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This is a question Doctors, Nurses, Dentists and Hospitals

Tingtwatter asks: Ever been on the receiving end of some quality health care? Tell us about it

(, Thu 11 Mar 2010, 11:49)
Pages: Latest, 14, 13, 12, 11, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, ... 1

This question is now closed.

Mustn't grumble
Our GP is a star. He knows what he's doing, doesn't bullshit, doesn't talk down to any of us and, most important of all, isn't afraid to pick up the phone. This is the reason we found out in time that my daughter's swollen neck wasn't just a teenager thing, but Hodgkin's lymphoma. After a year of chemo and transfusions, she went into remission. She still has after-effects, mainly from the chemo, but she was thirteen then and she's twenty seven now. Result!

On another occasion I didn't feel well and went to him. He took my blood pressure and, well, would you have believed that a Bangladeshi could turn white? He certainly did. 210/110, as I remember; I'll keep taking the tablets . .

Then there was the nurse at the old Grimsby General who, when removing a dressing, stabbed me with a scalpel. Takes all sorts, I suppose.
(, Sun 14 Mar 2010, 18:19, Reply)
Well
Since Im in the States, and not involved with the NHS, I can say that my health care coverage has been very good. Also helps when your Primary Care Doctor has the same last name, and the hosiptal he's affiliated with is the one you go to for anything serious. So I've never had a complaint, even in the ones where family wasnt involved - quality and service have been excellent.
(, Sun 14 Mar 2010, 17:23, 3 replies)
i know, i know, you've all heard it before...
but, coincidentally, just had a friend tell us about the super funny joke her doctor told as he was stitching her up after she ripped open from stem to stern during the birth of her son.

Asked the father of her child, "do you want me to put a couple of extra stitches in?"

actually happened and not as hilarious to a new mother as one might believe.
(, Sun 14 Mar 2010, 17:23, Reply)
I think that the NHS should be closed down.
I have never been ill, and do not plan to be. It is therefore surplus to my requirements.
(, Sun 14 Mar 2010, 15:44, Reply)
My NHS stories
all involve someone failing to get medical treatment and dying.

Mind you I am American.
(, Sun 14 Mar 2010, 15:25, 1 reply)
Dr Sam
My lovely wife was experiencing abdominal pains, irregular periods and a number of other, not so nice symptoms. The GP was no help whatsover, didn't refer her when required and pretty much didn't know thier arse from their elbow.

After 2 years of Scans, Going to hospital for all types of tests and physical examinations it is found that she has got quite severe endometriosis. At this point things start getting a bit rosier.. or so i thought. because fo the severity she is asked by the most fantastic doctor, Dr Sam, if she wants to try a different form of treatment.

It was a 50/50 chance whether the treatment was done or whether it was a placebo. The treatment was the same drugs and dosage used while going through chemotherapy. After a couple of invasive operations and six months of treatment it is all clear on the scans. another 6 months after this she falls pregnant.

I'm over the moon, she's over the moon. The doctor that looked after us throughout the treatment, who is now a personal friend was ecstatic. He did at this point take me aside and said the possibility of going full term, this close after the treatment was not great. 3 1/2 months down the line, after seeing the heartbeat and shape my wife does miscarry.

I knew it might have been on the cards but she was distraught. I didn't want to show too much emotion and be the strong one, the shoulder to cry on. As she was going through the process to abort, Dr Sam spoke to me outside. i couldn't hold it in any longer. He gave me the biggest bearhug until i'd finished. By the way i had been made redundant just over an hour before getting to the hospital to find out the news.

I know the GP wasn't the best but the problem was sorted in the end. I know the outcome of being pregnant wasn't what anyone wanted, but we've both made a lifelong friend in Dr Sam and his family, who helped us all the way through, and keeps in regular contact. Usually phoning up or going for coffee and asking when were trying again.

I couldn't ask for anything more from the NHS. There is sometimes a requirement to push for the right referals and treatment, but when you do get them, you get the best state healthcare in the world.
(, Sun 14 Mar 2010, 14:25, Reply)
Labour isn't working
I had a particularly traumatic labour. I was sky high on every drug going. Blood everywhere, baby in distress, they needed to get her out quick.

Top consultant called to the room.

I know she was there to help save the life of my (by now not breathing) baby but at the time all I could scream was "Get your fucking hands out my fucking cunt you fucking psycho bitch"

In hindsight, she was brilliant.

Me? Not so much.
(, Sun 14 Mar 2010, 13:01, Reply)
Operation + booze = result!
Few years back I won a night out in one of those fire engine limo thingies. Me and the girlies had a top night out. Much alcohol was quaffed and I finally crawled into bed - after a few chunders on the way home - at about 3am.

Normally, this wouldn't have been a problem but i had to be in hopsital at 7am for an op requiring general anaesthetic. When I turned up, the nurses and my surgeon laughed when i told them i was mightily hungover and, in all probability, still pissed.

They did the op anyway.

I was first on the list that day so was back on the ward by 10am. However, the combination of the previous night's shenanigans and the anaesthetic meant I didn't come round till 4pm (and that was only because I was being "helped" out of oblivion by some kindly slapping from the nurses)

As i came round i realised the rest of the day's patients had gone home and there was a different set of nurses stood round my bed looking very worried that something was seriously wrong with me. (The early shift had clocked off and not mentioned I was sleeping off more than the anesthetic.)
That was when i saw a doctor coming towards me with a large needle of something.

I sat up, shouted "leave me - i'm pissed", threw up and went back to sleep.

They woke me up quite forcefully and sent me home.

