Doctor Nose Best

, , , , | Healthy | November 21, 2017

(I am a pediatrician. A woman has come in with her little girl who is suffering from a rather infected finger. He diagnoses her with a staph infection, prescribes some antibiotics, and sends them home. At the end of the antibiotics the woman is back in his office, and the infection has spread to several areas; a spot on the little girl’s face, the inside of her nose, and a spot on her leg. She demands that I run a million tests because I’m clearly a “failure of a doctor.”)

Me: “Ma’am, it appears that your daughter has spread the infection to other areas of her body, most likely through scratches or by touching a scratch that was already there.”

Mother: “That’s impossible! How would she get one in her nose? You’re just making excuses because you don’t want to run any tests!”

Me: “I can assure you, ma’am, that’s not the case. If I felt the need to, I would certainly run more tests, but there is no need for all that time, effort, and money when I can clearly see what the cause is. It’s more than 99% certain that she spread it through her nose by a scratch as the bacteria causing the infection is located under her fingernails. She picked her nose, scratched it, and spread the infection there.”

Mother: *turns bright red* “That’s ridiculous! My little princess would never do anything so disgusting as pick her nose! We’re just going to go and get a second opinion! You’ll be run out of business, you’ll see!”

(We turn around to see her “little princess” with a finger very far up her nose indeed. The mother grows nearly purple at this point and swats her daughter’s hand away from her face.)

Me: “So I’ll be prescribing that next round of antibiotics, then?”

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