The triage nurse at the front desk makes a brief note of a patient’s chief complaint. Here are a few unusual ones. These patients didn’t have anything interesting wrong with them but their complaints were noteworthy.
Big Time Wrestler
A professional wrestler was uninjured during his bout at the fair grounds. Afterwards, someone hit him on the back of the head with a bottle and he was brought in by ambulance, still in his wrestling costume and strapped to a spine board. He denied any symptoms. “I’ve had three concussions and I know I don’t have one now,” he assured me. He seemed to have no injury and was discharged.
Bit by a Dead Hamster
A woman called the emergency department and told the nurse a family member had been bitten by a dead hamster. She was wondering what they should do.
Bus Ride Too Far
An elderly man got on the bus to go from one town to another about 70 miles away. He fell asleep and missed his stop. He snoozed for another two hundred miles. When he finally woke up, he got off the bus in our city. Having no way to get back to where he really wanted to be, he called 911 and was brought to the emergency department.
From Hickeys to Bruises
A thirty-five-year-old woman came in complaining that her boyfriend had struck her on the back and elbow. The only abnormalities on her physical examination were the multiple hickeys she had on her neck. When asked about them, she said they also came from the boyfriend but “before this all started.”
Wanting to Look Good
A 74-year-old woman took ill and hurried to the emergency department. She said she came in sooner rather than later because she didn’t want to be a bad-looking corpse.
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