To those nurses at QMC in Nottingham - i'm sorry for any worry and the vomit.
To the early shift nurses - you might have bloody told them!
(, Sun 14 Mar 2010, 12:51, 5 replies)
Stomach Ulcers

A strange, but true, tale of stomach ulcers. I happen to be somewhat of an expert on the bastards as I suffered from one from the mid-70's to the arse-end of the 80's.

When I was first diagnosed, treatment was a bit crap. Magnesium Trisilicate if I remember correctly. White chalky liquid that tasted faintly of peppermint. I used to buy it by the litre and carry it with me everywhere. Bloody vile stuff.

In those days, stomach ulcers were thought to be caused by a variety of factors including, but not limited to:

Stress
Smoking
Alcohol
Bad diet
Genetic predispostion.
Not enough exercise.
Too much exercise.

You get the picture. The reality was the medical profession didn't have a bastard clue what caused them. They also didn't have a clue how to fix them. By the time they decided that surgery was the best option for me (after a bad bleed. Shitting black, partially-digested blood is not the best way to greet the day as I found out one morning), the operation of choice was a partial vagotomy. That meant cutting part of the vagus nerve that was supposed to control how much acid your stomach produced. As the vagus nerve also regulates things like heartbeat it was a little chancy.

The chance of success was around 30%. On odd figure because it was exactly the same figure for any surgical procedure! In other words, any invasive surgical procedure had a 30% chance of curing stomach ulcers - but they didn't know that at the time. So they went and ahead and hacked and cut and left me with a scar from bellybutton to sternum and it achieved the square-root of fuck all. Still had the ulcer, still had the pain and now had a massive scar for my troubles.

Around this time the first effective antacid drug was developed, Tagamet, and I was put on this for the forseeable. That was later changed to a more effective one, Zantac, and I could live a pretty much normal life as long as took the drugs.

Then I read something on the new-fangled internet in 1989. A couple of Austrlian doctors had proven that stomach ulcers were caused by a bacteria, Helicobacter pylori, and the bacteria could be wiped out by a course of 2 types antibiotics along with Zantac (a proton-pump inhibitor). This killed the bacteria and hence cured the ulcer.

I persuaded my GP to give this a go (backed up with printouts of the relevant articles ) and became one of the first people in the UK to be cured by this revolutionary treatment.

On looking back at this it seems that the medical profession were behaving exactly like witch doctors when performing surgery for stomach ulcers. They knew that it cured a proportion of the patients, they just couldn't predict which ones it would cure, which ones it would harm and who would be left unchanged. What they didn't realise was the ones who got cured weren't cured by the surgery - they were cured by the antibiotics that every patient gets when they go under the knife. Later studies also showed that people who developed post-op infections were more likely to be cured - because they got more and different types of antibiotics. Hindsight is a beautiful thing.

Last note. The two doctors who developed this treatment and were almost laughed out of the profession, Dr Barry J. Marshall and Dr J. Robin Warren, were awarded the Noble Prize for medicine in 2005. It's worth reading their story.

Cheers
(, Sun 14 Mar 2010, 11:56, 13 replies)
Bob's your uncle
My uncle Bob is 79 years old. His wife of over 50 years died about 7 years ago and he's still devastated. He's also been diagnosed with bladder cancer and has to have much treatment involving shoving things up his japs eye.

About a year ago - after a treatment - he received a call from the hospital explaining that they had made a slight mistake and had not sterilized the equipment properly after treating someone with HIV, so could he please come for a test?

Luckily he came back negative, but I can't help being stunned by the numb cnuts. 'We're trying our best to cure you but we might have given you AIDS, septuagenarian'.

The Daily Hate Mail would have a fucking field day....
(, Sun 14 Mar 2010, 10:46, 1 reply)
George
Mad Tim hadn't been taking his medication and had tried to kill his parents or something so was staying in the psychiatric ward for a spell while they pumped him full of "nice thoughts" drugs. I went to visit him.

The TV room is where the mentals spent most of the day. I walked in through the door of said room and heard a voice call out "Hello mate. How are you? Haven't seen you in ages.". I looked round at the source of these words, they came from a man about the same age as me who looked familiar. I thought for a moment then it dawned on me, his name was George and he had been at the same Junior school as me. It must have been fifteen years since I'd seen him yet he'd recognised me instantly. I went over and had a quick chat with him, "How are you keeping?", "How long have you been in here?". Not sure what to say really, mentioned school, not much else to talk about and he wasn't very chatty so I wished him well and made my way over to the other side of the room to talk to Mad Tim.

While I was chatting with Mad Tim someone else entered the room and I heard a voice: "Hello mate. How are you? Haven't seen you in ages.". It came from George. Then another person entered the room and George said the same thing again. And again. And again. Each time someone entered the room.

