Archive for July, 2011



When I started doing medical transcription some 17-odd years ago, I could tell pretty quick that I was going to have a hard time not developing every symptom of every sort of bone cancer and pneumonia and arthritis and lupus and Coxsackie virus.  Soon after that, a second side effect of my job began to manifest itself.  I developed an intense and highly irrational phobia about going to the doctor.

So, to recap, I was a hypochondriac who had a brain tumor every time I had a headache and bone cancer every time I got a cramp in my leg who never goes to the doctor.  This brutal little cycle was fed more and more the more medical records I typed.

And that was just when I was typing for a family practice clinic.  When I started typing hospital records, well, my head exploded because the toomah finally got so big.

For years, my medical transcriptionist friends and I would joke about our cancers and our funerals.  It was sort of how we deal with the fact that we are complete nutjobs.

I was a very, very good diagnostician, actually.  I have diagnosed myself properly with sciatica, bronchitis, pneumonia and this weird bladder thing that used to happen ever so often, which in retrospect was probably my poor innards begging me to take a break from my nightly practice of olympic beer drinking…and it worked too.  Sometimes I stopped for a day or two to give everything in there a chance to decompress and breathe.

Years passed without my ever darkening the door of a doctor’s office.  Up until this past Monday, I had been to see a medical professional exactly 4 times in 12 years – twice for my back, once for that time I was coughing so hard my bronchioles were bleeding, and once with a dental abscess…in other words, all times where I was completely back against the wall and had to go.

In early 2o09, after i’d quit the Olympic drinking team, I began to think maybe it was time to go ahead and get caught up with all the regular medical stuff that ordinary women who aren’t hypochondriac doctorphobes do every year, you know G-Y-N stuff, mammogram stuff, and routine labs, and well, this past Monday, I finally got the nerve up to do it.

On Monday, I went to the doctor for my “annual” exam, and while I had run through just about every possible scenario of things that were going to happen at my exam, I am still trying to wrap my head around what actually did.


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