Emergency rooms are a locale of terror and sadness. Patients forced to check in under emergency situations can lead to doctor's best stories.
Tales of life-saving brilliance and ingenious solutions to troubling diagnoses. Sometimes, however, there's times when patients decided they wanted all the glory, attempting to cure themselves with misguided homemade remedies.
Spoiler: They're all awful.
Reddit user, r/Shandrith, got all the horrific details when they asked:
Medical professionals of Reddit, what is the craziest DIY treatment you've seen a patient attempt?
50. It Actually Worked????!Giphy
I got this one - once upon a time, the blood thinner Coumodin® was still under patent and was crazy expensive. It's used to prevent blood clots in patients who have a history of deep vein thrombosis, pulmonary emboli, strokes, and other clot related fun. It's hard to get the dosage accurate, so patients on it get frequent follow up visits to make sure that their blood is thin enough that it doesn't clot too easily, but not so thin that it they'd be in danger of bleeding to death if they were to have an injury.
This is not just a theoretical danger; the same chemical was sold as a rodenticide because rats who ate lots of it would die of bleeding (often internal bleeding) and it was believed that as they overdosed they would become extremely thirsty and would often exit their dens in search of water. The advantage was that your rats would not only die, but they'd not die inside your wall and stink the house up.
So physician relative of mine was assigned to the Coumodin clinic where patients came in for routine monitoring. She was talking with a long term patient who confessed that the prescription was too expensive, so he had stopped filling it many months ago. His clotting times were perfectly in the middle of the theraputic range; right where they should be. She looked at his chart, and saw that for many months his clotting times were fine; he was doing much better than the average patient.
She asked him if he could explain it and he said that he routinely pricked his own finger at home with a sewing needle and carefully noticed how long it took the blood to get sticky and the puncture to stop bleeding. If it didn't take "long enough", he would eat a small pinch of rat poison that he had purchased at the hardware store; if it took too long, he would eat less rat poison.
Bonus fact: over the last 50 years, wild rats have evolved to be immune to warfarin (the generic name of the chemical), and modern rat poison uses a different anti-coagulent. Also, Coumodin is off patent, and is much cheaper now.
49. Prepare Yourself, This Is Horrible
I worked on an oncology unit in the early 2000's and we had a lady come in with a massive fungating tumor in her head. Per her husband she had found a small lesion on the roof of her mouth and rather than have radiation, she chose to 'treat' it with essential oils and frankincense. So a small patch of squamous cell carcinoma had become a huge tumor that had invaded her skull and eaten away her jaw and eye socket.
Her husband finally didn't listen to her wishes and brought her in for emergency treatment. When the Radiation Oncologist doc on duty tried to open her mouth, her remaining teeth fell plink plink plink into his hand. She died in agony a day or two later. Essential oils are for making your house smell nice, not for treating cancer.
48. It May Work In The Short Term But Let's Not Keep It Like This
I worked as a tech in an ER in rural Illinois that occasionally saw Amish patients. One day we had a kid, about 14, come in after getting his hand chewed up by a meat grinder. Apparently this is pretty common, because it was the 2nd time I had seen it in a matter of months. Anyways, when I went to irrigate his wound I noticed he wasn't bleeding at all but had chunks of dark red "crumbs" stuck in it. Turns out they put cayenne pepper on it to stop it from bleeding before heading to the hospital. Honestly, I was pretty impressed. The only problem is that it was so deeply lodged into the cuts that I couldn't get any of it out, so he had to go to the OR and get his hand amputated.
47. Please Don't Get Any Ideas Here
I'm not a medical professional, but I once impaled my hand on the top of a fence I was climbing when my feet slipped out while I had one hand on top. I wound up with 18 stitches total, 10 internal and 8 external. They told me to come back in two weeks to get the stitches out.
So two weeks go by, and I don't have insurance. I figured "how hard can it be to remove stitches?" The answer: Not hard... However, a doctor probably would have looked at my hand and said, "those aren't ready to come out." I did not have any such medical knowledge, so when I removed the stitches I ended up with just a big hole in my hand. I didn't know what to do and I definitely didn't wanna get more stitches in the raw skin I had just removed them from, so i crazy-glued my hand shut and kept reapplying the glue a couple times a day for two weeks. In the end, I peeled off the strip of dried glue and my hand was perfectly healed.
46. The Lengths Of A PhobiaGiphy
This isn't medical exactly, I'm in dental/ortho, but I had a patient come in with a mouth full of weird gloopy white mounds on his molars and some old caps on his teeth that were falling off.
