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Them annoying medics ... what you'd like to do to 'em!!

Soo ... following a really amusing phone call with a fellow AUKer and a bit of a rough few days I have decided to create this post!!

I dunno how many of you have had stuff thrown at you which has upset etc, but I have had a lot of it recently. I have found the best way to deal with it is to be ridiculous!!!

Some of the funniest ones I have heard are:

Making your (idiot - if they are!) cons run around a football pitch and make them breathe through a straw.

Practicing ABGs on horrid medics in A&E

And a few other ones (which probably aren't appropriate for AUK) which have been suggested whilst very hyper!!!

A VERY random post, but I really find this helps me when I am struggling with it all!! Makes me smile and remember who I am :-)

SO ... what would you do to the people who make life tough for you? ... In hospital/at the GP/in cons apts etc.

Light hearted fun ... nothing offensive please :-)

39 Replies

Laura this is very funny! I especially like the running round with a straw one. Not that I have anything against my cons, don't know him well enough yet. But this is how I've been feeling recently, my usual 3-4 times a week run has died and short walks are tiring me, not fun!

Sometimes I think it would be nice to have everyone walk round in our shoes for the day, even when people are nice they can't fully understand.


Make them run a marathon then tie a plastic bag over their head, lie them on the floor and sit a large dog on their chest, wait until they begin to turn blue then tell them to relax and breathe slowly.

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I am just off 80mg of pred, soi have a wide array of splendid, exciting and creative torture techniques which i can think of which probs cannot be shared on here without causing vomiting. however i think they key factor would be to remind them that pain is all in the mind and if they just forget about the pain and try to carry on with their lives as normal then it will interfer with their lives much less as they continue to be tortured and they'll feel much better for it, and do they want to be adicted to painkillers? no! so im not going to give them any!! :-P (im not crazy - honest!!)

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hehe! OK so I have some ideas:

-Lung swap! Your annoying cons/GP has to have your lungs for say a week or even a month (pref when bad) and you get theirs (actually maybe I wouldn't give them back). I would like to see how they view 'just' moderate uncontrolled asthma after that.

-Boot camp. Complete with hazing and challenges like having to run round and round, and when they get more and more SOB getting told they can't stop, they're not really SOB or tired, it's just that they're unfit and it's making them anxious. Also could have psychiatrists as drill sergeants reinforcing the message that just because someone is atypical does not mean that someone who is not a psych can diagnose complex psychiatric conditions.

We could also add some insect-eating challenges and name it 'I'm A Respiratory Consultant - Get Me Out Of Here'. Riveting TV I'm sure. ;)

-Compulsory corset-wearing. No your peak flow is fine, you can't take it off. No it's just anxiety that means you can't sleep with it on, you can't have it off at night. I'm sure you're just overly aware of your breathing/rib pain, try to forget about it and carry on as normal.

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If I was given good lungs I would never ever leave them. A girl can dream...

I love the corset and PF thing...

A doc at hospital once told me that having an attack is like running a marathon. So how about this... every time I have an attack, they run a marathon. Still doesn't feel quite enough though and they'll recover in like.. 2days? So yes I think marathon when we have attacks... then the corset for a good few weeks, throw in lots and lots of caffeine (for the heart palps and insomnia). how can we compensate for the terrible brain fog.... hm....

Then when they're absolutely exhausted...... make em do it all again :) When they are at their wits end hit them with the old ""well there's nothing I can give you... come back if it gets worse



I would seriously like my cons/resp team to spend a week or two in my life with my lungs.

Try to appreciate that yes I know in an ideal world I would be the perfect patient, i wouldnt refuse abgs and ivs and i wouldnt self discharge however if you were in hospital every 4-6 weeks being stabbed and prodded and having niv masks strapped to your face would you not try to keep that tiny bit of control.

I am trying to survive being a junior doctor and lead a semi normal life, so please stop asking if i am ok, whats my pefr, whats my sats. And yes i sometimes will go out and have fun, even if it means I will end up in hospital at 3am in my heels but it was definitely worth it!

I am sorry if I do not want to come into hospital/to clinic every 4-6 weeks because my lungs cannot cope without ivs and I am sorry that I dread every clinic as I know my fev1 will be terrible and my sats barely passable but I would rather struggle on at home than live in hospital.

I know you are trying to be supportive but time off to 'rest' really isn't an option as just with admissions alone I used all of my sick days and annual leave days last year to ensure I passed the year ... How would that make you feel?

