Twelve things patients would like to say to their doctors

doctor daveRecently, I wrote a column outlining things that doctors would really like to tell you but were much too polite. Judging from your kind letters of support such as "Your mother must wonder about your intelligence." and "Your photo lines our bird's cage beautifully" 
I have decided to further that column with one of what patients would like to tell doctors as pre your letters. So for those patients responsible enough to respond, here is an actual list of your responses and my response to your responses. 

#1:  Cold hands or stethoscope can be a shocker, doctor. 
Cold is an important sensation that we are actually using to test your reflexes and see just how high assorted body parts will leap, spin and purr, patient included. So while the stethoscope-from-the-icebox may seem like a cruel joke, we are in fact only doing this for you and your reflexes, sort of like smacking your knee with our rubber hammer or poking your eye with a pen. 

#2:  How about some magazines from THIS year in the office? 
I can only speak for myself by saying that the magazines in my office are all fairly current. We have up to the minute comments by President Reagan on Iran Contra and you can even catch up on Cassius Clay’s most recent antics. 

#3:  Bad breath simply won't do, doctor.
As health professionals we have to be examples of good nutrition. I realize that there might be a slight odor to such nutritious marvels as garlic, tuna and Snickers, but what could possibly say, “eat your leafy greens ” better than a sprig of parsley stuck between our teeth and gums.

 #4:  Have someone call if you're running an hour or two behind (our time is as valuable as yours). 
This is why you are called patient and we are called many other things. We’d love to phone you but we’re pretty busy chipping ice off stethoscopes.

#5:  It would be great if doctors could recommend some natural remedies at times, instead of just writing a prescription.
Just last week I recommend hemlock and an asp for Charlie Sheen.

 #6:  The walls of those little exam rooms are so thin, I'd rather not know about that next person's odd rash.  
Ahhh. This is another deliberate test, specifically of your hearing. In addition, we have found that waiting times are reduced as a result of eavesdropping. By simply announcing in the next room, “Today Bloggins, we are conducting a study on ALL patients with this new cayenne suppository, so hold still”, we find we patients move out of the office as quickly as the new long haired boy in prison.

#7:  Speaking of paper thin, can you actually give us a gown that's more than just 1 ply?  How about something with a thread count!  It's cold in that little room. 
The catwalks of Milan are teeming with 1 ply’s this year. Besides, if by the time we come into the room, your core temperature hovers around say… Nunavut, the stethoscope might actually feel toasty. 

#8:  We women would like to say that a picture on the ceiling would be nice. 
And cover up the skylight?

#9:  We want to know you're human.  Put some pictures or mementos up in your examining room of your family.
“…and these are my sons just prior to sentencing.”

#10: Don't look at our charts with that "oh brother not this person again" look on your face. 
You misread us. We are really saying “Hey brother, knot this person again” meaning we are pleased to have you come back for more sutures.

#11: And what's with all those sick people sitting in the waiting room spreading germs?! 
Here I agree. I feel that the healthy ones should be in the waiting room while the sick ones should wait down the road by the cemetery.

#12: I'd rather the receptionist wasn’t so loud when asking why I’m here!  
I wouldn’t worry about this too much. Very few people really understand the difference between herpes zoster and simplex anyways.

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