He was phobic of the dentist and hadn't had insurance for 10 years. Turns out, his temporary healing caps from 10 years ago were falling off of his teeth (of course, they were temps!) so he was gluing them back in with plumbing cement!
Then he decided to just go for it and do his own fillings!
When the caps would come off while he was chewing (and they did) and he swallowed them, he would sort through his poop for them and glue them back in.
I know it's pretty mild compared to the other things in this thread, but I think about it every day. We need dental insurance for everyone. :/
45. Sounds Like A Taurus
My dad once developed a cyst in his forearm. It was maybe half an inch of diameter. Didn't look bad at all, probably just grease and just below the skin.
Now he's a stubborn, "It's never cold, don't need a jacket", "I'm not sick don't need the pill", "Didn't hurt" kind of guy. So we all knew it was going to be a pain to get him to see a doctor. Not that we were worried but it also hurt if he touched it... Which he did, constantly.
It's been a month since he noticed it. It had grown a bit by then, probably just swollen because he kept scratching it like the big toddler he is. When all of a sudden he shows up with some (really dirty) dressing around his forearm. And we just knew he didn't go to a doctor so we're just waiting for him to tell us what he did.
Well. He's a jeweler. So he has access to different tools, which he proved he's not afraid to use. First he took a blowtorch and burned the skin. Once the skin was open he grabbed a mini drill and used it around the cyst. For the "root" as he described it he used a frame saw and cut it out.
It healed remarkably well. He still has a hole.
44. Somehow I Feel Less Educated
Obligatory, I'm not a doctor, but...
My mom tells it so much better, but here's a try:
My mom was the head nurse at a clinic here in Houston in the 80's. She worked for an old WWII doctor that had gone into private practice (old school GP) when he returned back to the states. Well one afternoon she told me that they had a patient come in that was running a high fever and was complaining of pain in her pelvic area.
Mom also tells me that there was a stench coming from the woman's lap that could only be described as enough to Gag a maggot off a meat wagon. She begins to interview the patient who told her that her and her boyfriend had been sexually active and that she has been in pain since. She thought that the woman may have contracted an STD and asked her to undress and wait for the doctor to examine her.
The doctor arrives and closes the door, only to re-open it a few seconds later mentioning about the need for fresh air. The doctor noticed that there was a vaginal discharge began to question the patient about her sex life, was it protected, non-protected, etc... According to mom, the patient told her "No doc, we always use a rubber." The doctor looked down then noticed that there was a small rubber band extending from the woman's vagina.
The doctor reached in with his gloved hand and pulled it out. What came next can only be described as a magician pulling the magic cloth out of someone's mouth... one rubber band after another came out over the course of the next 10 minutes. Finally once they were all removed, the Doctor had "the talk" with the woman about sex education and that rubber bands were not a successful contraceptive and not what they meant by "wearing a rubber" and then wrote her a presecription for Abx.
43. Garlic And Olive Oil Do Not An Antibiotic Make
Not a medical professional but a patient. I made a garlic and olive oil "healing serum" for my ears back in my crunchy days. Put a few drops into both ears each night.
After one week my right ear felt sore. My GP said it was a regular ol' ear infection and gave me an antibiotic. I went to a wedding in Maine that weekend and the pain never went away. It increased. I spent the wedding with my right ear throbbing and I hallucinated hearing a sports radio station with no radio around.
On my way home, traffic delayed my second bus to New York. The next bus was in 3 hours. I screamed and cried in Boston's South Station. Police called an ambulance and the hospital said I had a fungal ear infection in both ears, cleared them out, and gave me oxycontin for the pain.
Back in New York I got treated, but doctors didn't notice that I also had a middle ear infection at the same time. The pressure built up so much, it tore a gaping hole in my eardrum. So while I put antifungal drops that I felt go into my middle ear, I got placed into an unholy mix with antibiotics.
After three months, my ears finally cleared up. Six months post, my eardrum closed up. I have a cute scar there that marks my tumultuous ordeal. NEVER self medicate!
42. Proof We Need A Better Insurance System In This Country
When I was unemployed, I gored my shin in a gardening accident. I couldn't afford to go bankrupt until I could get insurance, so I cleaned out the 1" deep gash myself, and wondered what I could do to stitch it up. I didn't have floss or any sterile thread, so on a crazy hunch, I used crazy glue.
I can't believe it worked. I had to cut open the wound a few times to clean it out and prevent infection, and the scar is now just a dark pigmentation. I expected a horrible scar.
Pisses me off I had to resort to that, but I had no job for a 2 month period (laid off with no warning). Had to go off all my meds, too, and I have diabetes and a bad heart condition. Fucking miracle I didn't die.