And yes dragging myself around when tired due to up all night nebbing, with a PEFR of 40-50%, only maintaining sats when sat still and quiet is better than sitting in hospital ... As otherwise I'd be in hospital all the time!

Sorry this has just turned into a massive rant!

B x


I love the idea of a lung swap.


Hehe don't we all!

B, I am impressed that you manage being a junior dr even if it does mean a lot of admissions. I have a friend who's just become an F2 and from what he says it's a bit manic and active a lot of the time. I think I'd struggle at times and my lungs are much better behaved than yours.

On the other hand, your ability to see things from the patient's perspective must be a lot better than most drs (am sure you've heard that a lot before but as this thread shows and obvs you know anyway, the inability to really understand what's it's like is really ^&*() annoying at times).

I really want to do a lung swap. I have my eye on an ex-cons - he really annoyed me by the time I discharged myself by going on all the time about how I was well-controlled (about 2 months before I was admitted for the first time, yeah sure), and he was on the young and sporty side which ought to mean his are a good set to have...


Haha, thanks philomela. It's not really that impressive.

I also have just started F2, though only managed 2 weeks at work before crashing and burning :( though I am working in a&e with crazy shifts!

And yes everyone does say that I have an invaluable insight to the patients perspective. I do have an amazing ability to persuade patients not to self discharge! Lol.

Being a dr also means I know how to play the system, which isn't always a good thing.

And yes, young and sporty lungs would be the ideal set to 'borrow'!!


Oh I don't know; I've never been a 'crash and burn' type but when my lungs are unhappy they really like to slow me down and complain a lot if I try to do even a normal amount of walking at something approaching a reasonable speed. v annoying, and medic friend was on about how lifts at work are too slow and you have to use stairs, and as the F1 he got sent to random places 15 mins' walk away on another part of the hospital site...

But glad it is doable! :)

Oh, while we're doing the lung swap, if the drs who get our lungs don't improve them at all, we blame them for it, say it was all the way they breathe anyway and they just weren't trying hard enough to correct this problem.

Oh oops, sorry, you want your lungs back you say? Why? There's nothing wrong with the ones you've got on loan, as you yourself said! You just think about it all too much.

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One for you philomela ;-)

Give them pred for a month, then suddenly stop it ... Wait for a day or two until they really feel withdrawal, then put them on a treadmill set to fast with a slowly tightening corset on ... Then when they get sob, tell them they need to carry on, they aren't really sob, they are fine, it's just perception, they are ok suddenly stopping pred anyway etc etc ...

Feeling evil today ;-)


Im feeling really lucky... all the docs I see are fab. Granted I've had some horrific ABG's, but then all new doctors have to start somewhere!

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I can't blame medics for my ABGs; I have really elusive veins and arteries! Granted, last admission there was a doc on the night shift who got my artery first time round and I just sat and stared at her like "what is this sorcery?!"


Glad your drs are good Lynda :-) generally my local a&e is good, but don't get treated by the same people all the time and some have been awful


I'm lucky that unless I have a sudden crash which is rare, I get to avoid A&E between home management plan, Papworth phone support and rapid access to consultants/ward. Though its a hospital I'd rather not qualify for. I would also now refuse admission to general ward from A+E if they didn't follow treatment plan from Papworth and start driving down the A1 lol


I want to do an ABG on the nurse who told me last night I was having a panic attack ... Even after the dr said mine were awful

Cos they put you in resus for a panic attack ...

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A&E nurse 2 admissions ago fussed around telling me how to breathe while I was having a life-threatening attack..she tried to get me to do a PEFR and told me I needed to "just breathe normally..iiiiin...ouuuuut"..thank God for my dad who just looked at her in disdain and told her that I couldn't breathe and for goodness' sake could she just get the neb I've been waiting for!!! After that she looked properly, saw the retractions, realised I was literally moving no air and was like "oops..I'll go get that sorted for you.."


When discussing the problem with sleep and attacks that happen at night, I said to the asthma nurse that I wished I could phone someone up in the night just to say I'm symptomatic now and this is what it is like. Her reply was ""well I'm glad you haven't got my number"". That got me thinking that perhaps I should phone the doubting doctors/those that think it's not that bad because it happens at night, keep them up while my chest recovers, do this several times a night and expect them to function the next day!

I must say that this particular asthma nurse is actually rather nice about it and seems just as frustrated with my asthma as me (even saying that she sees my name on the list and wants to run down the corridor screaming/crying because she just doesn't know what to do)

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My asthma nurse has said she has just become used to the fact that there is nothing she can do (except occasionally let me skip A&E and go straight to the ward or neb me to be on my way) but that she does like to see me to check im not being too crazy!! And frankly i find it helpful to have someone to bounce ideas off, especially when complicated things need to happen with my steroids and A&E docs are trying to do odd thing swith them and i need to work out the right thing to do! hehehe!

i think doctors need to have at least 24hrs a week wearing a corsewt solidly and see how they like 'minor but persistant symptoms' hehehe!


