Now You’re Just Being Cilly

, , , , , | Healthy | February 25, 2018

(I have gone to see my new doctor because I have pneumonia.)

Doctor: *after looking at my xrays* “Yeah, that’s pneumonia. I’m going to prescribe you amoxicillin.”

Me: “I’m allergic to the penicillin family. Isn’t that in my chart?”

Doctor: “Yeah, it is… How allergic exactly are you?”

Me: “Allergic enough that I don’t want to risk it?”

Doctor: “I’m just trying to save you money! The other one I can give you is really expensive.”

Me: “More expensive than a hospital stay because of an allergic reaction?”

Doctor: “I’m just trying to save you money. No need to get defensive!”

Me: “I just want to go home and back to bed; just give me my prescription and let me worry about the costs!”

(She grudgingly gave me my prescription, muttering the entire time about how she was just trying to save me money and how ungrateful I was. The non-penicillin medication cost me $15.)

That Pretty Much Covers It

, , , , | Healthy | February 24, 2018

(My mother is in her sixties, and while not incredibly vain, she can’t help but be a little interested in various plastic surgical procedures. Since she has gotten to know a plastic surgeon through the ballroom dance club she helps run with my dad, she goes to his office one day for a consultation. I happen to call her the afternoon after her appointment. Also note that my three siblings and I were all born via medically necessary C-sections, and my mom is ten years in remission for a mild form of lymphoma.)

Me: “So, how did it go?”

Mother: “It was fine. But I have to tell you, I don’t think this is for me.”

Me: “Oh? What makes you say that?”

Mother: “Probably the fact that I’m not in the mood to have a more extensive medical procedure just to look pretty than I did to beat cancer or have four children!”

(I have no problem with anyone who chooses to have plastic surgery — it’s your body, after all — but I couldn’t fault my mom’s rationale, and it did make me laugh. Just one of the many reasons I love this lady so much!)

Scarred By Your Parents

, , , , , | Healthy | February 23, 2018

(I’m a nurse. I’ve been assigned to a young girl who just had emergency surgery to save her life. She has a long incision down her stomach, which will end up as a scar. Her parents come to me about a week after the surgery, but before the wound has closed or the staples have been removed, clearly upset.)

Father: “When are we going to talk about reducing that scar?”

Me: “I’m sorry, but your daughter has barely started to heal. Let’s get her healthy before we worry about appearances.”

Father: “Excuse me? It’s bad enough she has [large birthmark]; now you’re going to add this, too?”

Mother: “What about covering it in Vitamin E oil?”

Me: “Ma’am, right now we’re worried about infections and how well she’s healing. We can talk about—”

Father: “No! You will fix her now!”

(I made up something about talking to the doctor about it and left. I truly pity this child, if that was their concern.)

Impossible To Bring Them Up-To-Date

, , , | Healthy | February 23, 2018

(I work at a disability law office and part of my job is to send out requests for medical records for our clients. We routinely get calls from the records departments of the doctors and hospitals we deal with, saying they don’t have the records requested. My favorite, though, is one from a clinic down the road whose record keeper has worked there for over five years. This conversation leaves me stunned to this day.)

Employee: “Hi, this is [Employee] from [Clinic], calling about the medical request you guys sent us. It says here you’re needing records from May 6th, 2016 to present date. What is present date?”

Me: “Um, present date would be now. Today.”

Employee: “Oh. Well, we don’t have any records for May 6th.”

Me: “Okay. What about after that? The client said she had been there three times since we last requested records. Was she there June 4th?”

Employee: “Let me check. Yeah, she was here.”

Me: “Okay, what about August 12th and September 17th?”

Employee: “Yeah, we have records for those days, but we don’t have any for May 6th.”

Me: “That’s fine. We just need any records that are there between May 6th and now.”

Employee: “But there aren’t any records for May 6th. She wasn’t here that day. There’s no records I can give you.”

Me: “No. Look: she was there on May 5th, okay? That’s the last date of service we got here in our records. So, we are sending for records from the day after May 5th, which is May 6th, all the way up to now. We need any records the doctor put in there within that time frame. It doesn’t have to be on May 6th, just anything after that time that’s there, okay?”

Records: “Okay… She wasn’t here after May 6th, though.”

Me: “You just told me that she was there in June, August, and September!”

Records: “Yeah, she was here on those days.”

Me: “Then, clearly, I need those records, since they are all after May 6th!”

Records: “Oh. Oh! You need all the records between the dates of May 6th and today?”

Me: “Yes, that is what I need!”

Records: “Okay, I’ll have them done today and brought over to you.”

(It took her another month to get us the records, and the clinic is right down the road.)

Literally The Walking Dead

, , , , | Healthy | February 22, 2018

(When I am 20, I trip over a log and twist my ankle. It never heals right, and for years I have pain every time I take a step, stood, or put any weight on my leg. When I am 25, I get medical insurance, and my doctor sends me to a specialist to look at my ankle. It’s December, and this my first meeting with the specialist. The doctor comes in and pulls out the MRI of my ankle. He looks at it and then looks over at me. Then, he looks back at the MRI, and then back at me, with a small crease forming between his eyebrows.)

Doctor: “How do you even walk?”

Me: “Painfully?”

Doctor: “Yeah, you would have been better off breaking your leg. There is a bunch of scar tissue wrapped around the tendons in your ankle, but the real problem is your ankle bone.”

Me: “What’s wrong with it?”

Doctor: “It’s pretty much no longer there.” *he shows me my MRI* “You see that spot on your ankle, the size of a quarter? That is the part of your ankle that is missing.”

Me: “Well… That seems… bad.”

Doctor: “Yeah, if you hit it hard enough, you could just shatter the entire thing.”

Me: “So, what are my options?”

Doctor: “We can either take bone from your hip and use it as a filler to fill the hole, or we can use cadaver bone. I recommend using cadaver bone so that we don’t further damage your skeleton. Unlike organs, we don’t need to really worry about rejection or shortage. Bones are good for up to five years after donation. “

Me: “Ooh, I can be part dead person?”

Doctor: “Yes, we can use cadaver bone.”

Me: “I want dead person!”

Doctor: “Cadaver bone.”

Me: “What is the difference between dead person and cadaver bone?”

(The doctor just looks at me for a minute and then starts to laugh.)

Doctor: “Nothing. Nothing is the difference.”

Me: “I’m going to be part zombie!”

(From then on, he called it dead person bone. I was scheduled to have the surgery at the end of January, but he called me the first week of January to tell me he had found me a fresh dead person to use, instead; apparently, it takes better. So, we moved up my surgery. It’s been eight years now, and I’m virtually pain-free thanks to a wonderful person and their family, who looked past a tragic time in their lives and thought to help others. I like to use my ankle to help start conversations on the importance of donation, and I have let my family know to please donate all parts of me that they can. I hope that one day I get to help someone be part zombie, too.)

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