Monday, July 6, 2020

Clinical conundrum

Dr. Grumpy: "Wow, you look great for 94! Well, what can I do for you?"

Mrs. Methuselah: "Thank you! My daughter asked me to come see you, she was concerned I had a neck injury.

Dr. Grumpy: "What's going on?"

Mrs. Methuselah: "Well, I moved into a new place over the winter. Now that it's summer the air conditioner turns on, and if it blows on the back of my neck it gets cold there and I get a chill down my spine."

Pause. I'm waiting, figuring there has to be more than that.

Dr. Grumpy: "Is there, uh, more than that?"

Mrs. Methuselah: "Nope. That's it. My daughter insisted I come in because she thinks I need an MRI of my neck. I think she's nuts."

Dr. Grumpy: "Does, uh, does anything make this better?"

Mrs. Methuselah: "Yeah, I don't sit near vents. If I have to, like in my reading chair, I wear a scarf.

Dr. Grumpy: "Does that work?"

Mrs. Methuselah: "It works fine. I told you. I think my daughter is nuts."

Dr. Grumpy (sets down pen): "I think you can tell your daughter that I said you're fine."


Anonymous said...

Since you have not met the daughter, I understand your reluctance to diagnose her. Nonetheless. I might have commented to Mrs. M that not only is she fine, her perspicacious assessment of her daughter is undeniable. Your forbearance is admirable.

Packer said...

It does not always follow that age equals incompetency. My mother at age 93 continue to live alone in her own Home. Just continue to live alone almost up to the time of her final problem. She was asked if she wanted to undergo a second round of fluid removal from her lungs I’ll never forget her saying the theme of last one alive it’s not the best thing in the world. . Her friends, her well loved contemporaries we’re all gone. Her children have their own lives as did her grandchildren. She asked to be made comfortable but shows no further medical proceduresWith the statement the only thing wrong with her was that she had become old, very old. They were some among the family and Among the medical staff Who perfectly understood and followed her wishes. Sometimes a difficult choice for children of an elderly parent, but to honor thy mother and father.

Ms. Donna said...

Yes, this is fine. But talk to daughter. W/O pt. there. My mom is 86 with dementia. She complains of this or that pain to me, but as soon as an MD asks about it, she does not have pain.

Background: she is a feisty New England Depression-era lady who was an RN. The kind that would stand if a doctor came into the room.

Seriously, she would not complain to her physician about a pain. Until I insisted and badgered the doc politely. A CT scan showed problems. Sigh.

I'm sure you have seen that before. And have talked to daughter.

A. Marie said...

Loud cheers to several here: Dr. G himself, Mrs. M, Packer's mom, and Packer himself. It's an art as well as a science to know when enough is enough.

Anonymous said...

My brother was elected to give one of the speeches at Mother's funeral, and found 'You are old Father William' in her roll-top desk when we were looking at the little scraps of paper that must have meant something important at one time or another (like how to clean fish, or a copy of the Royal Canadian Air Force Exercise Plans-she was in the American AF, so don't know why she kept the Canadian one, a pamphlet how to assemble ...). There are seven of us still around though she left this earth a few days after her 90th, and we had a smile in our tears when he had an opportunity to include it at St Andrew's that day.

Orli said...

I did a discharge for a very feisty 88-year-old the other day. She told me not to bother reading the instructions and such until her daughter was there to pick her up because “she doesn’t listen to anything I say, and insists I don’t know what I’m talking about, so at least if she hears you say it she’ll know it’s right.” Lady was completely with it and just needed a few days of supportive care but I loved her attitude.

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