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Old 04-14-2022   #241
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Night Nurse, The Pain Is Getting Worse
Canada, Hospital, Ignoring & Inattentive, Lazy/Unhelpful, Nurses | Healthy | May 15, 2019
CONTENT WARNING: This story contains content of a medical nature. It is not intended as medical advice.

(I am a 22-year-old female and have always had problems with my feet, which are completely flat and also wide. I’ve been having intense pain in my left foot for a few years, and not one doctor or specialist I’ve gone to has had an explanation. Finally, I am told by a foot surgeon that I have a deformity in both feet that has caused arthritis and is the reason I am unable to walk properly. I am advised to have two metal screws implanted in my left foot to alleviate the pain and hopefully correct the structure of my foot. I go in for surgery and this happens when I stay overnight after the operation. “Nurse” is my day nurse and “Night Nurse” is the nurse assigned to give me the pain medication during the night.)

Nurse: “I’m going to take your vitals and let you get some rest. Your night nurse will come in to give you the pain medication soon. Can you swallow pills?”

(I tell her I can and expect to have no problems. Boy, am I wrong. Over the course of the night, I am pretty loopy from the anesthesia and all I want to do is sleep. A night nurse comes in to take my vitals again sometime in the night and says someone else will give me pain medication later. This repeats for some time with her and one other nurse until the morning, where I’ve recovered enough to realize I am in intense pain and nobody has given me the pain medication I need. Early the next morning, I am exhausted and crying from the pain when my parents come to see me.)

Mom: “What happened?! Why are you crying?!”

Me: *crying* “I’ve been up almost all night and nobody gave me pain medication!”

Mom & Dad: “WHAT?!”

(They track down a nurse and repeat what I’ve said.)

Nurse: “Um, a night nurse would have given you medication. You’re supposed to take it every three hours.”

Me: “Well, no one gave me anything. They woke me up to take my vitals several times and that was it!”

Nurse: “I’m going to look into this. Let me talk to the other nurses.”

(She leaves for a bit, then comes back with the night nurse who I recognize from last night. They both don’t look happy.)

Night Nurse: “We gave you medication last night. You just don’t remember it.”

Me: “You and some other nurse woke me up to take my vitals and said someone else will give me the medication. If I took the medication, I wouldn’t be in so much pain!”

Nurse: *hands me a pill bottle* “Just to make sure, these are what you’re supposed to take. Have you had these at all?”

Me: “No! I haven’t taken any pills!”

Night Nurse: “Well, did you tell someone that you needed it?”

(My parents and the other nurse just stare at her in disbelief.)

Mom: “Of course she needs it! You’re in charge of making sure she gets the medication on time!”

Night Nurse: *snotty* “She’s a big girl. She has to tell us if she needs it or not!”

(My nurse rushes the night nurse out before the situation escalates. My parents are furious and my nurse is also frustrated. I’m angry, too, of course, but more exhausted, and I just want to go home to recover in peace.)

Nurse: “I am so sorry. I had no idea this happened. There is no excuse for that. You are absolutely right: the night staff is responsible to get you that medication and they should have been keeping an eye on you.”

Me: “Can I just go home? I really don’t want to be here anymore…”

Nurse: “Unfortunately, now that I know you haven’t had any medication, I have to keep you here to catch up on the doses. I can’t send you home until I get this in your system and make sure you’re okay.”

(I was more upset by this, but I knew she had to do her job and didn’t say anything else. Over the next few hours, I was finally given the pain medication and I basically slept all day until she told me I could go home in the evening. Thanks to the night nurse’s negligence, I had to keep taking the medication for an extra few days until the pain got under control. We filed an official complaint against the nurse, but nothing has happened so far.)
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Old 04-14-2022   #242
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Coughing Up A Better Diagnosis
Colorado, Denver, Doctor/Physician, Jerk, Medical Office, USA | Healthy | May 14, 2019
(I have a history of coughing up blood for no particular reason. Despite a lack of a diagnosis explaining why it happens, it has happened three times. Two out of the three times, it was copious amounts. The first time, it happened when I was 16 and within a few hours, I had coughed up several cups before I was able to get to a hospital. A vein in my right lung had burst! The docs never figured out why it happened, but it happened again when I was 18. Fortunately, it was only a few mouthfuls – it ended up just being a busted capillary. Then, it happens again when I am 22. I have dealt with multiple nurses and doctors in the ER down the street telling me I am probably just exaggerating, which is incredibly infuriating. To prove that I am telling the truth, I begin to collect the blood by spitting it into a container and keeping the container in the fridge. It’s disgusting. Between Wednesday afternoon and Friday morning, I have coughed up and collected almost two cups of blood. I have a bronchoscopy at a different hospital go bad – a negative reaction to the light anesthesia they give me – so they send me back to the ER to be admitted. It is then that I deal with the most stuck up doctor in my life. I have no makeup on — obviously, who has time to worry about that when one’s life is possibly on the line? — and in the past that’s led people to mistake me for a high schooler more than once. It seems to fool this doctor, too, unfortunately. He approaches me with a haughty, unbelieving demeanor, and treats me like some sort of hysterical, loony teen. I start arguing with him about my honesty in the situation, and it begins to escalate to a frustrated yelling match. While I regret resorting to yelling at a doctor, I don’t regret how this ends. Not one bit. I finally reach a breaking point, yank my purse from my mother’s arms, shove the container of blood at the doctor, and scream.)

Me: “THIS IS WHAT I’VE BEEN COUGHING UP!”

