Monday, October 10, 2016

Another Stoic

“She thinks her drink was spiked,” explained the caller whose friend was bent over the toilet.

I explained that alcohol is a toxic drug no less than aspirin or penicillin and occasionally provokes an oddball reaction. Common stomach viruses cause most vomiting. Did her friend want me to come?

“I’ll ask.”

I waited for a long time.

“She wants to know if we can buy a medicine.”

I said that there are no good over-the-counter antivomiting drugs, but most vomiting episodes don’t last long.

“I’ll tell her.”

I waited for a long time.

“Will you give her a shot to stop the vomiting?”

I explained that I carry antivomiting shots and antivomiting pills and that they work pretty well. It’s a bad idea for a doctor to make promises.

“Hold the line.”

I waited a long time.

“She wants to know what she can eat.”

“Nothing,” I said. She should suck on a piece of ice until she hasn’t vomited for a few hours.

By now I suspected that the guest was not inclined to spend money. This is common, especially in Americans. 

“Does she want me to come?” I asked.

After the usual wait, I learned that she planned to take my advice and call back if she needed assistance.   

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