He must know an awful lot of people.
(, Sun 14 Mar 2010, 10:40, 1 reply)
Appendicitis??
Just over a year ago I was hospitalised with extreme pain in my abdomen. It was in the right place for my appendix so I got put on the surgery list and fed liquid morphine for the pain. Note to junkies: It's shit. Doesn't take the edge off the pain, let alone get you high. Tastes like arse, too....
Anyway, three days nil by mouth and I'm still in agony. I go for my appendectomy only for the sawbones to find two massive cysts on both ovaries, one of which has burst, hence the pain. Turns out I've got endometriosis which was bleeding every month into my ovaries and filling them up... Nice eh??
I still have my ovaries, thankfully. I also have, in addition to the appendix scar, a 12" cut from pubis to sternum which they used to clean out the mess that was my reproductive organs. On the plus side, I've now got a coil fitted that means I don't have periods any more, so the diner is open 24/7, 365 a year. No periods, no endometriosis.
The scar is fucking ugly though and would probably put you off.
Swings and roundabouts.
Oh and the anaesthetic left me convinced that the nursing staff were trying to kill me, so one night I pulled out all my canulas so I could escape. Took about two hours to find a suitable vein to get them put back in...
And they fed me chicken that made me projectile vom all over the ward.....
apart from that though, National Insurance done me proud.
(, Sun 14 Mar 2010, 9:55, 1 reply)
ouch
well I didn't actually seek medical help although I could have done with it as I was worried about the embarrassment factor, but one time I got burnt on my intimate parts with a chili. Boyf had cooked a top quality Thai stir fry but not washed his hands. The 'thanks for dinner' afterwards involved me screaming the house down and him thinking for a minute that he'd made me come like a train.
Apologies for length but it hurt for fucking ages. A shower didn't help at all.
I worked with his mate. The following day I came in to a Red Hot Chili Peppers CD on my desk. Cunt.
(, Sun 14 Mar 2010, 9:45, 2 replies)
Quality healthcare by one of my ex-colleagues....
Quick and easy.

Was a student nurse back in 1999. Working with a particularly sexy ex-navy girly, also a student.

Was just taking a blokes blood pressure and having a little chat when all of a sudden his ECG monitor goes off the fucking scale, rate over 180, narrow complex...it's SVT.

He's staring off behind me and I glance round to see what could've caused it. There is our lush navy girlie, crouched down, legs akimbo flashing tight black thong and hold-ups.

I managed to save the day and sort him out though...after I had had a wank, of course
(, Sun 14 Mar 2010, 9:08, Reply)
but it really hurt
I was sent down to our local A&E with a twisted knee. I'd tripped down two steps and the momentum of my fat belly twisted my knee (I'm newly fat and it is playing havoc with balance).
I was seen very promptly ahead of a young man who looked very, very pale. His hand had been savaged by his dog as he tried, in vain, to stop it killing his mother's dog. And also before a toddler who had possibly swallowed a toy as the mother couldn't find it in the bath.
When I asked why I was considered a priority I was told that the young man was always in for some reason or another, more then once they had to remove fish hooks from his fingers and he was used to a bit of pain. And the mother probably needed to calm down and tidy up properly.
Turned out there was nothing wrong with my knee that couldn't be cured with some rest, tea and lots of cake (self prescribed)
(, Sun 14 Mar 2010, 8:45, Reply)
diddums
A note to Dr Howard; "Aw diddums" is an inappropriate response to an adult complaining of any kind of illness, let alone one as debilitating as a scratchy cough, which could very well have been caused by throat cancer for all you know. And yes, the pharmacist found your prescription of a bottle of tixylix very amusing. I didn't know it was an over-the-counter remedy for babies.
Although it did work actually so thanks.
(, Sun 14 Mar 2010, 8:09, 3 replies)
Good and Bad
My few personal experiences are when I was young. I managed to take a particularly bad tumble onto a girder aged about six and break my jaw. It took two weeks for the docs to figure it out and x-ray it. I still have a badass lump where it knit wrong, but well enough the ortho decided to just leave it rather than re-break it to fix it. I now have a very lopsided smile (which is apparently adorable), and a possibility of braces soon to set my teeth properly.

Another time which was much better was getting my astigmatism sorted in primary which went really well :)

But my favourite example is my dad. He's a paranoid schizophrenic with co-morbid depression, and despite him fucking up a lot, his support team and psychiatrists have pretty much always been there for him, whether in the hospital or at his home, or setting up community stuff for him, and getting him placements in trials (clozapine ftw) and generally helping out as much as they possibly can to keep him as healthy and active as he can handle.
They're a bunch of saints who deserve nothing but praise, and I've got nothing but good to say about the services here. Sometimes they're spread a little thin, but damn they make up for it. They've helped with family stuff too, getting mum and later me into a carer program so we can take time off, and talk to people in similar situations. They're the reason I got into psychology and why I'm on the uni course I am, so I guess they've helped me out a lot there as well.

All in all, go NHS! While they're not always as perfect, they're as good as they possibly can be with the sometimes limited resources they have :)
(, Sun 14 Mar 2010, 4:01, Reply)
When in hospital once
I was offered fish and chips for din dins, and thinking it seemed like the most innocuous option I went along with it. What I got was a strange culinary feat that is achieved only by someone like Heston Blumenthal, or Ferran Adria undergoing years of research or (in this case) a complete retard, wherein the chips tasted like fried cod, and the fish tasted like McCain's oven chips.
The only other explanation I can think of is that I was so dosed up on morphine my saline drip started playing havoc with my taste buds.
(, Sun 14 Mar 2010, 3:36, Reply)
I used to love hospitals as a kid
I'd normally stay in for a few days following major surgery and all would be well. Nurses taught me biology and suchlike, and I am going to become a nurse soon.

In December just gone, I was referred for foot surgery. I was extra nervous as it was to be done under epidural and not general anaesthetic, the latter I am a lot more comfortable with.

Mercifully, I was one of the first to go in for morning surgery.

10am: Anaesthetist comes round, calls me the wrong name and starts explaining knee surgery. After a quick nervous laugh, the right notes come along.

10.15: I'm in the anaesthetic room now, leaning towards my feet on the side of my bed. The local anaesthetic needle hurt like a bitch (as my skin was stretched) and the two sudden pangs of pins and needles moving in waves down my leg makes me panic. All is OK though, and this is normal. As I start going numb, I'm wheeled into theatre.