(The doctor’s face goes completely white as he gapes at me, stares at the container, looks back at me, and takes it to run out of the room. Another doctor comes in right then, and the first doc grabs his arm to drag him out with him. They close the door behind them, but there is a huge window in the door, so I can see both of them holding up the container, arguing, and acting generally panicked. Join the club, dudes. When Doctor Jerkface comes back in, he has a huge change in attitude; he’s now sweet, attentive, and eager to help.)

Doctor: “All right, honey, don’t you worry. We’re going to admit you to the ICU right away. We’re going to take care of you and figure out why this is happening.”

(I let myself become the smug jerk in the room and give him a victorious smirk.)

Me: “You’re d*** right, you’re going to.”
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Old 04-14-2022   #243
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It’s Their First Time Or It’s Going To Be A Big Baby
Hospital, Ignoring & Inattentive, Non-Dialogue, Northern Ireland, Reception, UK | Healthy | May 13, 2019
Several years ago I had a summer job working as a clerical officer in an NHS Hospital. One of my reception duties involved checking patients into the antenatal clinics. The receptionist explained to me that when patients arrived for the clinic I had to take their name, and if it was their first appointment, I had to write “no file” on their letter and bring it down to the nursing station. Women who had previously been to the clinic did have a file, so I had to pull out their file, check their details were correct, and bring the file down to the nursing station.

The receptionist showed me how to do the first few arrivals and then said I could take over. The next patient arrived for her antenatal appointment. I smiled at her and her husband, greeted them warmly, and the woman handed me her appointment letter. “Okay, Mrs. [Patient],” I said, trying to appear professional. “Is this your first appointment?”

The woman looked surprised and glanced down at her belly. “No…” she said. She was quite large by this stage! Her husband just smiled, clearly amused. “Oh… Sorry!” I stammered, then retrieved her file, checked her details, and asked her to take a seat in the waiting area. As she and her husband walked off, the receptionist leaned over to me. “Yeah, it’ll be obvious to you if it’s their first appointment!” she said, smiling. I apologised again, but the receptionist told me not to worry, as we all make mistakes!

The receptionist went on holiday, and I managed to cover reception surprisingly well. And during the next three antenatal clinics, I never again made the mistake of asking a woman obviously in advanced stages of pregnancy if it was her first appointment!
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Old 04-14-2022   #244
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“Women Troubles” Is NOT Women Causing Trouble
Australia, Bigotry, Doctor/Physician, Jerk, Lazy/Unhelpful, Medical Office | Healthy | May 11, 2019
CONTENT WARNING: This story contains content of a medical nature. It is not intended as medical advice.

(From my first period at age 12, I have been having horrible pain with each menstruation. Several months later, the pain is so bad that I can’t stand. My mother is alarmed and takes me to the ED. They suspect appendicitis and operate, only to find a healthy appendix. I am referred to a gynaecologist.)

Gynaecologist #1 : “So, I hear you’ve had a bit of a sore tummy, huh?”

Me: “Yes, it really hurts, and I—“

Gynaecologist #1 : “Now, [My Name]. You’re grown up now. This is part of being a woman; you just have to put up with it, all right? Take some paracetamol when the pain starts and get on with it, all right?”

(I’m embarrassed to have caused such a fuss and take what he says to heart. For the next 12 years, I put up with horrendous, increasing pain, assuming all women go through it. Every cycle, without fail, I spend a minimum of 12 hours in such pain I am vomiting. It gets so that I am in pain all the time, even when I’m not menstruating. Finally, at 25, I have an epic period of 17 days of vomit-worthy pain. My parents convince me to go to the ED in my new city where I live.

The ED doctors give me a high dose of morphine and check for acute problems, then refer me to a gynaecologist. I am already convinced that this one will think I am wasting his time, too, and begin rehearsing apologies. Finally, I meet the new gynaecologist.)

Gynaecologist #2 : “So, I hear you’ve been sore?”

Me: “Yes…” *describes situation*

Gynaecologist #2 : “Can I feel your stomach? Hmm. Okay, I’m not going to, but if I pressed hard, would it hurt?”

Me: “Yes.”

Gynaecologist #2 : *taking his hand away* “Does it hurt now?”

Me: “Yes.”

(The gynaecologist went a little grim and told me that I needed an operation immediately. He fit me in the following week and ended up excising a LOT of tissue. It turned out that I had a condition that caused infertility if it was untreated, and the main symptom was immense pain. Luckily, the disease hadn’t yet damaged my tubes so I can still conceive naturally. With medication to manage ovulation and possibly more operations should the tissue regrow, I should be completely healthy. Most importantly, I’m not in constant pain. How lucky that I found a doctor who knew that “women troubles” was no longer a proper medical diagnosis!)
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Old 04-15-2022   #245
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Let’s Hope His Brother Isn’t A Doctor
Doctor/Physician, Funny Names, Kansas, Medical Office, USA | Healthy | May 20, 2019
(My nana takes me to my doctor for the first time in a couple of years. The doctor is Indian, with an Indian accent and an Indian surname that starts with “Mu.”)

Nana: “Thank you, Dr. Mufasa! Oh…”

(Luckily, the doctor thought it was hilarious, and we joked that she must get that a lot from kids since she’s also a pediatrician.)
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Old 04-15-2022   #246
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Bringing Professionalism To Its Knees
Australia, Bizarre, Editors' Choice, Health & Body, Medical Office, Patients, Queensland | Healthy | May 20, 2019
(I’m a young adult woman about to have my first gynaecological examination. I have no idea what I’m doing, so my doctor is walking me through it step by step. For reference, the examination table is quite narrow to allow for easy movement around it.)

