Everyone in this community knows that our wiki is not exactly completely up to date. Even if it was, wikis in general usually don’t explain the implication of the data that they provide. That is goal of this guide.
TLDR; Don’t underestimate bruise patches and ointments; The sleeper inject instantly; 2u perfluorodecalin pills and 15u carthatoline pills.
- Tools and drugs of your trade
- Your home the medbay
- Of bruise packs and ointments
- Dealing with toxic, poison and overdoses
- Overview of healing chemicals, their sources, and their use cases
- Surgery and some examples
- Dealing with viruses
- Common pit falls
You should start your shift by going to the medical storage. To equip yourself with the proper tools needed to combat disease and death that is to follow.
As a medical doctor you begin with a useful item. That item is the high-capacity medical kit. In this case you will find basic operating tools need for the tend wounds surgery and basic healing supplies including bruise packs and ointments.
Bruise packs and ointments shall henceforth be called generic supplies to prevent repetition and can also include your EpiPens.
This is how I like to organize my inventory:
From one of the medical lockers, you should grab a medical HUD and a medical belt. You can fast equip using E. Finally for the swag make sure to grab a medical beret and a stethoscope.
Some people like to keep their surgical tools in their belt. This doesn’t really make sense to me as most of the time you will be doing healing and not surgery.
It doesn’t really matter if you keep things consistent though. I put my generic supplies into the toolbelt. The medical scanner in my pocket. In your high-capacity medical kit place your surgical tools.
I always put a crowbar into my internals box as well. In case power goes out and you need to open a door.
Time to grab some stuff that you don’t start with. You should go to the medical crafting bench and craft a circular saw and a retractor. With these you now have the tools to perform most operations. Additionally, you may want to grab, when silver becomes available, a blood filter. The blood filter is usually not needed though.
Use a chemistry bag for storage of your drugs. It can store all of your medicine, has a massive capacity and it’s very easy to use since drugs stack in the bag and it’s a tiny item. Insane. This is my real secret to super fast healing times.
You will have to craft one since chemists are not going to share this. Can be crafted from two bed sheets with wire cutters by clicking on the sheets. You can find sheets in the medbay or the dorms.
Pick up a bottle of charcoal and from the toxic kit and a calomel syringe. Also grab some brute patches, burn patches and some salbutamol from their respective kit.
As more technology is researched and as you use your drugs you will want to replace or upgrade as necessary. Lots of options here I will not cover here. That covers the tools. Now we shall move on to the facilities.
Most of your time will be spent in the primary medbay room. Other rooms that you should be aware of are the cryotube room and the cloning “room”. Rooms that you should be aware of, because sometimes there’s no one manning them, are chemistry and virology.
The purpose of this section is to explain to you the standard upgrades that should be performed every round on the medbay to make it significantly more effective for very little effort.
Three upgrades that I feel should be performed every shift are upgrading your sleeper and mounting your defibrillators.
Mounting your defibrillators is as simple as waiting for a tech to be researched, then building them from the crafting bench, sticking it on a wall and then sticking the defibrillator on it. This makes your life so much easier and should always be done. The CMO starts with one for free in their locker.
The second upgrade that you should cry about to your CMO or your RnD department is upgrading your sleeper. Upgrading your sleeper will give you access to superior medicine, primarily pentetic acid and let you inject patients in worse conditions then just soft crit up to 75% crit.
The last upgrade is creating a operation computer next to your stasis beds. This will allow you to use much better tend wound surgery if it is researched. One computer can supply every adjacent stasis bed. It is therefore a good idea to build stasis beds so that a computer can touch multiple of them. Another trick here is that you can operate simultaneously on multiple patients if they are next to you. This can be quite big.
Finally more stasis beds are always nice if someone is feeling industrious. Requires research sadly.
Let me also additionally explains how some machines in medbay work that confused me when I started.
