Impaled on a Fence
33-year-old man somehow fell onto the top of a fence and impaled himself just to the side of his anus. He was admitted for observation but no surgery was needed. He was discharged the next day with expectation that he would make a full recovery.
Weeks later, he returned to the emergency department. Though he had no symptoms at all, he was very worried his injury might some day render him impotent.
His examination was normal. I told him I was sure he would be all right but he wouldn’t take any reassurance. He nervously asked over and over again how I could be sure he would not end up impotent because of his injury. There was no way I could reassure him and he left just as worried as he had been when he arrived.
Dog Bite on the Nose
A sixty-seven-year-old lady came in with a bandage taped over her nose saying a dog had bitten her a week earlier. Underneath the dressing was a completely normal nose. She said she just wanted to make sure it was all right.
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