0/10, even with rice. Would not do again.
41. Even The Medical Profession Itself Is WildGiphy
Former ER nurse here. I did the DIY for a homeless patient. Generally whenever we get a homeless person for medical treatment, as long as it's not life threatening, we don't go out of our way to treat them. Especially if they are self inflicted injury to obtain pain meds. Had a guy come in for severe constipation. He hasn't had a bowel movement in a month due to drug use.
We gave him laxatives and told him to drink lots of water and told him to be on his way. He kept on begging for help and refusing to leave without some treatment. It was a slow night and didn't want to have a scene, so I told the charge nurse I'll take care of it if it was ok and to ignore the medical items charges. She was cool with it since he WAS in actual pain given how stiff and distended his abdomen was.
So I took a urinary catheter and a 50cc syringe to the bathroom with him. Filled the sink with water. Had him strip down, some lube, and up the butt with the catheter. Took a good 20 flushes for him to finally have a bowel movement. He went from looking like he had 4 turkey dinners to a skinny featherweight.
The one thing I loved about working in the ER was, many times it comes down to DIY for things we don't have a procedure for.
40. Self Inflicted Heart Attack
Working in the ICU as a nurse I see plenty of crazy things but this patient of mine still takes the cake. The story goes that this gentleman wanted his Pacemaker taken out so he called his cardiologist and told him he wanted it removed. This patient was adamant it be removed as he had decided he could treat his heart rhythm problems medically.
His cardiologist stated that this was not a good idea and that his heart was reliant on his pacemaker to beat. This guy, who was probably not very mentally stable, decided fine my cardiologist won't remove it so I will. He drove himself to Walmart, purchased an Exacto blade and cut a long cut across his chest, he cute 2cm deep on his upper right chest where the pacemaker leads ran and he cuts right through them and his heart stopped beating.
Long story short he got his pacemaker removed! He infected the leads and it was contaminated so the surgeon had to remove it and he wouldn't give them permission to put a new one. It was a home remedy that actually worked for they guy to get what he wanted but can't say I would recommend it!
39. This Takes Going "Under The Knife" Too Far
Patient came in complaining of pain to her arm. I looked at where she points and it looked/felt like a cyst, but it was pretty deep. She said it was a recurring problem but it just kept coming back. I flipped through her chart and the first instance of that weird lump was nearly a year ago! I do some more reading and found out the patient would come in every few months for the same issue, but in-between, she would use a kitchen knife to dig it out despite being told multiple times not to, you know, do surgery on herself at home. That was probably why there was so much pain to the area and why it was so deep underneath the skin.
I phoned the doctor on-call who asked me a bunch of questions, and in the end, he said, "I don't even know what to tell you. I'm referring her to surgery. And tell her not to take a knife to it again!"
38. Take The Final Advice Here
Unfortunately, this is one I did myself. I suffer badly with kidney and bladder infections. I was sick of going to the drs for anti biotics so when I felt one coming on I would drink loads of cranberry juice but also drink 2 glasses (morning and night) of water with bicarbonate of soda in it (saw the home remedy online - it neutralises the acid in your urine)
Roll on 5 months later I get a kidney stone. Need surgery. Have surgery. But because I've been masking my raging infection (high pain threshold as well), my infection spreads. I become septic and rushed to ICU where I stay for weeks.
Spoiler: didn't die. But also made HUGE changes to my lifestyle and haven't had an infection in over a year.
Go. To. The. Drs.
37. They Don't Teach This Lung In D.A.R.E.
Had a patient who came into the ER with chronic cough, not resolving. She subscribes to holistic medicine, and lives out in the bush (Northern Ontario). Struggling with this worsening cough and feeling unwell x 2 months. The whole time was making a homemade bovine lung extract. She made on their farm from when they butchered Bessie: she was proud that she dried the cow's lung herself.
I suspect she either inhaled bacteria or she aspirated some of it and had a huge lung abscess. She required a lung pneumonectomy (removal of her R upper lung). Pathology came back with some bizarre bacteria I never heard of, nor was taught in medicine.
She survived, has become my patient and I still never see her unless her home remedies fail. She never really learned her lesson, but has thankfully sworn off the bovine lung extract.
36. You People Really Do Not Seem To CareGiphy
A customer in the pharmacy I worked in asked for Plaster of Paris so he could do his own tooth fillings. When I told him we didn't have any, he left.
He came back later for painkillers after using pliers to rip out all of his teeth.
Another incident. Woman runs into the pharmacy with a plastic bag in her hand, screaming that a dog has bitten het father's nose off.