Ooh Soph, yes on the corset! And Kayla, what a great idea re phoning them.

My GPs (I see 2 depending who's there and who's been handling it recently) have much the same reaction as your asthma nurse, Kayla! We were talking about anxiety and how I don't think it's that and she said 'No you seem pretty calm about it. Your asthma might not make you anxious though but it really makes me anxious as I have no idea what to do!'

Can't remember if anyone's said this yet but also ABG practice on them till they get it right - my wrists hurt after 2 unsuccessful attempts on Sun, then they didn't even bother to actually get one and decided sats were ok (even though the monitor numbers and ABG numbers weren't the same last time which was why they'd decided to do one this time). So a painful and pointless waste of time.


That's silly! Last admission, my sats were acceptable at 93% but my ABG showed raised CO2 and the beginnings of it's important they do ABG!


Gutted to hear you've been poorly enough to be in again Philomela. Some newbies that need a bit of practice I suspect, on each other though, not us.

Kayla- I've had similar. GP said ""chest sounds clear. What I really need to do is have a listen at night"". I did offer to phone her so that either she could visit me or vice versa but she declined, oh well.

When they're shopping I think we should take away a few items from their basket at the checkout and tell them to come back in two days time. How is it that you order ten items on repeat and only get 6 of them at the pharmacy.

Like others, I think the corset is a good idea, with some random tightenings from time to time, especially at night or important occaisions or just as you're talking to someone.

Maybe some no resist coughing pills too? Again to be given in the middle of the night or important times at work tec.

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Thanks Lou. Not really 'in', more '111 says go to A&E', 'A&E says jump queue into majors and then to MAU' and then 'A&E says chest is clear, sats are fine and we gave up on the ABGs even though there was a mismatch with the finger probe last time, so you can't have nebs' and 'we are going to keep you here for 7 hours, not treat at all, offer you antibs despite there being no evidence of infection' (so they can give antibs based on no evidence whatsoever except a dry cough but not nebs?!) then tell you 'you do have asthma but this is the cold air affecting your throat' (at the start of Sept during a spell of really pretty nice weather?)

So all the ideas above sound great to me. They were nice and everything, nothing about the anxiety thing at all despite me kind of slightly melting down in a really embarrassing way because I felt crap and couldn't breathe that well - or it was an effort anyway as obvs not THAT bad, couldn't sleep properly and there's nothing more I can do at home about it. But I don't want to go to A&E/hosp again ever, and I feel that it will be pointless if I do.

oops sorry for ranting. Just have a really busy week - dissertation due, job interview, bridesmaid at wedding - and can't afford to have crappy lungs/whatever atm. So anything which rams home the point about it getting in the way of things would be good ;)


Oh no Philomela, that sounds like a frustrating situation to be in and one that I have been in a fair few times myself so understand the need to rant!

My asthma nurse is lovely now too but can't really do much as she is a bit stuck in the needing SATs and chest to misbehave to treat seriously. Strangely it was when I told her the story about when someone 'borrowed' my staple gun and I burst into tears because I couldn't find it and needed it now, that she finally realised that rubbish lungs= rubbish night sleep = inability to cope. So they are finally looking at ways to help me get a better night sleep!

Hope you are feeling better soon.


Making them jump up and down on the top of the Mount Everest without a respiratory protective device.

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Oooh, everyone is SO inventive. I have (touches wood) always managed to avoid A&E, although I now realise that there was a point when I should have been going regularly but I was new to all this and didn't realise how bad it was - and how lucky I was that I didn't manage to finish mysself off.

I am currently a cougher and what does drive me nuts is being partonised by a GP who sits nodding his head as I tell him how difficult it is to cope when I quite literally cough continuously for an hour at a time, stop for 10 minutes and then start coughing for another hour, describing in gruesome detail just how productive the cough is (bucket loads!) and then sends me away without even taking the trouble to listen the the racket going on inside my chest. He clearly has absolutely no intention of doing anything to help me so why did bother to see me in the first place?

I would love for him to become his own patient! I want to be a fly on the wall and listen to him making ever more desperate attempts to convince himself that he needs additional or different medication. I want to see him dragging himself out of the surgery with the same old useless inhalers, knowing that it won't make any difference to his condition. And after he's been doing that for a few months, I'd like to make an appointment and see if he's learnt anything when I sit down and say 'now, about this cough .....'


