#7. It likely represents a contaminant. No further workup needed — The Micro lab
Well, we all know that a coagulase-negative staphylococcal infection in the sick NICU baby with one catheter per body orifice (natural and man-made) ain’t no contaminant. Or at least until you figure that out at the bedside, don’t make the bold statement. Still, many people feel reassured when reading this under the results. HAL 9000, I’m afraid you can’t do that.
#6. The kid is fine, you can see him tomorrow — On-call intern at 5 p.m.
There are reasonable chances that the patient will be in the ICU by the time you come in the morning, so plan your day accordingly. In a humble attempt not to upset an ID attending with a late sudden realization of a consult not placed at 10 a.m., the intern will infuse charming, positive thinking into the case presentation. A word of advice: Get the facts. What, where and when.
#5. Her story is a bit complicated … — Senior resident, patient hospitalized for 1 month
Anytime you hear “sorry” as a preceding statement, you know that indeed is going to be bad. ID subspecialists are known for their propensity to be tasked to perform comprehensive chart reviews to extract pertinent findings. The way I see it, it is a delicate task that can’t be just trusted to anybody.
#4. I just wanted to make sure that I was doing the right thing — A pediatrician in the community
If you are calling for help, it’s OK. We all do at times. You don’t have to know everything about infectious diseases; in fact, there are fellowships out there. Now, recurrent calls for free advice are not only greedy, but when this happens, things pertinent to this patient may be overlooked. This is a lose-lose situation.
#3. Regarding isolation, you will need to talk to Infectious Diseases — A nurse on the wards
Let me break this down: Infectious Diseases ≠ Infection Control.I know it’s confusing because the two have the “infect” prefix. The best solution it to do both.
#2. Uhmm, well, Bobby only skipped one or two doses — The mom who missed two appointments
Number of doses missed = 0.5 X (length of therapy [wks] X #daily doses) missed appointments. Try it next time, you won’t believe it.
#1. Hi honey. I’m on my way home — The ID doctor
Actually, I just remembered something. I should be back before it is too late, although I should stop by to see this patient and check two things before I take off and reply to this email and … I did it again.
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