* * Anonymous Doc

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

"Hey, did you follow up on the patient's blood work?"

"Oh, I thought it was a lab error," said my intern.

"Um... what?"

"The numbers were crazy. I'd never seen numbers like that. I figured it was a mistake. That's why I didn't want to bother you."

"Did you re-run it?"


"Then how do you know it was a lab error?"

"Because he seems okay."

"And what if it's not a lab error?"

"I don't know. Then he's screwed."

"Exactly. So we need to act like it's possible the blood work wasn't a mistake. Which means re-running it, quickly, to check. And coming up with a plan in case it's not an error."

"But I don't know what to do if it's not a mistake."

"And that's why you're supposed to tell me instead of ignoring it and waiting for me to ask about it three hours later."

"Oh. So I should re-do the blood work?"


"And I should do that right away?"


"Before I eat lunch?"



  1. and they made it this far how?

  2. Are you my resident?

  3. surelly if the lab results made it to you then they have been checked by a biomed to make sure that they are analytically correct ie shit yes that the patients blood work. Sorry just coming from the UK it seem unusual that you would suspect lab error as if we make mistakes you lot dont get to see it!

  4. Maybe they don't make mistakes in the UK, but they sure do make them here. I respect a doc who will rerun a test to make sure. Better that than inappropriate or no treatment!!