Thursday, April 06, 2006

Doctors and Nurses

If I were to become a doctor (and I’m sure I haven’t left my run too late), I would come to the job already armed with a wealth of knowledge, purely from watching medical dramas on the telly.

According to every single medical drama there is (except maybe the Flying Doctors, because that’s pretty ‘80s and I’m too young to remember that), here are some hard and fast rules about medical treatment:

If an illness can’t be diagnosed by “doing bloods” or ordering a bajillion scans, then the only test left to try will be a lumbar puncture. Patients always need lumbar punctures. I can’t stress this enough people. Doesn’t matter if they have a broken arm, they will need a lumbar puncture.

If you are a young doctor on your first shift, for some reason you will be required to perform a dangerously complex and experimental operation, with no supervision. Probably during a blackout or infectious diseases scare. You’ll likely pull it off, especially if you are a good-looking young doctor, but you’ll have the surly head surgeon to deal with later (but don't worry, they'll probably be secretly in love with you).

If you are a young doctor on your first shift, it will probably be a 63-hour straight shift, with no sleeping and crisis after crisis after dramatic crisis. You’re likely to sneak in a quick nap in the café after turning off your pager. At which time, all patients under your care will simultaneously develop massive ‘complications’ and die before you can get back to the ward.

The only time you’ll see a gay patient in a hospital is when they are being treated for AIDS. Gays never ever get any other kind of illness.

All nurses at some stage will be required to “go beyond their authority” under circumstances of extreme pressure (blackout or infectious diseases scare – or possibly even stuck in a lift with a patient on the way to urgent surgery) and perform an emergency tracheotomy using a pocket-knife and a Bic pen with the insides pulled out.

If a patient is homeless/in an abusive relationship/mentally ill, “social services” won’t be able to help and you’ll have to take them into your own home, with disastrous consequences, solely for the purposes of developing your character and learning a lesson about trust and naivety.

You’ll be surprised by the number of times you’ll discover, through testing, that a patient’s parents aren’t the biological parents, and have been lying to their son/daughter for years and years. No matter what illness the patient has, you’ll have to break the news regarding their lying parents to them in dramatic circumstances for them to have any chance of recovery.

Chances are that dramatic irony will eventually determine your fate, and you’ll end up dying of some horrific disease, just to prove that even doctors are humans too.

I don’t understand why medical students need to undergo 17 years of intensive training. It’s all there on TV.


Veggie Friendly said...

Next time I get a crippling headache and collapse mysteriously I'll make sure someone sends me your way. Although promise me you won't use the lumbar puncture unless you've spent at least five minutes trying to diagnose me some other way.

On another matter, maybe if I read ALL your blog there would be a post on this somewhere, but a couple of times I've typed in your address with a 'www' in front of it and pulled up the 'Mega Bible Studies institute'. I think they're trying to hitch a free ride on your coattails.

Today their banner ad is for the 'Fart button' because 'you know you want to'. Those funny google ads and their contextually targeted ads.

tonch said...

Lol i love that

Not to mention that if someone comes in with symptoms that just don't add up. Chances are the cure has something to do conincidentally with something else in your life. Like if you're painting your house... the patient has lead poisoning.

And don't worry about sick little girls, they're always fine in the end.

JahTeh said...

I want a test that shows my relatives aren't biologically mine.

comicstriphero said...

Bookman - Mega Bible Studies Institute? It's no doubt a conspiracy. I'm sure I've dumped on Hillsong somewhere along the way (or if I haven't, I really should) and now they're out for some kind of really indirect and ineffective web-based revenge.

On the other hand, if you were looking for the Mega Bible Studies Institute and ended up here accidently, lucky you!

Tonch - good point on the lead poisoning. I think you're right. If you have a mystery disease, chances are you picked up something from your particularly eccentric line of work (taxidermist) or from your home (cockroach baits).

Jahteh - if you murder them, they will no longer be your relatives, will they?