Doctor: “We need you to lie back on the table with your feet at the end, and then spread your knees. Keep your feet together. Then cover yourself with the towel and let me know you’re ready.”

(She turns away to put on gloves, and I have a moment of doubt.)

Me: “Uh, how far apart do you want my knees?”

Doctor: “As far as you can.”

(I shrug and obey, following her instructions. A moment later, the doctor turns back around and I get to enjoy a moment of bug-eyed shock before professionalism covers it.)

Me: “I used to be a gymnast.”

Doctor: “Maybe not quite that far, [My Name].”

(I had dropped my knees below the level of the table with no effort or strain. Turned out she wanted something closer to a 90-degree angle. It did teach her to be more specific with instructions in the future, though!)
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Old 04-15-2022   #247
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The Weighting Room
Doctor/Physician, Ignoring & Inattentive, Illinois, Medical Office, Non-Dialogue, USA | Healthy | May 19, 2019
I was taking in my two-week-old baby for her checkup. My husband and older son were with me since we had another errand to run before heading home. My clinic had recently moved to a bigger location a few blocks away from their old location and had new equipment recently unpacked.

I gently placed my baby, born 7 lbs and 12 oz, on the scale. She left the hospital weighing 7 lbs 6 oz, which is normal since their weight fluctuates after birth. The scale showed 7 lbs 3 oz. My husband and I were baffled, since the baby was practically breastfed every hour and if she wasn’t sleeping she was eating. She was also way heavier than at birth.

The doctor began setting me up for weigh-in appointments with a nurse, while I began to panic and doubt about my breastfeeding capabilities.

My husband is a “fixer.” He can’t help it and is constantly fixing things at home or improving them, so, of course, he began fiddling with the baby scale when the doctor briefly left the room which, in addition to my panicked state, started to annoy me. That’s when he pulled out two pieces of foam from under the scale that were clearly part of the packaging from when it was moved from the other clinic. The doctor came back and was stunned. We weighed the baby again and she was 8 lbs, 6 oz. The doctor had a stunned look in his eyes as he checked us out, and I can just imagine the panic as he thought back to how many babies had been weighed on a scale that hadn’t been properly set up.
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Old 04-15-2022   #248
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The Ugly Mouth Is The One With The Ugly Words
Dentist, Germany, Jerk | Healthy | May 18, 2019
(As a teenager I had braces that were – in some way – done incorrectly and over the course of the treatment the enamel of my teeth started to deteriorate. Since I was a quiet and shy teenager, I didn’t speak out and got in a somewhat vicious cycle of dental hygiene since properly cleaning my teeth started to hurt. After a while, I even stopped going to the dentist because I was so ashamed. However, in my twenties, I start seeing an amazing dentist who is very empathetic and doesn’t judge. Session by session, we start ironing things out, but for a very special procedure, he transfers me to a dental surgeon. This takes place at my first appointment before she even takes a look at my teeth.)

Dentist: “Hello, [My Name]. Nice to meet you! May I ask: how old are you?”

Me: “Hi… Um… I’m 24. Why?”

Dentist: “Yeah, I thought so. But from your x-rays, I’d guessed you would be 60.”

Me: *embarrassed* “Yeah, I know. But I try to contain the damage now.”

Dentist: “You’ve got to start cleaning your teeth better!”

Me: “I’m cleaning them at least twice a day now. If you take a look you’ll see. I really started taking dental hygiene very seriously and trying to save what can be saved. But the damage has been done. Still, I really clean my teeth.”

Dentist: “Don’t give me that spiel. I’ve seen how many fillings you have. You do a terrible job of keeping your teeth healthy.”

Me: *miserable* “Yes. I’m very sorry. I know.”

Dentist: “You know how ugly such teeth are, right? You’re 24. Probably looking for a nice girl to marry someday. But I’m gonna tell you right now: with those teeth, you’ll never find a girl!

Me: *on the verge of tears* “I’m really trying to take better care. [Dentist] always told me I’m really doing a good job now. I haven’t had a new cavity in two years.”

Dentist: “Well, I don’t care. Your mouth is ugly. And you’re probably gonna die alone with such bad mouth hygiene. Now, go make an appointment with my receptionist for next month so we can start making you look human again.”

(I didn’t want to object to her, but I didn’t make an appointment and even almost quit the ongoing procedures with my regular dentist. He had to talk to me for an hour until I was ready to keep going. He also said he wouldn’t transfer patients to this dental surgeon anymore.)
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Old 04-16-2022   #249
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A Truly Laborious Line Of Questioning
Hospital, Ignoring & Inattentive, Jerk, Nurses, UK | Healthy | May 23, 2019
(My sister has recently gone into labour. I have come to the hospital to drop off some things she forgot to pack. As I head into her room, I hear her screaming.)

Sister: “I’M IN LABOUR! WHAT DO YOU THINK?!”

(I see she has been screaming at a nurse. The nurse blushes and runs out.)

Me: “What was that about?”

Sister: “She walks in and looks at my records, then asks, ‘Is it possible you’re pregnant?’ I ask her if she’s joking and she starts scolding me for being insensitive to pregnant women. We’re on a f****** maternity ward!”

