Very young man phones – embarrassed – and thinks he has a problem no one else has ever phoned about: A dildo stuck where only gerbils run.

Caller: I have tried everything – and can’t get it out.  What do I do?

Me:  You will have to go to ED and have it removed, unfortunately.

Caller:  But……. what if I get a boner???

Me:   Believe me, we’ve seen everything.  Fear of getting a boner will be the least of your problems…..



Mom frantic, phoning about her little 2 year old boy (why am I not surprised!):

Mom:  My little boy has colored with non-toxic markers all over his body.  He even marked up his penis, under the foreskin.

Me: Well, you are lucky it’s non-toxic!

Mom: How do I wash it off without hurting him?

Me: Why bother washing it off? Just leave it.  I am sure he will get plenty of baths and it will eventually come off!


(And I am sure no one is going to see it anyway…….)

Caller phoned because her now screaming 2-year-old bit a hole through his tongue which is, of course, bleeding profusely…Caller advised to have it seen by an MD…

Caller:   But – I can’t take him to see an MD – I have a baby to take care of here too, and my husband has a fractured toe and he can’t walk and I have to work in a while and I still have to go to the grocery store and my friends are coming over for a party tonight……

Me: (in my head) Yup. Sooooo inconvenient…..

Mom is phoning because, after visiting her MD for mastitis, was told she should stop breastfeeding:

Caller: Can I still breast feed even with an infection?

ME: There are very few reasons you have to stop breast feeding – and that is not one of them!

Caller: Should I pump and dump my milk?

ME: No! Keep breast feeding.  In fact, breast feeding helps the infection resolve by clearing the ducts – just put warm compresses on first and take an OTC pain reliever an hour before!   There is no reason why you have to stop breast feeding!  Your baby might find your milk a little “salty” and not like it as much at first….but it is not harmful!

Ok MD’s out there, wtf?

Young man has picked a zit on his face and it’s now infected.  He has just come from his  MD  and has just started on antibiotics for the now-abcessed lip area.  He is phoning because the antibiotic isn’t working as fast as he would like:

Caller: If I go to Emergency, will they drain it?

ME: What did your MD say today?

Caller: Well, he told me that it’s better not to try and drain it at this time – I might get a blood infection – and I should just take the antibiotics…..

ME: You have to give the abx at least 48 hours to start working.

Caller: Well, I have to go to work tomorrow and I don’t want this on my face.  I just want to know if Emergency will drain it for me?

ME: You really need to let the antibiotics start to work.  One dose does not a miracle cure make.  Have you taken anything for the pain? Have you tried warm compresses?

Caller: No I haven’t.  I just don’t want this on my face!

ME: Unfortunately, you’ve already done the damage – it will take time to go down now that it’s there – there is no instant wonder cure – even if they did drain it – it will look just as bad if not worse…..take the abx and something for pain – you’ll just have to live with it now you’ve messed with it, and if your symptoms get worse instead of better in two days, call back.

…..and no – you don’t want to go to ED with this…..

Caller is wondering about her symptoms, phoned in with head stuffiness and vertigo:

ME: Are you having any other neurological symptoms other than dizziness…such as numbness, weakness – especially one side of the body, trouble seeing in one or both eyes, trouble speaking, confusion – trouble understanding simple statements, problems with balance or coordination or seizures?

Caller: Well, I am yawning.

ME: That’s not on the list….. (to myself) but I’ll put you down for “trouble understanding simple statements…….”

65 year old female, hx: Fibromyalgia, depression, headaches and IBS phones:

Caller: My vein is sticking out!!!!

Me: What? Where?

Caller: You know (me: no I don’t, but anyway) right here on my arm? Do I need to go to Emergency???

Me: Where on your arm?

Caller: Right at my elbow on the inside.

Me: That’s called your antecubital fossa.  That vein is supposed to stick out.  In fact, sometimes  when we need to use it for drawing blood or start an IV if desperate –  we actually put warmth on it to make it stick out.

Caller: But – I’ve never seen that happen before…!!!!!!!!

Me: It’s normal.   Don’t go to Emergency, whatever you do.  They won’t appreciate it.

Caller: But……..

Me: Believe me.