10.45: I'm halfway through my surgery now, iPod totally abandoned as my anaesthetist told me she was in the same year as Adam and Suman from the amateur transplants. She knows not of their music, but we have a good laugh nonetheless.

11.10: A sudden fucking agony in my foot as the epidural wears off. They're really apologetic and administer a block almost immediately. They let me watch as my foot is sewn back up and temporarily plastered. That was fun :)

11.30: I'm now in recovery and being told that I will not get another drink until I'm on the ward. Itching like fuck from the epidural and still traumatised after the theatre incident, I'm less than happy. I haven't eaten since the night before and not drank since 6am, so I'm pretty lame. The nurses are barely saying anything to me apart from to shove my oxygen mask back on.

12.30: I'm now in the ward, having had a drink of water, but no food. They said I needed to recover from my general anaesthetic before I could eat. They didn't believe me until I was discharged that I'd had a spinal! I texted my other half to get him to bring food for me, nearly crying now.

1pm: My drip is taken off, but my cannula is still in. The cannula hurts like fuck, and was far too big for my vein. I got myself dressed as I was in a less than modest state. I was told that it wasn't coming out until I had eaten and pissed.

2pm: I'm now being told that I can go home. A bit suspicious, as they were looking for beds a few minutes before. I protest like fuck as there is no way I can walk on crutches, but I'm helped to a wheelchair and moved over to the waiting area.

3pm: Massive traffic problems due to football means my other half is going to be later. I got my cannula taken out despite me explaining I had neither pissed nor eaten. The nurse shrugged it off.

3.30: All attempts to get the nurses' attention fails and I'm desperate for a piss. There is no way that I'm going to walk on my own, so I wait, still ignored.

4pm: Other half tells me he's nearly there, and I am so desperate for a piss that I try to go myself, thinking I must be fine. No such luck, I fall clean over. Nurses do absolutely nothing, and another patient helps me up.

4.30pm: The other half comes and I'm given medication to take home. I'm crying at this point and still have numb arse cheeks, which makes it really hard to walk. They have the cheek to tell me 'IF you have Tramadol, it might help'*.

My other half had to practically carry me to the car. I have sworn that next time, I'm getting a block anaesthetic from the knee down for the next one.

Easily the most traumatic experience of my life. Sorry for length.

*Actually, my other half DID have Tramadol, and that mixed with Ibuprofen and Codeine didn't help. The other half gave me NOS in an attempt to help. NOTHING helped for an hour. It felt like they were still sawing through the bone!
(, Sun 14 Mar 2010, 2:47, 1 reply)
Why doctors work long hours . . .
This needed a separate post to explain why some of us work more hours than is safe. The causes are multifactorial, but this is a very brief summary:

Once you leave Uni with a shiny MB,BS you are not actually qualified to do anything other than work in a public hospital under supervision. This came about in my second year if training (1995), with the powers-that-be deciding to limit provider numbers only to those with a specialty or in training for one. Provider numbers are what one uses to charge Medicare for services to patients - and, as the Government wanted to cut costs at the time, stopping doctors from charging the public purse until they had specialty training was a way to do it. Nothing to do with quality of training - all for cutting costs.

Specialty colleges restrict their numbers admitted for training each year for a number of reasons: a big one is to maintain standards. The year I got into surgery, 8 people from my state were admitted for training. The Government again feels this isn't enough, so they have a novel way to increase the numbers: *make* the colleges admit more people; the new system also allows trainees who have never touched a scalpel to start training to be surgeons. Will this solve the problem? I have junior trainees whose ego is far, far bigger than their surgical ability - they were admitted just-out-of internship, and they believe they are the "chosen ones," as opposed to the likes of us (work for 3-4 years to earn a place). I weep for the future if this specialty if these little kiddies get to finishing. And will it make their hours better? No - see below.

Finally, three things further contribute to my shitty hours:
1. Convention - my bosses had crappier hours than me ('tis true - 1 in 1 on-call, being given *one* day off for your own wedding!) and expect the next generation will do the same. Since these guys choose who gets through, best to keep them happy.
2. Ego - when there are four of you on a unit, and you've been on-call all night, you don't really feel like working the next day. Your colleagues may ask if you need someone to cover the list - invariably you will say no (they're not really offering, they're wanting to see if you're weak enough to go home). Terrible, but there it is.
Ditto with hospital admin. They will only pay certain hours or work, and unnecessary overtime is frowned upon. Easy solution for the guys who wants to make a good impression on his boss - don't document your hours properly, clock off on-time and hang about to finish the work.
3. Another government initiative, called National Medical Registration. Most people don't realise there is no legal requirement to have a FRACS to operate (Degree from the College of Surgeons). Anyone can do it - and there are some people not trained as surgeons, or even doctors who operate in this country.

Hot on the heels of this, and sensing a way to save a buck, our wise Government has decided to have one body to administer all health professionals (run by the Government - at the moment each area of health is run by members of the profession - nurses govern nurses, doctors govern doctors, etc), with the ultimate aim being to substitute a health professional in an area if cost allows. In plain English, if having a physiotherapist in upper Whoop-Whoop is cheaper than the surgical trainee, there is a law that allows it to happen. Even more worrying, "fringe" allied health (Naturopathy and Chinese Medicine) are accredited by the same body. These guys are very keen for the system to go ahead, as it increases their credibility by association.
The draft of this law has already been passed in one state here, cloaked in secrecy, as the despots in charge knew it would cause an almighty shitstorm. The plan is to have it introduced under the public nose, as a "fait accompli" where we will all just get used to it.



That's a part explanation for why I don't go home on time . . . the last one for me is a personal responsibility to make sure my job is done before I leave, so as not to leave crappy jobs for the next guy.