(I burst out laughing, and after a while, my sister did, as well. The head nurse dropped by later to apologise for the nurse’s behaviour. My sister would have been fine with it and apologised, too, until the head nurse let slip that the nurse refused to even acknowledge that her question was in bad taste given her location and the context, and threatened to have my sister removed for abusive behaviour. I saw the nurse again later, complaining to a cashier in the cafe about having to help stroke victims bathe.)
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Old 04-16-2022   #250
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What Kills You In Vegas Kills You Everywhere
Hotel, Las Vegas, Nevada, Non-Dialogue, Patients, Stupid, Tourists/Travel, USA | Healthy | May 22, 2019
I work for a hotel in Las Vegas. While working security one night, I am sent up to a guest’s room who is having an allergic reaction. I arrive and the man is in a pretty bad way. He has his shirt off, his chest is covered with hives, and his throat is closing so fast he can’t speak and soon may not even be able to breathe.

I call for the paramedics and they arrive fairly quickly. They give the man a shot, and his allergy symptoms quickly begin to get better. When he can finally speak, one paramedic asks if the man is allergic to any kind of food. The man admits he’s severely allergic to shellfish. The paramedic then asks if the man has eaten any shellfish lately. The man then says, “I just came back from a seafood buffet and ate a lot of it because it doesn’t count when you’re in Vegas.”

So many people see the city slogan, “What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas,” and think Las Vegas is some kind of negative zone where anything you do doesn’t affect real life.
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Old 04-16-2022   #251
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Unable To Identify The Issue Is Not About Identity
Funny Names, Ignoring & Inattentive, Therapist, USA | Healthy | May 22, 2019
(I am at a therapist’s office for my first appointment with her. She is not my first therapist, so I have a fairly good idea of what to look for. My name has a very common nickname — I’ll pretend it’s Katelyn and Kate — and people will often start using the nickname without thinking. I am called back to meet with her.)

Therapist: “So, Katelyn, do you prefer Katelyn or Kate?”

Me: “I don’t care; either is fine.”

Therapist: “But which one do you prefer?”

Me: “I mean, when I’m in a situation where there’s someone whose actual name is Kate, I prefer to use Katelyn so people don’t get confused. But other than that, I really don’t care.”

Therapist: “Your name is an important part of your self-identity. I want to respect that. Which name do you want me to use?”

Me: *quite frustrated by now* “I don’t care! Either one is fine! You can call me Kate, you can call me Katelyn, or you can switch back and forth; it doesn’t matter!”

(She still didn’t get it. Somehow I made it through the rest of the appointment, but I never went back there. As a therapist, listening is a hugely important part of your job. If you won’t listen to me about s
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Painkillers Morphing Into Something Else
California, Hospital, Nurses, Stupid, USA | Healthy | May 21, 2019
(During an annual summer trip to California, I start having abdominal pains. My dad brings me to a local clinic, and from there I get directed to the ER because of possible appendicitis. Once there, they hook me up to an IV. I’m a little paranoid around needles, so I ask them what exactly they’re putting in the IV. I also happen to have a fear of inebriation, as well as a fear of being forcibly injected with addictive drugs.)

Nurse: “Saline fluids and some morphine.”

Me: “Morphine? Why morphine?”

Nurse: “You said you were in pain.”

Me: “I am, but I don’t think it’s extreme enough to justify morphine!”

Nurse: “Okay, we can take the morphine out. You’re sure you don’t need any painkillers?”

Me: “I mean, some painkillers would be nice, but not something that extreme.”

Nurse: “Well, we can give you the morphine if you want.”

Me: “No morphine!”

Nurse: “So, you don’t need painkillers?”

(This conversation repeats a few times before I eventually tell her I don’t need painkillers and let her hook me up to the saline fluids. Some time passes, and eventually, another nurse comes to check on me.)

Nurse #2 : “And have you had any painkillers?”

Me: “Well, they kept offering me morphine, but I didn’t want that. It seems a little extreme.”

Nurse #2 : “Wait, so, no one offered you any Tylenol?”

Me: “No!”

(The second nurse brought me some Tylenol, and that did seem to help, but I will forever be confused about the first nurse who seemed to think that morphine was the only painkiller in existence.)

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Pregnant With An Angry Appendix
Hospital, Ignoring & Inattentive, Lazy/Unhelpful, Missouri, Nurses, USA | Healthy | May 21, 2019
(I am 19 years old and I’ve been experiencing intense pain and vomiting bile all night. I go to urgent care and am diagnosed with appendicitis and given pain meds before being transported to the hospital around 11:00 am.)

ER Nurse: “We need to give you an MRI. Take this pregnancy test, and then we can figure out what’s going on.”

Mom: “She has already been diagnosed with appendicitis at urgent care; they called and we are here for treatment.”

ER Nurse: “Well, they can only diagnose, not treat, so we need you to take the tests.”

Mom: “She will not take the tests again. You need to look in your files and find the test results they sent over.”

(I ended up going into surgery at almost 10:00 pm after being in even worse pain all day, with no meds because I wasn’t in a room but in the waiting room. I was released at 9:00 am the next day, went septic that night, and spent another three days in the hospital. We later learned that my appendix had ruptured while I was waiting and they still sent me home.)
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Old 04-16-2022   #253
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Let’s Hope His Brother Isn’t A Doctor
Doctor/Physician, Funny Names, Kansas, Medical Office, USA | Healthy | May 20, 2019
(My nana takes me to my doctor for the first time in a couple of years. The doctor is Indian, with an Indian accent and an Indian surname that starts with “Mu.”)

