Open mouth, insert foot

16 09 2011

It’s been a whole 21 hours and I’m already planning to change the title of the blog.  I was going to do this anyway at some point, but it turns out I hate it more than I thought.  Oops.  Eventually something catchy and comical will pop into my head, but I’m not going to force it.  The appearance will probably also change; just think of this whole blog experiment as a work in progress.

Today, I was considering writing a post about my experience in this first week of family med, but then I remembered a text I received yesterday from a friend who just went through a breakup and wanted to hear a funny story about one of my patients to cheer her up.  For the 6 weeks prior to this one, I had amusing anecdotes out the wazoo; unfortunately, entertaining stories about nutty bonkers people are much more difficult to come by in family medicine than in inpatient psychiatry.  In lieu of a story, I’ll post a funny YouTube video.  That sort of counts as communication, right?

If you know me, you’ve probably seen this video before.  I love it primarily because psychiatry and ortho are the two groups of docs that I most often make fun of, for obvious reasons, and I promise I’m not alone in this mockery.  This is why I chose to do my psych clerkship first, to get my “transition” grade in a specialty that I could have given a hoot about before really refining my clinical skills in a higher-interest clerkship.  As it turns out, I absolutely loved inpatient psych and this is where the title of the post comes in.  It is for this reason alone that I have resolved to wait at least another week before passing judgment on family medicine.  Either way, the video is still entertaining:

Okay, I can tell one quick patient story from my days in the psych unit.

One of the more recent patients, Mr. R, wasn’t actually my patient, but he was a fun one.  And when I say fun, I mean threatening to the point that the male resident felt unsafe speaking with him most of the time.  He was… well, I’m not sure exactly what his primary diagnosis was, but he was a very aggressive, paranoid, and grandiose hoarder.  He stashed away bags of garbage, leftover snack packages, food from other patients’ meal trays, used hospital toiletries, and even stole soap out of another patient’s bathroom.  Needless to say, his room had a distinct odor to it.  My favorite thing about Mr. R is that he is an “inventor” who was going to get rich growing produce in dirty diapers and dissolving styrofoam with orange peels and drinking it to “sustain people for months and months.”  He actually set up an experiment in his room in which he filled some styrofoam cups up with orange peels and let them sit.  Much to the resident’s shock the following day, the oranges had actually dissolved the styrofoam.

The patient then proceeded to drink the contents of the cup.

Sometimes, it’s a very fine line between a revolutionary idea and the locked doors of the psych ward.

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