The art of medicine goes beyond the cookie-cutter science. It involves compassion, spirit, faith and, above all, the art of healing. But in the frenzied moments of triage and stabilization that followed the shootings that killed five police officers and wounded nine others, including seven cops, in Dallas last week, it was the rehearsed science of emergency medicine that took hold to save lives. Emotions were suppressed in favor of efficiency and skill.

The emergency room at Baylor University Medical Center, located in the heart  of Dallas, is one of our nation’s top Level 1 trauma centers. It joins with Parkland Hospital to provide immediate lifesaving care. Baylor was mobilized last Thursday following the shootings. Dr. Stephen Burgher, emergency room physician at Baylor and captain in the U.S. Navy Reserve, described to me what it felt like that night as he helped coordinate and oversee the medical response.

“I was on duty and it was surreal,” Burgher said. “I felt as if I were back in Afghanistan. We had to mobilize quickly and clear the room for critical care services. Just as in Afghanistan, we didn’t know when the next wave of casualties could come. We moved existing patients to the back of the ER to make room for more. Our focus was to stabilize, identify critical injuries, decide where they should go and then prepare for the next wave.”

Burgher was stationed in Afghanistan from 2013 to 2014, working as head of a trauma emergency department. He recently returned from Iraq, where he was lead physician for the Special Purpose Marine Air Ground Task Force, which provided medical support in the fight against ISIS. His special training and experience prepared him well for last Thursday night.

I have witnessed shooter and victim lying side-by-side in a trauma emergency room where doctors, nurses and techs worked through the night to save both. The science of medicine does not allow us to differentiate based on good versus evil.

“Some were very unstable. There were gunshot wounds to the arms and legs, but also bullets to the chest and abdomen that were life-threatening. The first step was to stabilize them. Damage-control surgery was sometimes necessary to control the bleeding. From there to the ICU, where we continue to resuscitate them before more definitive surgery. We give them blood products. Immediate operations are sometimes needed for fractures to the pelvis and thigh, whereas less severe fractures can be splinted and treated the next day.”

Baylor treated a variety of injuries that night, from gunshot wounds to minor injuries incurred in the protest rally. Baylor utilizes a team approach and practices, drills and rehearses its mass casualty response periodically.

“I’m really proud of our team,” Burgher said. “It is a team of teams. We have nurses, technicians, radiologists, respiratory therapists, ER physicians, all coordinating seamlessly with our trauma surgeons, orthopedists, blood bank, etc.”

Burgher said the entire team was honored to care for their brethren.

“We are part of a brotherhood,” he said, “EMS, law enforcement, firefighters, emergency department personnel. There is a kinship. All in the same fight to care for our country, to protect our community. Same as in the military. The military is part of that brotherhood as well.”

Some didn’t make it. Burgher said the toughest part of all was knowing you did all you could do and it wasn’t enough, “and we lose one of our brothers.”

I have witnessed shooter and victim lying side-by-side in a trauma emergency room where doctors, nurses and techs worked through the night to save both. The science of medicine does not allow us to differentiate based on good versus evil.

Which is not to say that we don’t rejoice when a hero’s life is saved or mourn deeply when one is lost.

When the medical crisis was finally over, Burgher was able to step back and reflect, and to see law enforcement officers comforting and hugging each other in the hallways. It was only then that he allowed the deep emotions to hit him.

“It breaks your heart,” he said. “It is an honor and a great sorrow to care for them.”

Dr. Marc Siegel, a practicing internist, joined FOX News Channel (FNC) as a contributor in 2008..