“I’ve had a patient claim that amputations run in his family.”
We’ve all Googled our symptoms before, and chances are, the internet has probably told you you’re dying.
If you are female, secondary to imminent death, pregnancy is the most likely result. Pains in your gut? Pregnant. Sore left forearm? Pregnant. Runny nose? Pregnant. Headache and dizzy spells? Dying… and pregnant.
It is a dangerous rabbit-hole to venture down. Basically, you should never, ever do it and should always seek the help of a medical professional first. You’ll probably be fine, and if not you’ll be in the best position to seek appropriate attention.
But that’s not what some individuals do, they self-diagnose. They go to the doctor not for a professional medical opinion but for surgery, a prescription of Adderall or because they’re pretty sure they’re already dead.
Mr/Ms Eleventy12 over on Reddit had the most excellent idea of asking the doctors of the internet, “what was the MOST incorrect self-diagnosis you’ve encountered in your practice?”
The responses are equal parts hilarious and concerning. Here are just a few of the
most absurd best.
8. Person who thought they had their wires crossed. Literally.
“Patient had diarrhea. It was yellow and liquid. The patient said there was something very wrong, and somehow the tubes got crossed inside of their body because the pee was coming out of their butt.”
7. This guy thought he had cysts. Actually just needed to stop touching himself.
“Anal cysts. Nope, he just touched his anal cavity too much and left it irritated.”
6. It’s cancer. I know it Doc.
“I had a male pt come in to the ED complaining of ‘breast lump’. He anxiously stated that the mass was very painful to touch and was convinced that he was going to die of breast cancer.
After a battery of questions I asked him to take off his shirt so I can examine and palpate (read: touch) the mass. After a couple of seconds, I turned to him and said, “Sir, that lump is your rib.'”
5. Growing new teeth or Mexican for dinner?
“As a self-diagnosing patient…One day notice a white, hard, jagged object protruding from my back gum. Can’t believe I’m having a tooth come in, especially since I’m 23 and had my wisdom teeth taken out years ago. Go to the dentist to get some X-rays annnnd it turns out to be a piece of a tortilla chip.”
4. This guy thought loss of limb was hereditary.
“I’ve had a patient claim that amputations run in his family.
He said that was the only reason he needed both legs taken off above the knee. He was adamant that it was not actually due to his uncontrolled diabetes, his enormous and continual sugar intake, his refusal to use insulin, or his refusal of treatment for the giant infected wounds on both feet.”
3. In this case, it is definitely better safe than sorry.
“A girl I know works in ER and not too long ago a college age kid came in around midnight to get tested for herpes. They figured it must have been pretty bad for him to go into the ER, after further investigation the small red dot turned out to be an ingrown hair.”
2. Thought she had a seizure. Actually just some good ol’fashioned loving.
“We had a 16 year old female and her boyfriend come into the Emergency Room. The girl thought she had had some sort of seizure. Our head medical resident went in to talk to her privately. He came out later barely able to contain his laughter as he came around the curtain. He took the team to a more private area and burst out laughing. In taking her history he realized she had simply had her first orgasm.”
1. Cancer or lint?
“While a mate was studying podiatry, a fellow student diagnosed a patient with a likely melanoma on his foot. He called in someone qualified. Turns out it was sock fluff.”
DING DING DING- Bonus Round- Just for added giggles… Sometimes, patients actually get it right. Bless him.
“Really old guy came in complaining of foot pain. He was diabetic. Lady doc already has a diagnosis in mind, but goes through the whole shebang. At the end asks And what do you think is causing the problem?’ He goes: I think I have a tack in my shoe.
He had a tack in his shoe and couldn’t bend over to get it out. She helped him remove it and he went on his way.”
We’ve all done it. What is the most ridiculous you have diagnosed yourself with?
Sometimes, the internet can be a weird and wonderful place. If you liked this post, check out these: