Stories from the medical community (and more specifically, the emergency room) have surely captivated people for as long as doctors have been around. Its fascinating to hear about the challenges tackled by heroic professionals in medicine.
Theres a forum on Reddit devoted specifically to questions for doctors, but the classic standby AskReddit recently provided a great roundup of stories.
Had a lady come in for shortness of breath, wrote Hoax13. Began to place an oxygen mask on her. She yells, I’m allergic to oxygen! and pulls the mask off. I heard the doctor laugh behind the curtain.
20-year-old male came in for stomach pains. Said he was hungry. Hadnt eaten in two days.
One time the news was playing on the TVs in the waiting rooms. The anchor mentions a man shot in a gang-related fight who later died from his injuries. Suddenly, my parents hear screaming and crying in the other room. It was the family of the guy who got shot. They had not been informed yet.
My husband is an RN and he treated a 15-year-old kid with a gigantic knife through the side of his head and out just under his eye. The kid was completely conscious and calm, sat upright and chatting.
A guy came in and said, I think a bug crawled up my butt this week! I’m sleeping somewhere, uh, not so nice. I feel him crawling around in there!
…He had a hemorrhoid.
A guy came in the middle in the night with a carrot stuck in his rectum. He said he was walking in his garden and fell.
Guy comes in with a salt shaker lodged in his rectum. Said he was changing a lightbulb then somehow fell onto it.
Put a flare gun between his legs (like a penis, I guess?) and shot it off. Third degree burns to the groin are not fun.
One woman came in with chest pain and had a wrench hidden under her gigantic floppy boob.
A guy got hit by a speeding ambulance. He was a trash collector, hanging off of the back of the garbage truck, and the side mirror of the passing ambulance clipped him in the head.
One guy thought it was a good idea to vomit out the window of the car he was driving at 70 MPH. He rolled the car several times and survived without a scratch.
Man with ten-inch cucumber in his rectum. Did not mention said cucumber til the doctor. noticed a bump on his stomach. Still didn’t say anything until we got a CT result.
An older man came in with vibrator in his rectum. His wife couldn’t get it out and refused to come with him.
A woman with schizophrenia was occasionally brought in by the police because the voices were telling her to kill her parents and neighbors. Apparently, the voices started telling her to kill the people in the ER as well.
One lady that had an allergy list a mile long, including all poisonous plants—duh, we’re all allergic to them, hence poisonous.
25-year-old male, comes in at 10 p.m. on a Thursday because he had a big bite on his leg. The guy is obviously tripping on something. We start asking the relevant questions and get to Why did your dog bite you? …He calmly answers, Well, that’s because I bit him first!
A lady came in complaining of involuntary whole-body muscle spasms. I asked her if she meant seizures, but she said no and proceeded to break into this weird standing whole-body-shaking dance, and told me See? Like that!
Some guy got belligerent on his bachelor party, which was a week before his wedding, climbed a tree, and jumped. Ended up with two broken legs and an upset fiance.
I have a cousin who landed himself in the ER because he thought that instead of a condom, he could put something tightly around his male appendage, and it would force the sperm to stay inside. Unfortunately, getting it off posed a problem and he ultimately wound up in the ER with a zip tie around his male appendage.
My wife is an ER nurse. Valentine’s Day tends to bring in the best stories. A few years ago a couple came in with lacerations all over their bodies. Apparently, the guy had duct taped a large mirror to the ceiling during their alone time and it fell and broke all over them. My wife got to pull little pieces of glass out of the lady’s skull and back for a few hours.
This one man came in and there was an order to X-ray both his feet. As soon as I got to the hallway with his room there was a nasty smell. I got to his room, opened the door, and almost puked. He was soaking is feet in water and it was the worst thing I have ever smelled in my entire life. His skin was peeling off and getting stuck to the X-ray board.
We had a middle-aged man bitten by a snake; he was referred to a tertiary hospital. He and his family negotiated if they could delay the referral for some time and wait for the quack doctor to see him and maybe suck out the venom.
A lady and her husband were driving down the highway. A big bolt falls off the back of a truck, bounces, and goes through their window. She slams on the breaks, stops and they start to look survey the damage. Husband looks at the wife and the bolt has gone right into her eye socket. For whatever reason, the doctors knew she’d die if they took the bolt out, so they had her husband say goodbye and had to eventually pull it out.
One lady had drunkenly hooked up with her husband six months after a hysterectomy and she came in with her intestine prolapsed through her vagina.
The dumbest: A patient arrived via ambulance to get his methadone prescription refilled.
A guy comes in coding after being found passed out at the kitchen table. They couldn’t get an ET tube in him but CPR otherwise was going okay. They discover that there is an entire hot dog down his throat, blocking his trachea. The RT ends up pulling out a six-inch-long by one-inch-wide wide wiener. Haven’t eaten a hot dog since then because I’m terrified of choking to death.
A girl in her twenties came in because she had popcorn stuck in her teeth.
A guy cut his thumb doing home renovation and wrapped it extremely tight with paper towels and duct tape. He went in three days later because he couldn’t feel it. He said I had to wrap it so tight to stop the bleeding, it only bled for like two days. They cut it off because it was dead.
Had a car crash through our ambulance bay, action movie style. The entire car was well within the building when it finally stopped. It was a 16-year-old kid carrying his 14-year-old brother who had been shot in the abdomen over some gang stuff.
Had a patient come in because he was dared to swallow a three-pronged fish hook, a nail, and a razor blade.
Morbidly obese guy came in for right lower quadrant pain. I lifted up his gut and found his lost wallet. Solved two problems.
My sister had a patient who was interested in having her clitoris pierced, but was afraid of the pain. Curious, she affixed a super strong magnet on top of and below the clitoris, but couldn’t remove them. By the time she got to the hospital, her tissue was essentially dead. The doctor had to scrape the magnets off of her dead clitoris, as there was no other way to remove them.
A guy came in that was around my age, mid-20s, and he was having severe pain in his shoulder—but claimed he didn’t injure it. He gets taken back, gets X-rays done, and finds out his body is absolutely riddled with cancer. He was given one year to live. The family’s reaction to the news was so heartbreaking to witness and something I will never forget.
One lady came into the ER for a foul vaginal smell. During examination, they found a dead gerbil inside of her.
Two extremely drunk men came in. One of them fell down the stairs, and somehow, he got glass in his eye. They pulled out the glass and sealed the gash in his eye… with superglue, wrote brianofcortlandt. They had to soak his eye in acetone to get it open.
Some of this material has been edited for clarity.