Nana: “Thank you, Dr. Mufasa! Oh…”

(Luckily, the doctor thought it was hilarious, and we joked that she must get that a lot from kids since she’s also a pediatrician.)
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Old 04-16-2022   #254
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Bringing Professionalism To Its Knees
Australia, Bizarre, Editors' Choice, Health & Body, Medical Office, Patients, Queensland | Healthy | May 20, 2019
(I’m a young adult woman about to have my first gynaecological examination. I have no idea what I’m doing, so my doctor is walking me through it step by step. For reference, the examination table is quite narrow to allow for easy movement around it.)

Doctor: “We need you to lie back on the table with your feet at the end, and then spread your knees. Keep your feet together. Then cover yourself with the towel and let me know you’re ready.”

(She turns away to put on gloves, and I have a moment of doubt.)

Me: “Uh, how far apart do you want my knees?”

Doctor: “As far as you can.”

(I shrug and obey, following her instructions. A moment later, the doctor turns back around and I get to enjoy a moment of bug-eyed shock before professionalism covers it.)

Me: “I used to be a gymnast.”

Doctor: “Maybe not quite that far, [My Name].”

(I had dropped my knees below the level of the table with no effort or strain. Turned out she wanted something closer to a 90-degree angle. It did teach her to be more specific with instructions in the future, though!)
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Old 04-16-2022   #255
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The Weighting Room
Doctor/Physician, Ignoring & Inattentive, Illinois, Medical Office, Non-Dialogue, USA | Healthy | May 19, 2019
I was taking in my two-week-old baby for her checkup. My husband and older son were with me since we had another errand to run before heading home. My clinic had recently moved to a bigger location a few blocks away from their old location and had new equipment recently unpacked.

I gently placed my baby, born 7 lbs and 12 oz, on the scale. She left the hospital weighing 7 lbs 6 oz, which is normal since their weight fluctuates after birth. The scale showed 7 lbs 3 oz. My husband and I were baffled, since the baby was practically breastfed every hour and if she wasn’t sleeping she was eating. She was also way heavier than at birth.

The doctor began setting me up for weigh-in appointments with a nurse, while I began to panic and doubt about my breastfeeding capabilities.

My husband is a “fixer.” He can’t help it and is constantly fixing things at home or improving them, so, of course, he began fiddling with the baby scale when the doctor briefly left the room which, in addition to my panicked state, started to annoy me. That’s when he pulled out two pieces of foam from under the scale that were clearly part of the packaging from when it was moved from the other clinic. The doctor came back and was stunned. We weighed the baby again and she was 8 lbs, 6 oz. The doctor had a stunned look in his eyes as he checked us out, and I can just imagine the panic as he thought back to how many babies had been weighed on a scale that hadn’t been properly set up.
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Old 04-16-2022   #256
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The Ugly Mouth Is The One With The Ugly Words
Dentist, Germany, Jerk | Healthy | May 18, 2019
(As a teenager I had braces that were – in some way – done incorrectly and over the course of the treatment the enamel of my teeth started to deteriorate. Since I was a quiet and shy teenager, I didn’t speak out and got in a somewhat vicious cycle of dental hygiene since properly cleaning my teeth started to hurt. After a while, I even stopped going to the dentist because I was so ashamed. However, in my twenties, I start seeing an amazing dentist who is very empathetic and doesn’t judge. Session by session, we start ironing things out, but for a very special procedure, he transfers me to a dental surgeon. This takes place at my first appointment before she even takes a look at my teeth.)

Dentist: “Hello, [My Name]. Nice to meet you! May I ask: how old are you?”

Me: “Hi… Um… I’m 24. Why?”

Dentist: “Yeah, I thought so. But from your x-rays, I’d guessed you would be 60.”

Me: *embarrassed* “Yeah, I know. But I try to contain the damage now.”

Dentist: “You’ve got to start cleaning your teeth better!”

Me: “I’m cleaning them at least twice a day now. If you take a look you’ll see. I really started taking dental hygiene very seriously and trying to save what can be saved. But the damage has been done. Still, I really clean my teeth.”

Dentist: “Don’t give me that spiel. I’ve seen how many fillings you have. You do a terrible job of keeping your teeth healthy.”

Me: *miserable* “Yes. I’m very sorry. I know.”

Dentist: “You know how ugly such teeth are, right? You’re 24. Probably looking for a nice girl to marry someday. But I’m gonna tell you right now: with those teeth, you’ll never find a girl!

Me: *on the verge of tears* “I’m really trying to take better care. [Dentist] always told me I’m really doing a good job now. I haven’t had a new cavity in two years.”

Dentist: “Well, I don’t care. Your mouth is ugly. And you’re probably gonna die alone with such bad mouth hygiene. Now, go make an appointment with my receptionist for next month so we can start making you look human again.”

(I didn’t want to object to her, but I didn’t make an appointment and even almost quit the ongoing procedures with my regular dentist. He had to talk to me for an hour until I was ready to keep going. He also said he wouldn’t transfer patients to this dental surgeon anymore.)

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This Vet Is Worming His Way Around Your Cat
Bad Behavior, Canada, Doctor/Physician, Ontario, Vet | Healthy | May 17, 2019
(I set up an appointment for my cat to get his annual exam and vaccines at the vet clinic that my boyfriend and I have been taking him to since we first brought him home at three months old. He is now two-and-a-half years old, meaning with all his kitten appointments — booster shots, sterilization, etc. — we have taken him in a total of seven times prior to this. Up until this point, we have always seen the same vet, and our cat is very comfortable with her, often purring through his appointments. The day before the appointment, I get a phone call

Receptionist: “Hi, [My Name]! I’m calling to confirm [Cat]’s appointment for tomorrow at [time two-and-a-half hours later than the appointment was scheduled for].”