The sleeper is a vital machine for medbay. It makes your life significantly easier. The important thing to note about sleepers is that they inject chemicals instantly.
This might confuse people because if you put a patient inside the sleeper and inject the chemical, you will see it slowly ticking down implying that the chemicals are slowly being injected. But in reality, the sleeper is showing the chemicals already present in the patient’s bloodstream.
Your medical scanner, on a side note, also can show you the reagents inside of your patient’s bloodstream. If you hold your medical scanner in hand and press Z, it will switch into reagent scanning mode.
The second important medbay machine is the stasis beds. The stasis beds are a two-headed sword. Why they are two-headed sword will be explained in the toxic damage part of this guide. For now, what you should know is that placing a patient on a stasis bed will halt all decay and all reagent metabolization in the patient.
There are no upgrades for the stasis beds. However, when shit hits the fan, it is very nice to have a lot of stasis beds to prevent body decay. However, there is a ghetto alternative in the form of Formaldehyde. If you have no Formaldehyde EpiPens inject a bit into dead bodies.
Formaldehyde will not freeze the defibrillation times but will freeze the much shorter organ decay time of the heart which is only four minutes compared to the fifteen minutes of defibrillation time post death.
The next machine you should know about is the operating computer. With proper research, the operating computer will allow you to perform significantly better tend wound operations. If combined with an operating table, you can perform operations that are mostly used for trolling and not really used for healing. Therefore, you will usually see people place their operating computer next to the stasis beds instead of operating tables.
The next is the cryotube. The cryotube should be mostly used to cure cellular AKA clone damage. New players will often always try to use the cryotube because it’s easy and it heals all damage type. However, usage of cryotube is limited and should be reserved for the one damage type that cannot be healed by other means or for special circumstances.
The final combo of machines to know about is the cloning bay. Open the scanning pod, put in the head or the body. Scan that body. Clone the body. Simple as. Cloning should be reserved when you only have a head or brain, or when the body is extremely damaged. Instead of going through a lengthy surgery and spending the synthflesh to dehusk the body, it is significantly easier to just rip out the brain and then clone the body.
The number one thing that I would like to explain to you is the often-overlooked effectiveness of bruise packs and ointments.
There are our most simple yet effective tool.
Simply target the body part that is damaged and then apply a bruise patch or an ointment depending on damage type. They are instantaneous and heal 40 damage of their type. One “pack” has 6 uses.
They can’t be used on dead people though. If someone is alive and they have significant amount of damage on certain body parts, then you should always be grabbing for these generic healing supplies.
Example use case for generic supplies
For example, if a person comes into the medbay with, let’s say, 60 brute damage on their chest, all it takes is two bruise patches for them to be instantly fully healed. People coming in with a lot of damage on a single body part is a very common thing in medbay.
That’s because when people fight, they usually don’t switch body parts that they attack, so it’s very often that a person will come in with like 200 damage on the head or 200 damage on the chest, and then all you must do is revive them, slap a few bruise patches on them and you have just instantly fully healed them.
The effectiveness of these basic healing supplies is what makes things like bandages for bleeding significantly less effective. Why bandage when you can just heal them and that will automatically stop the bleeding?
And dead bodies don’t bleed normally. If you drag them, they do though. That is, by the way, why bandages are in the kit and not on the belt or not even in my inventory sometimes.
The downside of these basic healing supplies is that if a person is equally damaged in all body parts, they are slow to use and inefficient, and in that case, medicine should be used.
As mentioned above, they also cannot be used on dead people as most medicine. They also cannot be used through hard suits, armors, etc. Sometimes security officers will come in that have armor on their chest while the chest is also damaged. In this case you should ask them to take off their armor for a moment to heal them.
Now that you understand the effectiveness of bruise packs and ointments, I will now explain to you the worst basic damage type.
Toxic is the worst damage types because you lack the bruise packs and ointments of brute and burn.
