter and on the way to the hospital.


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Pathology Copyright © 2022 by Annabelle Liao is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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