Footnote: I personally don't believe in fringe medicine, and don't suggest it to any patient as a treatment. I like to see hard, scientific evidence a treatment works before I use it. Some people disagree with this; more power to you - the point above was not intented to piss people off - my opinion only.
(, Sun 14 Mar 2010, 2:19, 4 replies)
bugger it, i'll do them all at once
due to birth defects and unexpected(for a teenager) illnesses, i've been in and out of different hospitals since birth. i'll try to keep this as short as possible.

st. paul's eye hospital, liverpool
attended 3 times a week from the age of 6 months until 6 years. lovely, helpful staff, but completely unable to help me with a condition that no-one had ever seen.

moorfield's eye hospital, london.
thanks to the wonderful mr. collins visiting st. paul's and deciding he wanted to try something experimental to help me, i'm not blind. 15 visits and 5 operations between the ages of 6 and 17. he was on telly a while ago, the picture of thunderbird 2 that i drew for him when i was 8 could be clearly seen on the wall behind his desk.

fazakerly(aintree) hospital, liverpool.
unexpected kidney stones at the age of 13 went undiagnosed for 2 years, which led to some serious complications. i've had 5 operations so far and still need another. there is so much scar tissue now that i've been warned that this will be my last chance to fix things. mostly good treatment, but one or two nurses seriously need a kick up the fish mitten.

the royal liverpool hospital.
car crash. walked into casualty looking like an extra from dawn of the dead. was treated immediately as i had severed an artery in my forehead. caused the young doctor to blush bright red when he asked me how my head was and i replied "i've had no complaints so far". 2 black eyes and a harry potter-looking scar.

spire regency hospital, macclesfield.
weight management centre. the country really does need more of these. some of the other patients were having to travel outrageous distances to see a weight specialist. still attending, i've lost over 15 stones. yes, i was a very fat fucker. all staff have been excellent.

east ridings hospital, hull
gastric bypass, july 2008. this is where i was stuck next to the patient i have previously referred to as the prick. between him and a very cunty nurse, a comfortable and really rather pleasant hospital stay was marred.

fazakerly hospital, liverpool
about a year ago. suspected punctured lung. unable to breathe more than a ragged wheeze, terrified that i was going to die, pain in my back and chest like i'd been stabbed. was left in this condition, in casualty, for 6 hours. i asked the doctor i eventually saw if they'd been having a busy night. he replied that no, it'd been fairly quiet. he couldn't understand why i'd been left for so long. turns out the triage nurse had "misplaced" my forms and assumed i'd already been seen.

still got at least 3 operations to go, here's hoping, eh?

sorry for the length, i didn't realise it'd be so big!
(, Sun 14 Mar 2010, 1:43, Reply)
The unfortunate tale of the demise of my foreskin
When I was young, my penis seemed perfectly normal, and was looking forward to a long and happy life away from sharp objects. Alas, this was not to be.

I remember vividly the first time I realised that something was amiss. I was in the living room, probably aged 6 or so, and something didn't feel right. Being an innocent and somewhat uninhibited child, I took the little feller out to have a look, and suddenly felt the unstoppable need to go. Now pissing on the floor wouldn't been bad enough, but to my horror, a crimson jet of blood came spurting out. I still remember the warm feeling of it on my hands. Ugh.

Following an embarrassing explanation to my mum, I was trotted off to the doctor. I don't remember if I ever found out why the bleeding had occurred, but the long story cut short is that my foreskin was 'too tight'. I'd never been able to retract my foreskin, but being a child, and not having been exposed to other men's erect dongs, I wasn't aware that this should be the case. I was offered two choices by the doctor, the foreskin could either be 'stretched', or I could go the whole way and have it lopped off. Having become rather attached to my penis over my life so far, I opted for the first choice.

Now, this was in the 90s, and I was covered by health insurance that my dad got with his job (it was an American company, so that sort of thing wasn't so unusual), and so I was duly seen by Mr S, a willy consultant, and soon enough D-day arrived. I don't really remember much about before the operation, other than than the 'magic cream' that was applied to numb my hand for the anesthetic, and being put under.

When I came to, I was very drowsy, due to a combination of the anesthetic and painkillers. I needed a wee, and I remember having difficulty walking to the toilet due to the drug-induced daze. I was left by to do my business, but instead of sweet relief and a jet of urine, I was greeted by burning agony and a jet of blood. Imagine needing to pee more than anything, and trying to stop mid-stream. That's bad enough by itself. Now imagine having to choose between a bursting need to piss or having your cock on fire. It was one of the most upsetting and traumatising experiences of my life. It turned out that instead of just 'stretching' my foreskin, the surgeon had managed to tear something, and no one had thought to mention this to my mum so I could find out in a gentler way.

To top this all off, the operation made fuck-all difference.

Unfortunately for my todger, this wasn't his last brush with a man and a scalpel...

By the age of 9 it had become apparent that at some point I'd need to resolve the... tightness issue. It caused rather eratic variations in stream-direction whilst pissing, and often the divergence of my kidney-juice into two streams. Furthermore, I was old enough to understand that when I was older I could get infections that would be most unpleasant (although I didn't know that these would likely be due to festering jizz build-up and STIs), and so I bit the bullet and went to my GP again. The NHS these days don't like to do circumcisions unless it really is a last resort, and although I'd been mercifully free from blood-pissage since the fateful day of 'the stretch', the failure of this attempt led my GP to refer me for the chop.

This time, the operation was in an NHS hospital. I was nervous, and it was strange knowing that by that evening my willy would never be the same again. The wait for my 'turn' dragged on for what seemed like forever, and then the nurse came and told me it was almost time. Going for a wee was like the last meal of a condemned man. It was the last time I'd ever see my penis in one piece, and I felt genuinely upset as I said my last goodbye to my faithful companion.