No more instant healing for you. There are no generic supplies for toxic damage. That means to heal toxic damage, you need to use medicine. And your starting medicine to deal with toxic damage are not very good.
Your options being charcoal and anti-tox. This also means that the patient cannot be on a stasis bed while you’re healing toxic damage, because they need to be able to metabolize the medicine.
This goes back to that two headed sword analogy regarding the stasis beds. If a person is in crit and you put them on a stasis bed, they stop metabolizing the epinephrine. If they stop metabolizing the epinephrine, they start taking oxygen damage. And therefore, they will eventually die on the stasis bed.
Here is an example of case:
Example of possible cure to toxin damage in a certain case
Someone is wheeled into medbay having a lot of toxic damage and being in crit. The first thing that you should do is put the person in a sleeper or use your medical scanner in reagent mode to check what is inside their blood. Though you should always start your treatment with a full scan. In this case, the patient has been poisoned with a large quantity of cyanide. How would you procced in this case? How you proceed here depends entirely on what tools are available to you.
To cure this patient using no drugs except charcoal and epinephrine you can place them on a stasis bed and filter their blood with an operation. This is slow process, and they will probably die from oxygen loss, but that is fine because you can easily revive them.
Then once you have filtered his blood, simply revive him again, give him some charcoal, epinephrine and possibly some dexalin or salbutamol, unbuckle then from the stasis bed, and leave them somewhere in the corner to slowly recover overtime. Again, this is a very slow process and higher tier medicine would make this significantly faster.
The right thing to do here is to use a drug that is literally made for this situation, and you have available since round start.
Calomel is available in toxic damage kits and will purge all reagent from the patient’s bloodstream. The downside is that it will deal ~25 damage per 2u if health is over 20, but in this case it isn’t.
The person should simply be injected with calomel and injected with epinephrine. You might be saying, why would you eject them with epinephrine if you’re just going to purge it? Because even if the drug is being purged, it still has effect while it’s in the blood.
This will quickly purge the cyanide from the patients’ blood as well as prevent him from dying from oxygen loss if you maintain the amount of epinephrine in his blood. Depending on the toxin damage some anti-tox or oxygen medicine might be needed to tide the patient over until the cyanide is purged.
After that it is simply a matter of giving them charcoal or any other toxic healing medicine to get rid of the toxic damage and send them on their way.
The same principles apply to overdoses. For example, if you were stupid and managed to overdose your patient on tricordazine, then you should follow the exact same process except you should probably use pentetic acid instead of calomel if you can. In general pentetic acid is much better then calomel.
The important thing to remember here is that you shouldn’t be afraid to let your patient die. This isn’t real life. A patient can be revived as many times as it’s needed. Death is completely irrelevant. And so is revival.
The real problem in medicine is dealing with poisons, dealing with damage, and dealing with missing organs. Not the revival process itself.
It’s also more fun for them as they can ghost and look around the station (and be banned for metagaming) and not just be stuck in their body, not being able to see or hear anything.
It also allows you to talk to their ghost. Obviously not directly, but it certainly helps if you’re reviving a person to talk to the sky like a lunatic. Telling them that they shouldn’t worry. And that you are just going to have to replace their liver, but then I’m going to revive you, so don’t leave please or all my work will be for nothing YOU STUPID FUCK.
Let’s begin with that is a large part of a good doctor’s knowledge. This is where the wiki makes things confusing. It lists all these drugs but doesn’t explain the context needed to truly understand.
Every damage type has its own line of medicine. There are also special drugs that you will commonly use. There are drugs that you will not use commonly but are still useful. And finally, drugs that you will never use or use if you’re doing a bit of trolling.
It’s important that in SS13 there is nothing that is truly useless. There will be situations where any of these can be useful. Bear that in mind when I say “useless”.
