Post 85 The Rectal Examination ' Do as you would be done by'

 Recently, I had the unhappy experience of being curled up in the foetal position with my bottom overhanging the edge of the examination couch, whilst the urologist thrust his chunky finger up my anus!    Actually, it wasn’t the only price I had to pay for developing the problem that is so common in gentlemen of my age; he charged me £250 for assaulting me at that first consultation, though curiously only £100 when he repeated the indignity at follow up! What happened to the old Maxim 'Doctors don't charge doctors.' Having spent 40 years practising as an abdominal surgeon, I must have performed thousand of rectal examinations.      I had always understood that dropping one’s pants or knickers and exposing one’s rear end was embarrassing and it was my habit to precede the examination with an apology.     My apology though was expressed for potential embarrassment, not for any discomfort.   Certainly few of my patients have actually thanked me afterwards, but I can honestly

Post 84 The student who was not as clever as he thought he was!

  Jim was taking the Final Medical School Examination.    Pass and he became a doctor; fail and he would remain a student and have to sit the exam all over again in six months time. The most important part of the exam was the bedside assessment of clinical skills.   Each candidate was allowed 30 minutes alone with a patient before being required to present the case to an examiner.  Jim knew of course that the patient  would have been instructed not to reveal their diagnosis.    However, believing himself to be a rather smart young man, he decided that when introducing himself to the patient, he would open in a manner which might trick them into revealing all. Instead of opening with the usual ‘Now tell me Sir, what symptoms do you have?’   he would distract the patient by engaging them in some inconsequential chatter, then suddenly throw in ‘Now we’d better get started, so tell me what’s the matter with you? It worked. ‘I’ve got dilation of my ventricles, ’ the patient replied. Jim was

Post 83 Genuine Gratitude

  Charlie was 91 years old and had been widowed some ten years earlier.    Determined to retain his independence, he lived alone with his memories.     Keeping himself in good shape, he had learned to cook simple meals, had mastered the washing machine and kept his home clean and tidy; he knew that was his wife Marjory would have expected.       He lived for his garden where he spent much of his time; it was his pride and joy, a place where he could lose himself in memories of 60 happy years of marriage. His son, who had emigrated to Australia as soon as he left college, had suggested that his father should employ a carer, but even though Charlie could have afforded it, he declined; he value his independence too much.    He did however appreciate the help afforded him by Linda, a mother of three and part-time supermarket assistant, who lived across the road.    She kept a weather eye open for him, popping in most days to check all was well and by helping occasionally with any shopp