Me: “Um, I scheduled that appointment for [appointment time].”

Receptionist: “We don’t have any slots available at [time]. We can try to fit you in between appointments, but I can’t guarantee time for a full exam and vaccines.”

Me: “I scheduled this appointment weeks ago, even picking a later date, because [time] worked best with my boyfriend’s schedule and he’s the only one who drives. There’s no way you can give me the time my appointment was scheduled for?”

Receptionist: “I have it in my system that your appointment was scheduled for [two-and-a-half hours later].”

Me: “Whatever, I’ll take it, I guess. I want to stress though that I would never have picked an appointment that late; there’s no way this error was on my end.”

Receptionist: “Okay, well, don’t forget to bring in a fecal sample.”

Me: “Fecal sample? We’ve never had to bring a fecal sample before.”

Receptionist: “It’s a standard part of every annual physical.”

Me: “It’s not going to cost anything extra, is it? I just moved two weeks ago, and it cost more than I’d thought, so my money’s pretty tight for the rest of the month. I can’t afford to pay anymore than what I am for the physical and vaccines.”

Receptionist: “It’s a standard part of every physical; don’t worry.”

(Luckily, my boyfriend is able to move some things around so I don’t have to take the cat on the bus to get to the appointment. We get to the appointment and discover that the vet our cat has seen since his very first appointment is not the vet he will be seeing this time. The vet who examines our cat seems incredibly underqualified, and much more concerned about selling us products we do not need than about the health and wellbeing of our cat. It’s worth noting here that while he is technically a Domestic Short Hair, we’re reasonably certain our cat has some Bengal in him, due to his size. He measures around three feet long, which is double the average length for a DSH. After weighing our cat

Vet: “He weighs 15 pounds!”

Me: “Well, he is pretty big, so that’s not too surprising; that’s only a couple pounds more than I thought.”

Vet: “He needs to lose weight! He should be an eight-pound cat! What are you guys feeding him?!” *looking at boyfriend*

Boyfriend: “He lives with her, so she can answer that better than I can.”

Me: “Up until two weeks ago he was on [Brand] dry food, which I found gave him that little bit of pudge on his tummy, but he only gained about a pound or two. I would have changed his food, but my old roommate had a cat with a really sensitive stomach, and her cat couldn’t handle the food we had [Cat] on. When I moved I changed him to [Cetter Crand], and he’s been doing a lot better on it. He also gets one can of wet food each night, but we don’t have a strict brand for that; it’s just to make sure he gets enough water, since he’s pretty bad at drinking enough.”

Vet: “Do you free-feed him?”

Boyfriend: “Yeah, we always have.”

Me: “It’s monitored free-feeding, though, now. My old roommate like to truly free-feed, but I always make sure to track how much he’s eating. He always has food in his bowl, but I measure it and make sure he’s only getting two servings of dry food, and his one serving of wet food.”

Vet: “You need to stop free-feeding. He only needs three servings of food a day.”

Me: “As I said, I measure his food. He’s always been a grazer, though, so putting him on a feeding schedule won’t work, because he only eats a few bites at a time. It takes him anywhere from 8 to 12 hours to empty his bowl.”

Vet: “Well, it might be hard at first, but eventually he’ll learn that if he doesn’t eat when the food goes out, he won’t eat at all.”

Me: “No, I’m not doing that to my cat. He’s not that pudgy, and aside from that, I just adopted a second cat, and she also free-feeds. It’s working really well, considering she needs a smaller serving size, and quite frankly, they both undereat anyway.”

(The vet then spends another ten minutes scolding us for letting our cat get so “horrifically overweight,” and trying to sell us a specialty diet food that is way out of our price range. She finally gives up when my boyfriend and I start getting snappy with her.)

Vet: “Okay, how has [Cat]’s behaviour been lately?”

Me: “As I mentioned a few minutes ago, I just adopted a second cat three days ago, so right now they’re having their territory and dominance disputes. Before that, though, there was nothing out of the ordinary.”

Vet: *reaches into cupboard and pulls out a spray bottle* “You should try this; it’s a synthetic pheromone that mimics the one mother cats let off to calm down kittens. It can help with the fighting if the cats aren’t getting along.”

Me: “Thanks, but I’m not going to bother right now. I don’t really have the money for that, and it’s only been three days. When [Cat] was introduced to my old roommate’s cats, it took him about a week to adjust. If it goes on longer than that, then we’ll look into it.”

(The vet then spends another five minutes trying to pressure us into buying the spray, and implying that the two cats should be best friends by this point.)

Vet: “Have you had [Cat] treated for fleas?”

Me: “Yes! Because I was moving, and my old roommate was having someone take my room, who has her own cat, we treated all the cats in the apartment over the two weeks before I left. His last treatment was the day before I left, and that should have prevented him from getting anything during the move, as well.”

Vet: “You did just bring a new cat home, though. Was she treated?”

Me: “Yes, the shelter treated her shortly before we adopted her. I also looked her over a couple times to be sure.”

Vet: “Well, they should each be treated at least one more time before winter. I can do a course of [High-End Brand] treatment for [astronomically high price], if you want to set an appointment for that.”