Brute line: Bicardine → Styptic Powder → Salicyclic Acid
Burn line: Kelotane → Silver Sulfadiazine → Oxandrolone
Brute & Burn
The first tier is available in sleepers and pills from respective kits. It should be used to heal minor damage below 50. The second tier is what is in the patches. It should be used to heal medium damage split between different body parts.
If it’s medium damage in a single body part, generic supplies should be used instead. The third tier is something that you will never use. The second tier is adequate to heal medium damage.
If the person is suffering from high damage, they’re probably dead, and you can’t use drugs on them. You shouldn’t ask your chemist to make the third tier. Their attention is limited, and you have better things to ask for. If you’re playing chemist and you want doctors to use these drugs, then make sure to announce that you have made them.
Oxygen damage line: Dexalin → Dexalin Plus / Salbutamol → Perfluorodecalin
Dexalin is available in injectors in the oxygen damage kits. The first tier isn’t very useful. If the person is suffering from less than 50 suffocation damage, then they can just recover that by breathing. It can still have uses, of course. Some healing in still better than no healing.
However, it is quite easily upgraded into dexalin plus. Dexalin plus and salbutamol are identical. Salbutamol is also available in the oxygen damage kit. This leaves us with Tier 3 and an exceptionally potent medicine. 2u perfluorodecalin will heal ~200 oxygen damage rapidly but deals 20 toxic damage. You should ask your chemist every round for a few 2u pills because they are very valuable to have and very easy to make.
Toxic damage line: Charcoal || Anti-tox → Carthatoline
Charcoal and anti-tox have different use cases. Anti-tox should be used with damage under 50. Charcoal, on the other hand, is always effective. Its downside or upside depending on context, is that it also purges other chemicals slowly. That’s why it’s always a good idea to have a bottle of charcoal on hand until you get upgraded medicines.
Carthatoline is your premier anti-tox medicine. Easily accessible because it is directly upgraded from anti-tox. Always ask your chemist to make this medicine because they are invaluable when dealing with toxic damage.
Hepanephrodaxon is used to heal liver damage. Not toxin damage. This makes it useful basically never.
Reagent purge line: Calmomel → Pentetic Acid
The value of calmomel has already been discussed in the toxin section. Calmomel is also very good when treating oozelings. Calmomel does 25 damage per 2u if the patient has less then 20 hp. Calmomel is available round start from toxic kits.
Pentetic acid is not the easiest thing to make. It is one of the primary reasons that you upgrade your sleepers. It cures all radiation damage, purges chemicals and on top of that has some light toxin damage healing. This is a fantastic medicine. It’s used very often. However, you probably don’t need to ask your chemist to make this for you, since it is available from the sleeper.
All damage heal line: Tricordrazine → Omnizine → Atropine
This medicine is difficult to use. It will very rarely have a proper usage. That is because it is rare for a person to come into the medbay, suffering from multiple damage types in equal amounts. Moreover, suffering from different damage types on different body parts. It doesn’t help that these drugs are not the easiest to craft or get. Omnizine must be made from botany or grinded from donk pockets.
There are more drugs that have common uses and some like oculine were not mentioned but I’m sure you can figure the rest out for yourself. In conclusion I think you should always ask for 2u perfluorodecalin pills, 15u - 20u carthatoline pills, spaceacillin (explained later) and maybe pentetic acid.
Surgery, specifically tend wound and filter blood, should usually only be used when a person is dead. When a patient is not dead, we can use generic supplies and medicines to heal them quickly. You can’t use that on dead people, so you must use surgery. Knowing that here are a few cases and how I would deal with them. A thing to remember that revival heals a little of each damage type.
These answers are not extensive. There is a lot more possibilities than this, but here are just some examples and how I would treat each.
Also note that the optimal solution depends on what you are optimizing for. If you are optimizing for speed it’s different then if you are optimizing for saving medicine.
Lots of examples and suggestions for treatment
- Patient with 60 brute on his chest: If he has armor ask them to take it off for a second. Then apply 2 bruise patches.
