Sunday, March 23, 2008

this is what happens when your father is a urologist

When you are a teenager, you are required to work one summer in his office downtown. You have to take the L and figure out your way there and back, and then learn to answer phones and file things and write letters he dictates. You memorize phrases such as "the abdomen is soft with no masses or organomegaly" and can correctly spell at least 50 different medications, many of which are for ED (erectile dysfuntion) or BPH (benign prostatic hyperplasia), or help to treat LUTS (lower urinary tract symptoms), which can include a weak stream, dysuria, urge incontinence, frequency, and nocturia, among other symptoms.

And then, almost 13 years later, you’re trying to read his handwriting, and you’ve been staring at this one word for over three minutes, just staring and squinting and even holding the paper up closer to your eyes, and holding it up to the fluorescent basement lights to get a better view. And you’ve already done 27 letters and you only have 5 more to go, but you are stuck on this goddamn word, and you’re too anal to move on...you just can't decipher it.

And finally. Finally. It clicks. You recognize the word, and you throw your arms up in the air and yell "SCROTUM!"

It was scrotum all along.

8 comments:

Sara Ashes said...

My favorite was "Femoral pulses are normal." The fact that we a) know what femoral pulses are and b) know how to spell it!!!

Tara said...

This just stirs up memories of when your Dad was going to give me some antibiotics. I'm sitting at your kitchen table with your Dad looking in a giant book and he asks me if I get yeast infections often. I'm pretty sure I've never been more red cheeked in my life.

reem tara said...

oh my god tara. I'm so sorry.

Lethe said...

This is hysterical, Reem. Thanks.

RebeccaL said...

Heh. This is hilarious! I like your blog, it's quite entertaining! I hope all is well!
--Bup

Sara Ashes said...

so i recently diagnosed myself with dysuria. I was pretty psyched that I knew what was wrong with me and what it was called and what needed to happen, so I sent Mom a text that said "I have dysuria!" The exclamation point was to indicate that my satisfaction with the above stated knowledge of urological health, but Mom was all "are you *excited* about the fact that you have dysuria??" At which point i realized that only a urologist's daughter would not only put an exclamation point at the end of a sentence about bladder dysfuction, but feel so moved by the revelation to send a revelatory text to her mother.

reem tara said...

dysuria! maybe you should check your abdomen for masses or organomegaly. Or test the LUTS. Either way, you're probably screwed.

Sara Ashes said...

I probably need some pyridium or cipro.