Fortunately, this time everything went smoothly, and other than a week or so of the most horrendous itching ever, and the ring of barbed-wire-like stitches that encircled my newly exposed helmet.

And from that day on me and my todger lived happily ever after. (I may or may not think of a better way to end this story in the morning, it is late)
(, Sun 14 Mar 2010, 1:30, 1 reply)
Rectal cucumber
The foreign-object-up-bum stories here have reminded me of one I heard a while ago.

A guy presented in A&E with a whole cucumber disappeared up his arse. It was providing a little bit of quiet levity amongst the staff that night.

It was less quiet levity when apparently a rather naive young student nurse or somesuch commented, "The thing I don't understand is... how did he swallow it whole?"
(, Sun 14 Mar 2010, 1:04, Reply)
Having told my bad doctor story here already
I should probably tell a good one to even things out.

I have a friend who is a doctor, currently doing shifts in a hospital emergency room. He had a memorable NYE last year, though it was probably more memorable for his patient.

He attended a boilermaker in A&E. Apparently boilermakers don't wear rings on their fingers because of various occupational hazards, so for Christmas, Mrs Boilermaker had bought him a ring he could wear somewhere that wasn't likely to be troubled by the making of boilers.

Mrs Boilermaker had bought him a large, thick, titanium cock ring. Which he had been wearing for a few days, I think.

The problem with this was that neither Mr or Mrs Boilermaker had any idea what it is that cock rings actually do. They seemed to think it was just another place you could hang some jewellery. So when Mr Boilermaker got an erection after donning his ring, they were both very surprised to find that the erection wouldn't go down, and that the ring got somewhat stuck, wedged firmly into place at the base of his member. By the time he presented at the hospital with this predicament, he was in quite the state of distress.

So this is how my doctor friend saw in the stroke of midnight. With a diamond-tipped cutting blade thingy in his hand, cutting a big old ring off some guy's dick. Being titanium it wasn't easy to cut through. And not bendable either - he'd hoped he could make one cut and bend the ring open, but not possible. So two cuts had to be made - one on top and one on the underside. They took about 20 mins each. And the cutting was generating a great deal of friction and heat, so there was also the frequent dribbling on of water to try and keep things from getting too hot.

I think Mr Boilermaker is now planning on a jewellery free life.
(, Sun 14 Mar 2010, 0:57, Reply)
I bit my dentist's finger last week.
"Bite down on that," he said. So I did.
He started flapping around and shouting. (I must add here that he is Persian and reminds me of The Count from Sesame Street). So it seemed quite comedy and I assumed he was doing an old dentists joke on me, or something.
But no, I had his finger.
£200 he charged me, for a simple filling. Nearly twice what it should have been. I didn't complain because I think I drew blood.
(, Sat 13 Mar 2010, 23:44, 2 replies)
Starting my life again
Right.

As some of you will be aware, I suffered a massive brain haemorrhage (a rare type of stroke that kills 60% of sufferers) at the tender age of 14. It was the 28th July 1995, but it still feels like it was only last week.

I was a spotty, greasy fourteen year old, and had just finished year 10 at high school, a year before I took my dreaded GCSEs. I had been out on a bike ride with two friends in the morning, and had arranged to go swimming in the afternoon, which (luckily!), was canceled at the last minute.

I spent the afternoon alone playing on my MegaCD when, without any warning, I suddenly felt dizzy and very sick. I tried to stand up, but I completely lost my balance and fell backwards onto my bed. My vision had just become an erratic kaleidoscope of colours, unable focus on anything. My head pounded with an indescribable pain. I was able to get to my feet and stagger towards the bedroom door, and start making my way downstairs to the kitchen (I don't really know why I tried to do this, but the medicine cabinet was in there so I think it was an automatic response) I managed to get half way before my legs completely buckled and I fell the rest of the way, hitting my head and shoulders on the radiator in the hallway, but I didn't feel a thing. I managed to reach the kitchen on my hands and knees, and haul myself onto the bench where I just sat with my head in my hands, trying to comprehend what was happening. I fell off the bench a few seconds later as my balance completely deserted me and just lay crumpled on the floor, waiting to be found. I was drifting in and out of consciousness at this point; the last thing I remember was Dad frantically calling someone on the telephone before I lost passed out completely.

The time it took from me being an average 14 year old playing videogames in his room to losing consciousness on the kitchen floor, at a guess, was about four minutes.

The doctor rushed me and my Dad to a local hospital where they took CT scans of my brain and tried several responsiveness tests. I was returned to a ward to see if I would regain consciousness, but when it was confirmed that I had suffered a massive Brain Haemorrhage, I was taken then to the Walsgrave Hospital in Coventry where they performed an emergency Craniotomy where they cut a hole in my skull, clipped the bleeding blood vessels with metal clips, removed the blood that had flooded my brain and left me in an induced coma to see if I would recover. I was literally at death's door.

However I woke up several days after the operation in the Intenstive Care unit, unable to comprehend what had happened to me. I couldn't talk or form sentences correctly; the right hand side of my body was almost completely paralysed. The room I was in would rearrange itself every time I blinked. It was as if I was frozen in time while the world around me rushed by. I struggled to recognise visitors at my bedside, one minute recognising them as family but the next they were just voyeuristic strangers. I remember a mirror being thrust in front of me; but I didn't even recognise my reflection. My hair had been shaved off and I had an enormous scar running from behind my left ear towards the top of my head.

