Tuesday, 29 December 2009

A suitable case for treatment

They said that before they give me an ARR next month I must go and see the anaesthetist to find out whether he would be likely to do me any harm, so on Christmas Eve I trotted along to consult him.

After checking that I was me and not some impostor, he asked me to give him an account of my medical history. This was clearly not something which could be covered in a few words, as most of the items I had to list were double- or even triple-barrelled, and I was determined to give him the whole story. So I began with complete details of my OA and my Type 2 DM and then dealt with some of the less exciting elements such as my HH and my BKR, before finally touching lightly on my SD and my BPH.

Taken together, these seemed to me to be fairly significant, but the anaesthetist was unimpressed: it seems that in terms of increasing the surgical risk they are all irrelevant or trivial.

"Didn't really need to see you", he said, "patients sent to me for pre-assessment usually have some condition which makes an operation dangerous and I have to warn them that they might die under the anaesthetic, so that they can become reconciled to the idea, put their affairs in order, make a will, all that. For your age, you're one of the fittest people I've ever had in here".

Then I remembered to tell him that I am allergic to oysters, though I knew that Whitstable natives are rarely used in modern anaesthesia. Anyway, he said that, like me, he acquired the same allergy after eating a bad one, but his reaction had been far worse than mine: he had vomited all night and bled from the eyes.

So all in all, the consultation gave me quite a good feeling, even though it may not have been really necessary.


Elizabeth said...

Good: many more OMFs to come. Who painted the picture?

Tony said...

Don't know, but it shows one of the first uses of ether, with Dr W T G Morgan administering it during a tooth extraction in Boston in 1846.