EppsNet Archive: Doctors

I Went Deaf on Christmas Eve

 

I. At home I tell my son I’m going to the urgent care walk-in clinic. “What for?” he asks. “I want to find out why I’ve gone deaf in my left ear.” “You’ve got an ear infection,” he says. “I had one when I came back from Thailand. I was also coughing 24/7 so I had to take this insane cough syrup and ear infection pills.” “I’m not coughing 24/7. I’ve got a lot of congestion though.” “You’ll just get the ear infection pills then.” “When you took them, could you feel your ear canal cracking open? Man, that’s the best! It’s almost worth it to have a clogged passage just to feel it cracking open again.” “Yeah, but it takes a couple of days.” II. At the doctor’s office The nurse takes my blood pressure. “100 over 60,” she says. “Is that good?” I ask. (I already know it’s… Read more →

Really Crazy

 

I had an office visit with my doctor, who is also my wife’s doctor . . . We always spend a few minutes talking about my wife, who, to use the medical terminology, is “really crazy.” “She is really crazy,” the doctor says. “I don’t know how you keep your sanity. You always seem so calm. I bow to you.” And she stretches both arms out and actually bows. I’m glad someone is able to get a laugh out of it. Then she refills my Paxil prescription so I can make it through the next six months . . . Read more →

Setting Expectations

 

A family member had surgery recently and had to sign a consent form: I have been advised that all surgery involves general risks, including but not limited to bleeding, infection, nerve or tissue damage and rarely, cardiac arrest, death or other serious bodily injury. I acknowledge that no guarantees or assurances have been made as to the results that may be obtained. And so on . . . Don’t say you weren’t warned! Medical professionals are very good at setting realistic expectations with the customer, whereas in IT we take customers into projects with glib assurances and wishful thinking. I wonder if we could make a practice of saying to customers even something as simple as this: “This project — like all projects — has a number of possible outcomes, and not all of them are good. Let’s go over some of the more likely scenarios . . .” Thus… Read more →

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