Things Not to Do:
- Never wear sunglasses in the department (= tinted speculopathy)
- Bacterial meningitis and subarachnoid haemorrhages excused.
- Never wear a soft neck collar and use a crutch. (+ tinted speculopathy = the Trifecta!)
- Never bring a soft toy with you unless you’re less than 6 years old.
- Never bring your mother with you if you’re male and over 18.
- Never let a relative stroke your head. (excused if you’re intubated)
- Never let a relative answer the doctors questions for you (again, excused if you’re intubated)
- Never provide a pain score response ‘outwith’ the requested limits (e.g. 11/10 pain)
- Never describe diarrhoea as explosive or vomiting as violent.
- Never claim to have had ‘double pneumonia’.
- Never claim to have just had ‘a couple’ of drinks.
- Never make out in the waiting room, or have your partner lie on the ED trolley with you (especially if you’re >50 years old.)
- Never bring your own word processed medical history with you.
- Never close your eyes when a doctor examines your abdomen.
- Never take an overdose in front of another human being – it’s just possible they might call an ambulance and your cunning suicide plan will be undone
Things Not to Say:
- ‘I have a really high pain threshold.’
- ‘I fell over in the shower.’
- ‘I was painting in the nude.’
- ‘I’m allergic to everything but Pethidine.’
- ‘I have Fibromyalgia / Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.’
- ‘I know my body.’
- ‘I have a pain in my heart.’
- ‘My Methadone/Diazepam/Oxycodone was stolen/lost/eaten by the dog.’
- ‘My Chiropracter/Pharmacist/GP receptionist/Healthdirect said I should come here.’
- ‘I was just standing there minding my own business…’
- “I need a sick note … preferably retrospective”
- I fell asleep at a party and when I woke up…
This list will continue to grow, feel free to contribute your own!