Plain Tales from the Surgery

Turning a deaf ear

I was visiting an elderly lady with a cough. 'How's your breathing?' I asked. She didn't hear so I repeated more loudly, and eventually had to shout in her ear.

She turned and said: 'I don't have any problem with my hearing.'

My GP triage suggested she needed an audiology referral more than a cardiology one.

Dr David Rampersad, Devon

On the incontinent
I happened to come across this concerned, but amusing comment recently about an active, but now inhibited relative: 'My elderly mother used to travel abroad at least three times a year, mainly to France and Germany.

'However, she has had to stop doing this now because of increasing problems with her waterworks. I suspect she is incontinental.'

Dr Tillmann Jacob, York

A wee bit mistaken
My eight-year-old son recently came to visit me in surgery. It was towards the end of a late evening surgery, so he spent an hour helping the receptionist.

One of the jobs he did was checking that there were enough specimen bottles in all the doctor's rooms.

Later on at home, I was telling his father how helpful he had been, including putting urine bottles in the rooms.

My son gave me a very perplexed look and said 'wouldn't it be simpler for the doctors to just have a staff toilet'.

Dr Gillian Clarke, Redditch

Odd sense of humour
I recently saw a young man who was sent by his girlfriend regarding a mole on his arm.

On examination it looked like a simple harmless mole. As a matter of checking his understanding, I asked what would he tell his girlfriend regarding this.

Contrary to what I expected, he pulled a sad expression and said: 'The doctor told me this is a very serious mole and it has spread to other parts of my body. I have only a few months to live'.

I warned him that such a joke might actually be shocking news to his girlfriend. He left with a smile on his face.

Dr Priank Gupta, Wrexham

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