Sunday, 24 July 2011

Tips for Junior Doctors part 4: do your wondering beforehand

New patient got transferred to my ward with a hypo (insert every electrolyte here). And oh, yeah, something with his thumb. Now the hypokalaemia, hypocalcaemia, hypophosphataemia, hypomagnesaemia, hypoalbuminaemia, hypochloraemia and hyponatraemia and oh, the diarrhoea he had as a result of the phosphate suppletion were things I'm supposed to be able to deal with as a medical SHO. The resulting hyperkalaemia too.
Thumbs, however, are too difficult. The chart read 'consult plastics'.

I phoned my colleague who took care of said patient to find out if plastics have been consulted. No, they haven't.

So; I phoned Plastics, who, I might add, only have consultants. Said consultant was operating.

Me: 'Eh, I have a consult for you. Mr X has been admitted with about every possible electrolyte disturbance after quitting alcohol. Now I just got him on my ward, and I also discovered that you haven't been phoned yet for his *reads chart* eh... chronically grown in thumb nail'

Right. I just phoned an operating plastic surgeon to come and see a grown in nail. 

Dr Silicone: 'Right, I'll come see him Monday on my round'


  1. Oh how I love those moments....

  2. Oh that is so rich and so typical.
    Don't you love the way the specialists talk to us about it too, like they are enjoying the pain. Great post.