Me: “No, thank you. They’re both indoor cats and only go outside on the leash occasionally in the summer. When they do, I give them a preventative OTC treatment from [Pet Store], and I check them to be safe. I also do a couple preventative treatments if they haven’t gone outside, just in case something makes it into the building, because he sometimes runs into the hallway.”

(Cue more selling pressure, and scolding. By the time that finishes, we are half an hour into the appointment, and the only part of the exam she’s done is weighing the cat. She finally starts the rest of the exam, and we notice right away that she isn’t handling our cat properly at all. She has made no effort to get him comfortable with her; instead she is flipping between being overly hesitant and grabbing him roughly. He starts to get defensive, trying to jump off the table, and even baring his teeth at her, which is incredibly out of character. He’s a very social, non-aggressive cat, usually. I try to comfort him.)

Vet: “Stay out of the way.” *shoos me back*

(The vet skips half his exam, refusing to go near his mouth or paws, and not offering us any information on his health. When the exam finishes and the vaccination is completed, it is time to pay for the visit. The total was much higher than we anticipated, even with estimating higher than last year’s physical and vaccination.)

Me: “Why is it so much?”

Receptionist: “That’s because the fecal sample is an additional charge.”

Me: “You mean the fecal sample I was told was ‘standard for an annual exam,’ and led to believe was included in the price? It’s only a few dollars less than the exam was!”

(At this point, our cat was angry, stressed, and trying to claw his way out of his carrier, so we swallowed our anger and paid in the interest of getting our cat home as quickly as possible. It took me 20 minutes to convince my boyfriend — who hadn’t been able to make any of the previous vet appointments — that that is not how they usually go, and that the old vet would have been done the exam in the time this one spend scolding us and trying to sell us things. It took an additional 20 minutes to calm our cat down. The fecal test results came back the next day and I was informed it was ringworm, then given information that contradicted that diagnosis. I took both of our cats to a different vet a few days later, and upon explaining to the new vet what happened, he was appalled. He took extra care to make sure both cats were comfortable, especially before going near their tummies. When he received the fecal test results from the first clinic, I was informed it was actually roundworm and had probably come from one of the other cats at the shelter. I had them treated immediately and confirmed with the veterinarian that had we treated them for the original diagnosis, it would have done nothing to help, as ringworm is a fungal infection, whereas roundworm is a parasite. Ultimately, it worked out for the best, because we found a vet who truly cares about the wellbeing of our cats. And the cats, for the record, are best friends now, no synthetic pheromone spray needed.)
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Old 04-16-2022   #258
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Desperately Looking For A Positive
Bigotry, Doctor/Physician, Jerk, Medical Office, UK | Healthy | May 16, 2019
(I have gone to the GP with recurring dizziness. The doctor is new and we have never met prior to today. I am male.)

Doctor: *feeling the underneath of my jaw* “How long have you experienced dizziness?”

Me: “About three weeks. I think it might be an inner ear infection, but I don’t have any other symptoms.”

Doctor: “I see, and does it…”

(His eyes narrow onto my chest tattoo.)

Doctor: “You have tattoos?”

Me: “Just this one.”

Doctor: “Hmm, it’s possible this could be HIV and/or AIDS.”

Me: “WHAT?!”

Doctor: “It’s a pretty serious condition which can spread from infected needles.”

Me: “I know what it is. It just surprises me that you think dizziness and a tattoo would make you jump to HIV. This is a twenty-odd-year-old tattoo by the way.”

Doctor: “Hmm… Your medical history shows you have had STI tests before, and with your lifestyle—“

Me: “My ‘lifestyle’ has nothing to do with this, if I get your meaning.” *assumes he has seen my husband listed as my next of kin in my records* “And I have only had one STI test in my life, which was done as part of a sexual health class when I was at college. Now, HIV usually begins to show signs within ten years of contracting it. My tattoo is over twenty years old, and my STI test was what, ten years ago? I do not have HIV.”

(The doctor begrudgingly agreed with my defense and checked my ears. He found nothing and arranged a set of tests for me. I went to my appointment with my husband as I was a little shaken by the experience, and the first thing they asked us was if we had ever been sexually active with each other and how long I had suspected having HIV. The doctor decided to put me down for the test regardless of what I said. Once we explained the situation, the nurses apologised, but in the end, I agreed to take the test to learn more about it. My husband took it, too, to be a good sport. While stressful, it was a jovial experience. A week later, we both went to our GP to find out our results — mostly mine. We had the same doctor as I’d had the first time. It turns out I had a potassium deficiency which was causing my blood pressure to fluctuate while I was standing. Our HIV tests came back negative, but this didn’t stop the doctor belittling us and our “lifestyle” for a good ten minutes while going over the results. We complained about him and he was gone by my next visit. I later heard he was also judgemental with the minority population, and had submitted more requests for HIV testing than the rest of the practice combined.)
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Night Nurse, The Pain Is Getting Worse
Canada, Hospital, Ignoring & Inattentive, Lazy/Unhelpful, Nurses | Healthy | May 15, 2019
CONTENT WARNING: This story contains content of a medical nature. It is not intended as medical advice.

(I am a 22-year-old female and have always had problems with my feet, which are completely flat and also wide. I’ve been having intense pain in my left foot for a few years, and not one doctor or specialist I’ve gone to has had an explanation. Finally, I am told by a foot surgeon that I have a deformity in both feet that has caused arthritis and is the reason I am unable to walk properly. I am advised to have two metal screws implanted in my left foot to alleviate the pain and hopefully correct the structure of my foot. I go in for surgery and this happens when I stay overnight after the operation. “Nurse” is my day nurse and “Night Nurse” is the nurse assigned to give me the pain medication during the night.)