Ok .... So he was nice enough and all, but I want to practice (badly!) doing ABGs on the dr that spent 10 minutes this morning literally digging in my wrist. My arteries hide because they don't like sharp pokey things sticking into them!!!

Got a great big bruise now ... No wonder they hide everytime someone tries to do an ABG!!!

Should start med school soon ... can you imagine?! ;-)


grrr there is just no need for that! I have had doctors do that - and Ive also had doctors do it in five seconds with no pain - so it CAN be done properly..! My hubbys a doctor and I beg him to leave the room when they start digging around in my wrists, it winds him up so much watching! Hope they are less sore soon....


Just thought I'd jump in! Talking about ABG's... I have developed a new philosophy on them - if I'm well enough to refuse one then I don't need one!

They normally go with the 'How difficult are you to get an ABG on...?' To which my reply is always 'Very, because you're not doing it.' Que a lot of them trying to get me to agree to just one go... Though that normally means they just dig around more, to get the most out of that chance!


Hate ABG 's had few bad ones and passed out so now do them when on my back lying down...

Last one was ok and never felt a glynis


1) Pump up their lungs with a bicycle pump and let them see how *they*'d like to breathe on hyperinflated lungs.

2) Tie them up in a chair and make them watch videos of all their patients struggling to breathe at home/coughing their guts out after they sent them away saying ""but you don't wheeze; your chest is clear; you can't possibly be ill, your peak flow is normal; etc, etc. And when all the videos are done, press the replay button -- again and again and again.

3) Dose them on pred and when they see their chipmunk face in the mirror, give them a lecture on how it is their own fault because they so wanted to be on pred

4) Secretly dose them on methacholine and/or histamine at random intervals - and when they complain about breathing problems and those breathing problems fail to improve fully with treatment - send them to a doctor that tells them it's ""just stress"".

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Give toxic levels of aminophylline to them and then laugh at them and tell them they just wanted it for the hell of it.


Teach them to tell the time.


Make them lie in a bay full of wandering, doddery old ladies who think it's fun to walk naked round the ward and get into bed beside you...

Countless cannula attempts on their feet/backs of wrists/other painful places

Make them experience a life threatening asthma attack.


Ooh, where to begin!

1) load them up with long term high doses of pred and then make personal comments about weight gain, face shape changes and also, deprive them of snacks because controlling cravings on pred is 'just mind over matter'

2) get them to walk on an uphill treadmill set a little too high and too fast in the cold for hours on end and at the same time ask them hundreds of inane and irrelevant questions

3) send them to the top of a mountain with a heavy back pack and tell them it's anxiety that prevents them breathing!

4) tie them to a ward bed and give them a hospital call bell that never gets answered

5) put them on the krypton factor aka making an appointment with their own surgery

6) ignore any further prescription requests without making an appointment -see no 5!

And one from my OH

7) ask them to be calm as their other half is turning blue fromash attack and only the doctor available is about 14 and hasn't read the chapter about asthma yet


Those mostly sound rather too familiar Moominmama (how are you btw, not seen you here for a while?)

1) is too familiar ugh.

Also: wake them up at 6am to do a PF every day.

Make them wear a corset to run a marathon and if they can't do it they're just unfit.

Get an asthmatic (not a medic, pref v uncoordinated) who's just had 6 back to back nebs to do an ABG on them.

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Hi back at ya Philomena!

The abg suggestion made me laugh aka as mining for red gold in my household ( especially when they scrape around) !

I've been trying to behave but not always managing! I've given up on my GP and have been seeing consultants at the hospital twice a month, disobeying district nurses and generally causing mayhem. I thought I would be ok but have just finished my 13th course of antibiotics this year and managed full blown MRSA since I was last on here!

How have you been keeping?

Here's hoping the new year treats us all well.


What i would make em do is this

Run a 10k then breathe into a paper bag get em rushed to a and e where i d give em a neb put them back in the waiting room where id make them run and breathe into the paper bag till they pass out them get a dr take em to resus and do repeated abgs in the same wrist and keep cutting their hand

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I think I am an agony aunt for my new GP everytime I go for myself or my husband he tells me the woes. I think he maybe trying to sympathize with me?! I guarantee I go away with more on my mind than I went with. As to what I would do to him. Well I want to encourage, praise and tell him to keep up the good work. He is a gp running a 2500 patient practice with only one nurse and one sectary. After all they are human underneath!


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