Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Eat your Wheaties

It was nice to be back at work for a while. We'll be in the hospital for chemo round #2 for several days now. Looking back on the week spent in my "old life", it was an interesting one. Two patients stick out in my memory.

The first, a mid-60s female who doesn't complain, presented with 5 days of "feeling sick", lying in bed, and having fevers without localizing symptoms.

The second, a late 50s female who can't open her mouth without whining whining whining, had 5 days of "feeling sick", lying in bed, and having low-grade fevers without localizing symptoms.

The first had a pulse of 120, a temp of 100.4, and a BP of 170/100.

The second had a pulse of 76, a temp of 98, and a BP of 140/90.

I sent them both for bloodwork and a chest Xray after a negative physical exam.

The first was admitted to the hospital for 5 days for urosepsis and renal failure (and is doing great back at home now).

The second had stone cold normal labs and called begging for an antibiotic to help with her fatigue.

Ask me if I was surprised.


Anonymous said...

Dr. Smak, Will be thinking of you during round 2 of chemo.

One can always pick the whiner out of the crowd.....although every once in while, one gets thrown a curve ball, and the whiner is actually sick. Who would of thunk it.


Dr. Smak said...


There lies the danger of the whiner.
But it wasn't to be this time.

Femail doc said...

Geez, the patients are the same in your part of the country as here in mountain west.

I have a new nurse practitioner in my office with that fresh, new perspective of 'ain't it all grand?' She fielded a phone call from one of our chief whiners, wondered then if she did the right thing to ask her in. I told her to be careful what she wished for but perhaps it was better she took the call than I as this woman raises immediate skepticism when I even just hear her name.

Turns out P at the very least was OD'd on narcotics, she could hardly talk or stay awake. Had a bit of a droop to her mouth too--Bell's Palsy? stroke? Thank heavens for fresh, new perspectives.

Anonymous said...

As my old professor used to say, "even a squirrel can fall out of a tree...."