Nurse: “I’m going to take your vitals and let you get some rest. Your night nurse will come in to give you the pain medication soon. Can you swallow pills?”

(I tell her I can and expect to have no problems. Boy, am I wrong. Over the course of the night, I am pretty loopy from the anesthesia and all I want to do is sleep. A night nurse comes in to take my vitals again sometime in the night and says someone else will give me pain medication later. This repeats for some time with her and one other nurse until the morning, where I’ve recovered enough to realize I am in intense pain and nobody has given me the pain medication I need. Early the next morning, I am exhausted and crying from the pain when my parents come to see me.)

Mom: “What happened?! Why are you crying?!”

Me: *crying* “I’ve been up almost all night and nobody gave me pain medication!”

Mom & Dad: “WHAT?!”

(They track down a nurse and repeat what I’ve said.)

Nurse: “Um, a night nurse would have given you medication. You’re supposed to take it every three hours.”

Me: “Well, no one gave me anything. They woke me up to take my vitals several times and that was it!”

Nurse: “I’m going to look into this. Let me talk to the other nurses.”

(She leaves for a bit, then comes back with the night nurse who I recognize from last night. They both don’t look happy.)

Night Nurse: “We gave you medication last night. You just don’t remember it.”

Me: “You and some other nurse woke me up to take my vitals and said someone else will give me the medication. If I took the medication, I wouldn’t be in so much pain!”

Nurse: *hands me a pill bottle* “Just to make sure, these are what you’re supposed to take. Have you had these at all?”

Me: “No! I haven’t taken any pills!”

Night Nurse: “Well, did you tell someone that you needed it?”

(My parents and the other nurse just stare at her in disbelief.)

Mom: “Of course she needs it! You’re in charge of making sure she gets the medication on time!”

Night Nurse: *snotty* “She’s a big girl. She has to tell us if she needs it or not!”

(My nurse rushes the night nurse out before the situation escalates. My parents are furious and my nurse is also frustrated. I’m angry, too, of course, but more exhausted, and I just want to go home to recover in peace.)

Nurse: “I am so sorry. I had no idea this happened. There is no excuse for that. You are absolutely right: the night staff is responsible to get you that medication and they should have been keeping an eye on you.”

Me: “Can I just go home? I really don’t want to be here anymore…”

Nurse: “Unfortunately, now that I know you haven’t had any medication, I have to keep you here to catch up on the doses. I can’t send you home until I get this in your system and make sure you’re okay.”

(I was more upset by this, but I knew she had to do her job and didn’t say anything else. Over the next few hours, I was finally given the pain medication and I basically slept all day until she told me I could go home in the evening. Thanks to the night nurse’s negligence, I had to keep taking the medication for an extra few days until the pain got under control. We filed an official complaint against the nurse, but nothing has happened so far.)
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Coughing Up A Better Diagnosis
Colorado, Denver, Doctor/Physician, Jerk, Medical Office, USA | Healthy | May 14, 2019
(I have a history of coughing up blood for no particular reason. Despite a lack of a diagnosis explaining why it happens, it has happened three times. Two out of the three times, it was copious amounts. The first time, it happened when I was 16 and within a few hours, I had coughed up several cups before I was able to get to a hospital. A vein in my right lung had burst! The docs never figured out why it happened, but it happened again when I was 18. Fortunately, it was only a few mouthfuls – it ended up just being a busted capillary. Then, it happens again when I am 22. I have dealt with multiple nurses and doctors in the ER down the street telling me I am probably just exaggerating, which is incredibly infuriating. To prove that I am telling the truth, I begin to collect the blood by spitting it into a container and keeping the container in the fridge. It’s disgusting. Between Wednesday afternoon and Friday morning, I have coughed up and collected almost two cups of blood. I have a bronchoscopy at a different hospital go bad – a negative reaction to the light anesthesia they give me – so they send me back to the ER to be admitted. It is then that I deal with the most stuck up doctor in my life. I have no makeup on — obviously, who has time to worry about that when one’s life is possibly on the line? — and in the past that’s led people to mistake me for a high schooler more than once. It seems to fool this doctor, too, unfortunately. He approaches me with a haughty, unbelieving demeanor, and treats me like some sort of hysterical, loony teen. I start arguing with him about my honesty in the situation, and it begins to escalate to a frustrated yelling match. While I regret resorting to yelling at a doctor, I don’t regret how this ends. Not one bit. I finally reach a breaking point, yank my purse from my mother’s arms, shove the container of blood at the doctor, and scream.)

Me: “THIS IS WHAT I’VE BEEN COUGHING UP!”

(The doctor’s face goes completely white as he gapes at me, stares at the container, looks back at me, and takes it to run out of the room. Another doctor comes in right then, and the first doc grabs his arm to drag him out with him. They close the door behind them, but there is a huge window in the door, so I can see both of them holding up the container, arguing, and acting generally panicked. Join the club, dudes. When Doctor Jerkface comes back in, he has a huge change in attitude; he’s now sweet, attentive, and eager to help.)

Doctor: “All right, honey, don’t you worry. We’re going to admit you to the ICU right away. We’re going to take care of you and figure out why this is happening.”

(I let myself become the smug jerk in the room and give him a victorious smirk.)

Me: “You’re d*** right, you’re going to.”
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