In Sanity We Trust

Diversions: Medical Mayhem

1. A man comes into the ER and yells, "My wife's going to have her baby in the cab!" I grabbed my stuff, rushed out to the cab, lifted the lady's dress, and began to take off her under- wear. Suddenly I noticed that there were several cabs ---and I was in the wrong one.
- Dr. Mark MacDonald, San Francisco

2. At the beginning of my shift I placed a stethoscope on an elderly and slightly deaf female patient's anterior chest wall. "Big breaths," I instructed. "Yes, they used to be," replied the patient.
- Dr. Richard Byrnes, Seattle , WA

3. One day I had to be the bearer of bad news when I told a wife that her husband had died of a massive myocardial infarct. Not more than five minutes later, I heard her reporting to the rest of the family that he had died of a "massive internal fart."
- Dr. Susan Steinberg

4. During a patient's two week follow-up appointment with his cardiologist, he informed me, his doctor, that he was having trouble with one of his medications. "Which one?" I asked. "The patch, the Nurse told me to put on a new one every six hours and now I'm running out of places to put it!" I had him quickly undress and discovered what I hoped I wouldn't see. Yes, the man had over fifty patches on his body! Now, the instructions include removal of the old patch before applying a new one.
- Rebecca St. Clair, Norfolk , VA

5. While acquainting myself with a new elderly patient, I asked, "How long have you been bedridden?" After a look of complete confusion she answered, "Why, not for about twenty years - when my husband was alive."
- Dr. Steven Swanson-Corvallis, OR

6. I was performing rounds at the hospital one morning and while checking up on a woman I asked, "So how's your breakfast this morning?" "It's very good, except for the Kentucky Jelly. I can't seem to get used to the taste" the patient replied. I then asked to see the jelly and the woman produced a foil packet labeled "KY Jelly."
- Dr. Leonard Kransdorf, Detroit , MI

Medical Notes from Patient Charts

"The patient complains of a dry cough that hurts when he coughs and also when he takes deep breaths for 4 days."

"While in the ER, she was examined, X-rated, and sent home."

"Patient had waffles for breakfast, and anorexia for lunch."

"The patient states there is a burning pain in his penis which goes to his feet."

"Patient was alert and unresponsive."

"Patient has chest pain if she lies on her left side for over a year."

"The patient has no past history of suicides."

"The patient left the hospital feeling much better except for her original complaints."

"Patient has left his white blood cells at another hospital.

"The other foot has the missing toe."