Wednesday, March 12, 2008

in urine we trust

So I'm in the chronic pain clinic this week. An interesting experience, certainly a change of pace from being in the OR, but a good reminder of why I didn't want to go into a field that involves clinic of any kind. I mean, I like wearing a white coat and playing with a reflex hammer as much as the next person, but the whole delayed-gratification-what's-your-insurance-plan-do-you-have-a-referral runaround of clinic makes me break out in hives.

Also, I know that the pain clinic population is sort of a skewed sample, but of the past three patients I've seen, all three denied to me that they were doing any illicit drugs, and all three subsequently had urine that tested positive for cocaine. Huh. I guess this is why some doctors get all hard and eventually start to think that everyone is lying to them always, about everything. I hope I never become that way, but it is a little disheartening. I had an inkling about one or two of them, but still, they told me that they were clean, and I just sort of wanted to believe them.

Another possibility: they actually were drug-free when we were talking, but that I was such a ballbuster that I caused all of them to relapse between the examining room and the bathroom.