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John Bibb, MD, FACEP
Do you know the difference between a fairy tale and a sea story as told by sailors? A fairy tale starts out, “Once upon a time…”; a sea story starts out , “Now this is no s*!%….”
So this did not happen when I was on duty. Not everything that goes wrong does so when I am on duty. A female patient who was in her 30s comes in with a complaint of lower abdominal pain. She is seen by the emergency physician who sends off a gram stain of the cervical secretions to the laboratory. The lab calls back and says we see gram negative intracellular diplococci consistent with gonorrhea. The patient is informed of her diagnosis. She says, “Is that right? Please send in my husband George.” The patient confronts her husband with the diagnosis and so George confesses about his extramarital endeavors. Then the lab calls back and states that they over decolorized the slide and that their initial reading is in error.