My mum tried to explain what had happened to me but I couldn't understand. I'd never even heard of a Brain Haemorrhage before, and had only heard of strokes when they happened to someone on TV.

After a few days in this confused state, I was transferred to my local hospital's children's ward, where I was able to receive visitors; this is where my recovery really picked up. My family and friends made me smile and laugh again just by talking to me. I received intensive physiotherapy to get my strength in my body back and occupational therapy where I had to perform household tasks like making a cup of tea and doing a jigsaw. I was given a wheelchair which I was only able to move slightly at first; but even this small achievement was a massive boost to regaining my independence. My right arm, hand and leg still refused to work most of the time, which was very frustrating as it meant I couldn't play with the Megadrive in the children's ward, my fingers refusing to press the buttons no matter how hard I willed them to.

I was finally allowed to go home a week later with a strict exercise regime and speech and language therapy sessions to regain my communication skills. I couldn't do much for myself anymore, and I had to rely on mum and dad for everything. I hated being so dependant on other people. I had one goal; to get back to school and be with my friends again. Thanks to the physiotherapy sessions, I had managed to regain the ability to stand and walk again which, to me, was the biggest achievement I had made. I was finally able to climb the stairs to my bedroom at home where I was finally able to get some privacy, away from the constant supervision. My speech had returned with the Speech and Language therapy, although I was still struggling to say the right words in the correct order and context. I think that being unable to express myself was the scariest and most frustrating aspect of the brain haemorrhage. It was like being imprisoned in my own mind, and as a hormone-addled teenager striving for independence; it was an excruciatingly difficult period of time.

Three weeks later, I was summoned back to the Walsgrave hospital for an angiogram, where it was revealed that I needed another operation to clip the bleed further, which was a massive blow to me as I was afraid it would undo all the hard work I'd done in the various therapy sessions I had attended. The operation wasn't as long as the first one, and I managed to regain consciousness again with most of my faculties intact. I was walking again after a couple of days of being moved from the ICU to a regular ward. Another angiogram revealed that I needed one more operation to finally clip the bleed, which was carried out a couple of weeks later. I was finally discharged from hospital in late September and allowed to recover at home. By this time, my mobility had returned and I was able to walk unassisted for increasingly longer distances.

I was finally allowed back to school in October 1995, with the strict condition that I had to be kept separate from the other students during busy times in the corridors, in case I was knocked over and banged my head. My treatment once I had returned was a mixture of compassion, indifference, fascination and disbelief. Most were kind to me and patient with my difficulties, but some people (mostly other students but a couple of teachers too) accused me of exaggerating my symptoms to "gain attention" or to get out of doing work which was really hurtful; although as apart from the big scar and speech problems, there appeared to be nothing wrong with me, outwardly at least.

I failed all of my practice GCSE exams spectacularly and was almost moved to the lower ability groups but I refused to leave; the brain haemorrhage giving me a resilience and stubbornness that I didn't possess before. I worked really hard over the remaining few months of the term before the actual GCSE exams in May 1996; where I managed to get my grades back up to pass levels which, considering the situation I was in less 12 months previously was a monumental achievement. I went on to do my BTEC and HND, pass my driving test and now live like everybody else, apart from epilepsy, aphasia and a few memory issues.

I've done several interviews about the stroke, for the Daily Telegraph and the Sun. I'm also a case study in an AS Level Biology Textbook in the Cardiovascular Disease section! Charming eh?

The NHS was absolutely wonderful in looking after me. From the quick diagnosis at the local hospital, to the long and complicated operations and tests, to the aftercare, physiotherapy to get me walking again, speech and language to help me communicate and Occupational Therapy to get me doing day to day tasks. Right down to the vicar in the hospital chapel who used to come and visit me, to the work experience girl who held my hand when I was scared to go into the CT Scanner, to the library staff who saved me audiotapes. A whole army of people dedicated to helping me rebuild my life from scratch. My treatment, including epilepsy medicine for the rest of my life, must have cost thousands.

I will always owe my life to the NHS.
(, Sat 13 Mar 2010, 23:30, 10 replies)
The Good The Bad and the Ugly
At the beginning of last year I lost 3 stone in a very short space of time through illness, I had the most awful stomach pains to the point of nearly passing out a couple of times. I was practically housebound for a while because I was terrified of being stuck in a situation where I couldn't get to a loo quick enough.

Anyway, after a few visits to the doctor she decided to refer me for a colonoscopy. I was sent 4 packets of something called Kleanprep which basically cleans you out the day before the colonoscopy. If anyone has ever had the joy of Kleanprep you will know what's coming. I was told to drink one packet an hour until all 4 packets had gone, and when I read the instructions and it said "one packet makes one litre" I was a bit shocked. So the night before the appointment came around. I was terrified of the procedure but knew it needed doing so I got on with making my special drink. It honestly tasted like sea water and was the most disgusting thing I have ever come across. I managed to down the first litre fairly swiftly and then I just sat and waited.. and waited and then I got the first rumblings so off I went to the loo.

This went on for the whole night and by the time I was drinking the 4th litre just before midnight I was so sick of the stuff I burst into tears, Mr [email protected] brought me a lovely glass of lovely fresh tap water with ice to drink and I have never been more grateful for "council pop" (as we used to call it) in all my life. Eventually there was nothing left and I managed to get my head down for a few hours. Luckily my appointment was at 7.30am at the NHS treatment centre rather than the hospital, I got up had a nice cleansing bath and went on my way. I arrived in one of the nicest buldings I've been for ages, I was taken to a cubicle where a lovely nurse met me and we had a nice long chat about the weather, kids, grandkids etc whilst she filled in my forms and took my vitals. Then the consultant arrived and he came and sat with me for 10 minutes explaining absolutely everything to me about how it might feel, what will happen after etc and was absolutely one of the most calming nicest people I have ever met.