- Patient with 90 brute total 40 on head rest on different body parts: Apply bruise patch to head. Then apply 20u bicaridine for the sleeper or the brute kit pills OR use a brute patch.
- Patient in crit with split burn and brute damage on different body parts: Apply generic medicine on part that are over 40 OR on parts until the patient is no longer in crit. Can also use a patch. Then apply medicine from sleeper to heal rest.
- Patient that is dead with high toxin and oxygen damage: Check the reagents in the blood. Filter blood or calmomel/pentetic acid with revival. Heal toxin damage (charcoal, anti-tox or better) and oxy damage (dexalin, salbutamol, perfluorodecalin).
- Patient with minor burn and brute damage: inject bicaridine and kelotane with sleeper.
- Patient with minor toxin damage: Charcoal or anti-tox.
- Patient that is dead with high brute damage: operate until brute is under 180. EpiPen, brute patch (if split between body parts) and brise pack at the ready. Revive then, unbuckle from stasis bed, and heal the most damaged parts with the generic supplies. Deal with oxy damage as needed.
- Only the patient’s head: Throw into cloner scanner and clone.
- Patient that is husked, toxed up and damaged with very high brute and burn damage: Rip out brain and clone. Fix with mannitol if needed.
- Dead patient with only oxygen damage (200): revive and give oxygen medicine and epi.
They can do things like make people talk like clowns. Or they can be the reason the station is falling apart because everybody is dying. Initially it is difficult to tell which is which, so all viruses should be treated as super space tuberculosis. If you see a person who is sick, what you should do is start scream at them to stop moving.
In case there are a lot of infected people you should rush to get a bio suit. Unfortunately, on most maps there is very few bio-suits available and most of them will be locked in virology. That’s why I always like to pester the CMO or cargo if I am CMO to at least order one or two creates of viral protection suits.
If you can’t put get proper protection put on your internals and pray. Walk up to the patient and scan the virus to see how it spread then run back and scream at them not to move again just in case they didn’t understand. If it’s spread by blood for example, it’s not that threating, but if it’s airborne then it is very threatening.
Counterintuitively, in Space Station 13, the primary force against viruses is the chemist. If you have no chemist or the chemist is unrobust, then the virus is significantly more dangerous. The virologist job is not important here. Anyone can be the virologist in this case. All you must do is put some blood that has antibodies into the machine, and it will spit out a vaccine. It’s that simple. One might even say, simple as.
However, making the cure can involve complex drugs or combinations of complex drugs that need to be made in a stressful environment. However, you only need to cure one patient to be able to create a vaccine.
Once you do have a vaccine, make sure to scream on common. Make sure to scream it multiple times because people are stupid and they keep coming into medbay asking why they’re sick and where the cure is, even though we already have a vaccine in the fridge.
Finally, the dirty secret to dealing with viruses is spaceacillin. You can get a single bottle from the dispenser. When you see someone who is infected inject a syringe with 5u and just shoot them with the syringe gun. Now, for a very long time, they can not spread the virus.
This initial flattening of the curve might make the difference between easy mode and ultra nightmare mode.
Here are some mistakes that are easy to make that will leave you standing over a corpse in shame and sadness:
- Not checking if a person has a soul when they are wheeled into medbay and intermittently during every step of the revival process.
- Not noticing that a person has low or critical blood and being confused why they keep taking oxygen damage.
- Not noticing that the patient is a plasma man or oozeling, and not treating them properly or killing them by accident.
- Not noticing that your patient is missing lungs, liver, or other necessary organs that you can revive without, but the patient dies soon after.
- Injecting the patient with 10u of bicaridine, 10u kelotane and 10u of anti-tox (easy to do with an upgraded sleeper) thus overdosing them on tricordrazine.
- Forgetting to check your intent during surgery and botching it.
- Forgetting to check if patients’ clothes are in the way.
And many more I can’t remember right now. Collect them all and become a real boy!