Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Just had to share this, lest I forget it....

You get to see all sorts in this job. We are the "window cleaners" of the medical fraternity. And then, just occasionally, you might even brush up against the paranormal. I’ve already told you about our resident reggae loving apparition in a past post, but today I have had a visitation from the Fair Folk.

Yes indeed, gentle readers, today I have consorted with a real life denizen of the land of Faerie. Thankfully one of the Seelie Court, so I think I’ve escaped without ill effect.

Now I’m sensing some skepticism out there, but I can promise you all it’s true. And how, you might ask? Well, because he told me so himself, and without me even having to grasp him by the beard (which was just as well, what with him being clean shaven and all), traipse three times (or should that be thrice to maintain the idiom…) widdershins round a mulberry bush by the light of the silvery moon or anything. Nope, he just came right out with it in the middle of morning surgery, bold as you please.

It transpires this particular sprite had suffered an accident at work. Namely he had barged his shoulder on a doorframe in a desperate attempt to conceal his identity from the mortal he was visiting. As a result he’s bruised his acromio-clavicular joint. In the end we got to do the examination through his T shirt since it had a broad neck, no doubt so he could keep it in place to save revealing his wings and all.

Still it remains the case that today I met with the Ambridge Tooth Fairy. He’s about six feet tall, and answers to the name of Steve* but Tooth Fairy he assures me he is. So when the kids of the Ambridge First School tell you they know for a fact that the tooth fairy has a very deep voice and knows a lot of interesting Olde English words for bodily functions and general Oaths try not to act at all surprised.

* obviously not really "Steve", but he made me promise not to reveal his true name. You’ll just have to trust me it’s something similarly non-descriptly male, and does not end in “-erbell” or in anyway sound floral.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Ecclesiastes Ch3 V1

Over the past couple of weeks it has become increasingly apparent that I need to cut down on the day to day distractions for a bit. I know posting here tends to be erratic at the best of times, and I regret to report that these are far from the best of times for the Ambridge Surgery, or at least for my own little corner of the same…

And so, regretfully, I have decided to place the caseblog in abeyance for a while. It remains my intention to return when I can, but I can’t give you any precise indication when that might be. In the interim rest assured I shall still lurk the bloggosphere, and likely will pop up from time to time in comments pages elsewhere. Feel free to use the comments that follow as you will, I shall be checking them still whilst on hiatus, and I very much hope to be back amongst you all again ere long.

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Acquired empathy

Our case for today is a professional gentleman in the first flush of middle age. He has been favourably compared with Daniel Craig* with respect to his chiseled good looks, and likes to think of himself as pretty healthy. In short he is your humble narrator.

“Whatever then can be the matter?” I hear you all ask.

I thank you for your concern, but pleased be assured all is well, or at least soon will be. For now though it appears I have been stricken by a comedy ailment. You know the sort of thing, ailments that are a source of amusement to all but the poor victim. The boil on the bum, or dose of the piles; the glowing scarlet hooter of acne rosacea or alcoholic liver disease; or as in this case the throbbing agony of the hammer splattered thumb or gouty toe.

Yes, ladies and gent’s, your poor old interlocutor has been stricken with the gout. It’s not the first time to be honest. In fact the last bout was only just around Christmas time, though the one before that was a good few years ago. So here I sit, like the plethoric squire in a seventeenth century cartoon, foot held aloft, wincing and any slight movement within three hundred yards whose trajectory might imperil the affected hallux. The good news is, from past experience, both my own and that vicariously obtained, I know it will be gone in a few days and do not then expect it to return anytime soon. Better yet, it seems still to be responding to good old Indomethacin, so no need to seek out the apothecary monks for their Colchicine…

Happily it affects but a single joint, and yet, in so doing, I am given a glimpse into the daily reality of a number of my regular customers who have far more widespread and longer lasting inflammatory joint diseases. And such an insight makes it easier to appreciate just why so many of them are so keen to continue their painkillers, even when it becomes apparent that the anti-inflammatories are slowly but surely rotting their kidneys.

I can’t help thinking they are all an awful lot tougher than me. Arthritis really isn’t for wimps.

* Readers are encouraged to ignore the off camera sounds of Milady spluttering into her tea mug in disbelief… a lad can dream after all.