Sure as sh*t, the nose is in the bag. When we asked where her dad was, she informed us that he was outside the store having a cigarette.
35. So This DEFINITELY Does Not Work
This happened before I was a doctor: A neighbor kid had a small cut on his hand that became inflamed. He thought it was a good idea to douse it with hydrogen peroxide, and use an unsterile sewing needle to poke holes in and around the injury so the hydrogen peroxide could get in to where the "infection" was. Even as another dumb adolescent, this sounded stupid to me at the time.
34. Bacteria Volcano
Dentist here. A lot of people come in with that temporary filling material from Walmart packing into broken teeth. If you have an big cavity that is abcessing don't plug the drainage hole (the cavity) it's like plugging a volcano.
As a side note, I'm really surprised Walmart hasn't been sued for that.
33. Even Our Furry Friends
Vet student here. We once had a family that came in when their dog ate a bag of Easter chocolate. We had to induce vomiting, but first asked if they had tried anything at home. They said they read online to make the dog eat a bunch of salt to make it throw up. This poor dog had a bag of salt repeatedly poured down it's throat before he came in.
Pro-tip: If your dog ever eats chocolate and you panic, have him ingest about 2 tablespoons of hydrogen peroxide. He'll vomit out liquid/frothy chocolate, so put him in the bathtub immediately after. Save your dog. Save your carpet. Please take him to the vet also! The Hydrogen Peroxide is just in the event that you can't rush him in!
Edit: During my emergency rotation 2 weeks ago, we were told by the attending veterinarian that 30ml (2 tablespoons) of hydrogen peroxide is safe to administer orally in case of an emergency. I understand that there are contradictory opinions on this and not all vets may recommend it. Again, it's meant to be done in case of emergency; you should still take your dog to the vet! I'm not licensed to give medical advice, which I thought was clear when I said I was a vet student.
32. Didn't Our Parents Used To Threaten Us With These????
Had a dude try and pull out a rotted tooth with pliers. Kid had a drug test the following day so to "cleanse" his system he drank a jar of pickle juice and then busted open a bunch of niacin pills. Patient with festering leg wounds that wrapped them with tampons and duct tape. First time I saw maggots in a wound. Stuffing raw bacon in their nose to stop a nose bleed. (But it actually kind of worked??!) Waaaay to many people with big pus collections under their skin that get drunk and stab them with broken glass or something else sharp. Many YouTube videos can demonstrate.
31. What A Horrid Way To StartGiphy
I was a brand new nurse, starting my career in a small, Southern hospital. I had a patient who was admitted to my unit with sort of nonspecific complaints about a wound on her breast. She was a "Direct Admit", meaning that she was sent directly to the unit from a doctors office, rather than going through the emergency room. When someone is directly admitted, I don't get a full report. All I can see are lab results and notes from previous doctor's office visits. Basically, I'm flying blind. As I'm getting her settled into her room, I start asking a few background questions that will help me direct my assessment.
So, I see that you were admitted because you have a wound. Did you have an accident? "Oh no. It just kind of showed up." How long ago? "Oh, it's been a while now. Maybe a few years?". Oh. Okay. Well, if you've had it for years, what brought you in today? Has something changed? Is the wound draining? Changing color? "Well... it fell off" What did? "My breast"
I help her get settled in the bed and move her shirt to take a look. Her breast, well, what was left of it, looked like this.The entire portion below her nipple had totally eroded away. She explained that she'd been putting triple antibiotic cream on it and had started wrapping it in a baby diaper when it developed an odor.
I kept my face very still, tried not to be visibly horrified, and listened to her talk about how she wanted to show it to her doctor at her yearly physicals but, for the last two years, her female doctor had been out of the office on the day of her exams. She didn't feel comfortable showing her breasts to a male doctor, so she let it go.
I nod, excuse myself from the room, and basically fly down the hall to the Hospitalists' office. I tell him that he needs to call his female NP down to this patient's room immediately "because she's old and scared and she won't show you her boob but it is falling off and looks like rotten cauliflower and no part of nursing school taught me how to make this better".
It took them all of 5 minutes to diagnose her with a very advanced funginating breast tumor. She was totally unsurprised and said that she "figured it was something like cancer". She placed herself on hospice and died less than two weeks later.
30. The Idaho Pessary
Background info for those who don't know: a pessary is a device that women (usually older) can use to place inside their vagina and help support it. Sometimes with age and history of many child births, the ligaments that support the walls of the vagina within the body can become loose leading to prolapse (meaning it starts to fall down into itself like a telescope). The pessary acts to hold it up and keep this from happening.
