Irritating patient

Patient: What is the risk of infection with this surgery?
Me: About 1%.
Patient: Why isn’t it zero?
Me: 1% is a lot better than it used to be.
Patient, in accusative tone: By why is it still 1%? Where does the infection come from?
Me: Look, I’m the one who gives you antibiotics before the surgery. The surgeons are the ones who cut you open and put their hands inside. You can ask them.

Okay, I wasn’t quite that brusque. But it feels good to write the story that way. Turns out she did ask the neurosurgery resident, and his response was, “Why do planes crash?”

Perhaps not the most appropriate rhetorical question to ask a patient immediately before surgery.

Leave a comment

Filed under Work

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s