THE LOCUM DIARIES (32)


Day 32…

New day, New feel, New looks!

I don’t know why, but I really wanted to look dashing today. It’s not like there’s any lady I suddenly came across at work ooo, but it had been so long since I wore a starched shirt, well tucked in, on nice, well-ironed pants, sleeves neatly folded, shoes polished, tie…no, no tie. So I prepared like I was actually going to work (difference is that it was in the evening) and it felt so nice! By the time I was done and I looked into the mirror, I was ‘the finest of them all’, all ‘penged up’….and I left early too!

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I got to work and the whole hospital was happy to see me! ‘Ahn Ahn, wahs happening ry now?’ I wondered. The nurses were greeting, ‘Dr. George! Welcome o, how you dey’, the front desk lady (there are 2, this one is younger and has been given me eye) greeted, ‘Ha!Dr. George! Long time!’ (take note guys, when they say ‘long time’, it’s just the difference of a weekend o). ‘ which one is long time, you no see me last week?’ I responded as I smiled and walked to my office. ‘See love!’ I said as I settled down. I immediately ran out to go and eat at one Calabar kitchen close by(hunger wan kee boys), I devoured a big bowl of fufu and afang soup (very delish!). ‘with this load in my belly, how I wan take work this evening’ I wondered as I walked sluggishly back to the hospital.

Immediately I entered the office, the 1st patient came in; I had seen him the previous week, he came in then with symptoms suggestive of PUD and I had sent him for confirmatory tests.The 1st one was very expensive so I wrote a cheaper but equally effective option for him and he had come back with the results. He gave me the results and at that point it dawned on me… ‘How I go take read this X-ray now’. My patient was sat in front of me, I couldn’t afford to ‘fall hand’ na , I mean! I asked him to do the test and I won’t now be able to read the results? Haba!. I can’t be nabbed so what did I do? I took each X-ray, held it high into the light, looked at it all over, shook my head and dropped it, I did this for all the x-rays but I had absolutely no idea what I was looking for/at. I must have been bursting the man’s head with my ‘expertise’ cos he observed me carefully as I was doing all my theatrics. After I was done, I took the written report of the x-rays (which is where all the answers lie and the most important thing to me) and read it carefully, I couldn’t take it 1st and read unless Baba will think that he wasted his money on the test. Loool. After studying the findings, I confirmed our suspicions to him, duodenal ulcer.I explained the condition to him and counseled him on the management options. I prescribed drugs for him and he left. As soon as I was done with him, another patient walked in; a woman with her husband and 2 beautiful cute daughters. Cheeeee! As soon as I saw these 2 adorable girls, my ovaries testes leapt for joy! I started imagining the future looool (I wish my 1st 2 kids would be girls by the way). I literally left the work I was supposed to do and started playing with them (I so love children!). I got back from my playful world and faced the parents who were also laughing as I engaged their children, ‘what brought the whole house to the clinic today?’ I smiled as I asked. Apparently, they came with test results the wife had done some days back cos of symptoms of cold,weakness and dizziness but of particular interest to them was the pregnancy test, it was positive. ‘The PT is positive, what concerns do you have about it?’ I asked. Then the back story came, she had had 3 successive Caesarean sections as a result of a narrowed pelvis and as such, she was advised not to get pregnant at least for the next 3 years (her last child-birth was 2017). She tried talking to her hubby about family planning options but he refused and now she is pregnant. So basically, they wanted to take it out. I spent the next couple of minutes counseling them on family planning options and explaining its effectiveness.All through the session I couldn’t but smile at the children who were all over the place, cute! I thereafter wrote a drug for her to get and they left. Immediately after they left, another patient came in , I had seen this man before, a known PUD patient…that never smiles. I have always wondered why this man never smiles, are they not paying him salary at work? Or is it because the country is hard? (it is hard for a lot of us na). I have tried to ease baba, but all to no avail. ‘Good evening sir’ I said smiling widely, ‘How was work today’, he murmured ‘fine’ still squeezing his face like wrinkled leaves. He then went ahead to tell me what he came for; he was still experiencing epigastric pains…and has never been given his anti-ulcer drugs! ‘How?’ I asked quite surprised. ‘They said that the HMO that I’m using isn’t doing well’ he was brimming with anger as he said this. He went ahead to bring out the drugs he had been given, antibiotics and cough syrup! ‘Whaaat!?’ I was livid! He said that that has been the way he and his family has been treated all because of HMO, ‘I have complained severally, to Oga, my company and even the HMO company all to no avail, in fact, a nurse in this hospital told my wife, “I will not give you quality drugs o’ can you imagine’ he said, looking obviously vexed. In my head, I could already imagine the nurse who would say that (guess) lol. I was flabberwhelmed,. I apologized profusely for all he has been through and assured him that I will follow things up this time. I prescribed the drugs and asked him to show me drugs before he leaves. As he left I wondered, ‘this HMO-Hospital wahala, when 2 elephants fight, the grass in this case the patient suffers’ After some time, he came back to my office, ‘Doctor, I can’t take this any more, the nurse said they have only antibiotics, I’m leaving’. ‘Sir, please calm down, let me see her’ I pleaded with the man as I went to see the nurse. ‘What is happening? How don’t you have the drugs?’ I asked. ‘We don’t have it Doctor, I asked him to come back tomorrow’ she replied. ‘But I saw someone earlier who was supposed to get the drug, didn’t he get?’ I asked getting quite irritated. ‘I asked him to come tomorrow also’ she said. ‘Doctor, don’t worry I’m going, I will go and treat myself’ the man said as he made his way to the door. ‘Sir, at least let me write the drugs you will need to get’ I said to him. I wrote a prescription for him and apologized once more. I went to my office feeling disappointed at the whole system. As I wallowed in my disappointment, another patient walked in. ‘Good evening Doctor, I came to see Oga but he’s not around, I was directed to you.’ He said. ‘Ok, so what has brought you to the hospital today’ I asked him. He went ahead to tell me about his recurrent cough + other symptoms suggestive of asthma. I tried to get a history around it, trying to rule out other possibilities. He also complained about weakness and not been agile especially when he is with his numerous ‘concubines’. The way he said it almost made me burst out into laughter but at that point I remembered all the ethics of the profession and kept the jar of laughter locked. I had to listen to him and even tell him possible reasons why he wasn’t agile enough (how do doctors do this please lwkmd). I sent him for some tests after-which I prescribed drugs. Apparently, he was very impressed with my ‘counseling’ that he got my number and asked for my name*winks

By the time I checked the time, it was way past ‘closing time’ (chai! Primary school! loool). I left for home.

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