* * Anonymous Doc

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

And a companion to yesterday's post: Top ten lies doctors tell.

1. "No, we ask everyone to get tested for chlamydia."

2. "This is very common."

3. "I'll call you tomorrow with the results."

4. "Your insurance will probably cover that."

5. "You look great."

6. "I remember that from the last time you were here."

7. "The lab must have screwed that up."

8. "I'll be back in five minutes."

9. "I don't have an e-mail address."

10. "I think you'll be OK."


  1. These are great but I have to say I've experienced the "common" one personally - one doc told me something was common when I was skeptical and asked, then I sought a second opinion in the same office several months later, and heard the exact opposite- "it would be really unlikely, I've never seen someone your age with this..." So doctors beware, some people won't take your word as truth, and rightfully so. Be careful how much you lie, you could lose credibility. Word spreads fast.

  2. Humor? What happened to the soul-crushing realizations about the futility of medicine and the meaninglessness of life? What happened to the tales of a man who has climbed out of Plato's cave only to find that the light of knowledge has scorched the Earth. Be careful, if you keep this up we might start believing that you actually enjoy being a doctor. ;)

  3. As a lab tech, I resent the lab screwup lie, but realize it's an easy one to use. Let's face it, you're face to face with the patient and we are in the bowels of the hospital, out of sight and easy to blame.

    It doesn't help that soap operas show characters coming into the lab to change names on tubes.

    But really, if doctors used the correct name for the test they want to order, label their specimens at the bedside with patient name and Date of birth and tell the patient ahead of time if tests require fasting or any other dietary restrictions, your patients would benefit from our expertise.
    When you want to order a EBV- and we call to ask which one, please don't say, "You know, the one everyone else orders..."
    But given what you do and what you have to listen to each day, I understand the lies. (Just give us lab techs a break every once in awhile.)