When I was wheeled into the room for the procedure I was still very nervous but knew I couldn't back down now. Just as they were about to dose me up with some stuff called Versed that makes you all woozy I hear the door open and a voice said "Ohhh I knew it was you Mrs [email protected] I saw your name on the patient list and I had to come and say hello" I turned around only to see my older sisters best friend who used to babysit me when I was little. At first I was incredibly embarrassed but then I remembered she probably used to change my nappies when I was a baby so I brushed it aside and waited to be "woozyfied" while she went off do some nursey stuff that nurses do. It was brilliant stuff, I can remember the bit where they blew some air up my bum to inflate my bowel, that hurt a bit but other than that it was fine! Afterwards I was given tea and toast, all the lovely nurses kept poking their heads around the curtain and asking how I was and the consultant came and gave me the good news that everything was clear! Hurrah. I went home feeling tired and I was a bit farty for a day or two but other than that I didn't know what I was so scared of.


So when I went back to visit my gastro consultant and she told me I would need an endoscopy to check for Coeliac disease I thought it would be a breeze. I fasted for 12 hours and went off to the big hospital because the lovely treatment centre was fully booked for ages (I now know why) I arrived on a dank miserable looking ward and was told to "sit in here till it's your turn" then a woman came and took my vitals and didn't even look at me let alone speak to me. My name was then called and my little mum gave me a hug and told me she'd be waiting there for me.

I strutted off to the room with all the confidence in the world. The nurse said "Lie there" and pointed to a bed she gave me the lovely medicine and shoved this big blue plastic thing in my mouth and asked me "Is that comfortable" I shook my head as something didn't feel quite right but she just came straight at me with the endoscope and down it went. I began to panic, and I mean really panic as the blue plastic guard had come lose and it felt like it was scratching the back of my throat. I tried to put my hands up to ask them to stop for a second but they thought I was going to pull the camera out so they pinned me down to the bed. Eventually it was over and I was wheeled into a side ward to come around and I began to sob like baby.
I cried and cried so loudly because I was scared and not one nurse came to see if I was ok. The lady in the next recovery bed asked if I was ok (I'd struck up some banter with her in the waiting room) and the nurse told her to ignore me as I was having "a moment". Eventually I was told to get up and go get a drink and something to eat. I was still very woozy but I was made to walk to what smelled like an old smoking room where an out of date sandwich and a cup of tea were chucked my way and a nurse just said in broken english "you eat then home ok" but at least she actually gave me a friendly smile and rubbed my arm to reassure me. I took one drink of the tea and burst into tears again and asked for my mum (so what I don't care if I am 31 I wanted my mum) she came in and I sat for ages crying on her shoulder and I told her that my throat was really really sore and when I was discharged I was told that was normal. A few hours after being at my mum and dads (I went there so I could be pandered to by my mum a bit more) the pain was really unbearable so I got a torch and had a look at my throat and there was a huge graze down the back of it that looked like it had bled quite a bit. After a few days it did get better but I do have a little scar. The biggest scar though is the emotional one.

The two experiences could not have been further apart, I can describe every feature of the NHS treatment centre, I can remember the face of the consultant in great detail but I remember nothing of the faces of the people of the big hospital just the horrible waiting room and ex smoking room.

Anyway, it turns out I had gastritis and I have quite a nasty case of IBS which is now diet controlled and life it much more awesome.

It's my longest post yet! (oh and the ugly bit in the subject line refers to me :D )
(, Sat 13 Mar 2010, 22:27, Reply)
Doctors, Nurses, Dentists and Hospitals
My first experience with the medical profession began with a trip to the dentist for pain in my mouth. I got an appointment with Doc. Boska, aka the butcher. I was told I had an impacted wisdom tooth and an infected molar. He would take care of the problem right away. He injected me with numbing medicine and then promptly pulled both of them out in less then a minute. He put a cotton ball in the hole and sent me on my way. I went to another doctor at the emergency room when the bleeding did not stop and the pain continued. The butcher it seems in his haste also broke my jaw and left a part of the root in the gums. The infection was cured after several rounds of medication. The jaw took a little longer to heal. I was happy when I heard that a year later he was relieved of his license to practice.

The next experience was for a work related injury where I was sent to a local clinic. I was diagnosed with a pulled groin muscle and every week had a lovely women rub my groin muscle with some ultra sonic device to ease the pain. Six weeks later I was cured. I still had pain and I went to see my doctor and told him of the problem and he had me drop my pants and within two seconds diagnosed a hernia. I told work of my doctor's opinion and was referred back to the clinic. I had the same person who told me of my pulled muscle they let me know that it must of happened because I overworked myself. The surgery was very successful with no problems.
I have always hated hospitals but I have found that the majority of the people working there are quite nice and willing to help.
(, Sat 13 Mar 2010, 21:47, Reply)
Had the snip
at age 25, cos already had 3 kids and didn't want to burden society anymore, also couldnt afford them.
Anyway on the table, doc says "do you want to watch?"
"no thanks"
All of a sudden "Oops!"
"What do you mean Oops?"
"The thread has broken, I've got to go in and find it. You may feel some pressure."
Felt like he'd climbed in my ballsack and was attempting to tunnel his way out of my arse."
Ended up with infction after infection for 6 months.
Those were the days before sueing people.
Just kept takng the pills.
(, Sat 13 Mar 2010, 21:03, 5 replies)

This question is now closed.

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