Anyway, I'm an ENT surgeon, but my buddy told me the story of an experience in the ER where a lady came in with the chief complaint of "roots coming from vagina". Turns out she had lost her pessary and decided to use a potato. It stayed in there for so long that it started to sprout.
This story made me ever so happy with my career decision to choose the opposite end of the body.
29. This Is What Darwin Meant By "Natural Selection"
Finally, something I can add to! When I was in med school on my family medicine rotation I was sent in to see a middle-aged woman with complaints of sinus congestion. Sure enough, from the beginning I can tell she's really stopped up with her nasally voice and my history and exam are consistent with your run of the mill viral upper respiratory infection.
I begin educating her on symptomatic management and the following exchange ensues: Patient: "Do you think it might be the flu?" Me: "It's possible but unlikely; it's really out of the typical season (it was June)" Patient: "Yeah, I guess I wasn't sure it was; I've been spraying Lysol everywhere and it doesn't seem to be doing any good, and it says it kills the flu virus" Me: "Well, that's something that could help disinfect the house and keep the virus from spreading" Patient: "I guess, I just wish it didn't burn so much" Me: "…what do you mean, 'it burns'?" Patient: "You know, when I spray it up my nose it burns so bad."
Yep. My patient thought that since Lysol kills influenza the best way to nip it in the bud was to flush her sinuses with it like a saline spray. It did not work, for the record. The fact that I didn't immediately fall over laughing and instead seriously counseled her against ever doing that again is still the greatest feat of composure in my entire career.
28. This Is Sad. Just Sad.
I wouldn't call it a "treatment" per se, but the patient did. I work in a home health care system. Patients have long term iv accesses placed and are able to infuse sterile medications intravenously at home.
Well, this patient kept getting really bad blood/iv line infections almost weekly and having his line replaced. No one could figure out why and line infections aren't very common. He also was running out of saline flushes a little quicker than he should with no explanation. So the line was being maintained appropriately at least.
Finally, while a nurse was there to get labs, change his dressing, and check for infection things finally clicked. He had been crushing pain pills, mixing with saline, and injecting it directly into his line. When asked directly he didn't deny it... The response was "well, no one told me not to."
Yes, yes we did. We told not to put anything we didn't provide in there. And the pharmacy providing the pain meds put "take by mouth" on the little bottle. He got repeated painful infections, MRSA, and thousands of dollars in unnecessary hospital bills. Idiot.
27. If You're Not A HUMAN Doctor, Why Would You Try To Be A Dog Doctor?
Had a patient try and buy syringes from my Pharmacy for injecting the dog. With what, you ask? Gatorade.
"My wife's dog has been really lethargic the last couple of days so we were going to try and give it some fluids in case it's dehydrated."
The instinct for some would be that it was just an IV drug user seeking clean needles but I can assure you this gentleman thought his logic was sound and in fact intended to murder his wife's dog injecting it with sugary Powerade.
26. These Things Really Shouldn't Work
I'm not a medical pro, but here's a story...my friend's dad got skin cancer on his right bicep. And at the time he was a large muscular man who ran a horse farm. HUGE ARMS. And so instead of going through all the normal bs of one getting skin cancer he caught it early and thought he could stop it at the source...so he heated up a railroad tie/stake with a massive torch he had on his farm, till past red hot, and shoved it into his arm where the skin cancer began...he did this TWICE. To himself, and wrapped up his insane burn/hole in his arm.
A while later he went to the doc, who said the burn he inflicted was the craziest sh*t he's ever seen. But all signs of the cancer were gone, he f*cking killed that shit and it never returned. His arm and burn healed months later and he remains cancer-free to this day.
25. Spritz Away
I had a guy come in for coughing and shortness of breath for the past few months. His lungs sounded awful. Got a chest xray that looked horrible, so I did a CT scan. Radiologist called it the worst case of necrotizing pneumonia he'd ever seen. Dude had like a 15% functional lung tissue left. The patient then mentioned things had been worse after he started using a new "breath freshener" spray....
He whipped out one of those concentrated air freshener bottles, supposed to cover up weed smell. Labeled Not For Internal Use. Apparently he had been using it like Binaca spray, and had already gone through 3 bottles.
24. When Life Gives You Lemons...Giphy
Paramedic here. Once had to explain to a family that putting lemon juice in the eyes of an unconscious patient isn't an approved treatment method.
And no, it didn't work. (It was an interesting moment when I had to explain why his eyes hurt)
23. Super Glue Fixes Everything
I work in dental and years ago had a patient attempt to super glue her front tooth back on after it broke in half.
She screwed up and ended up gluing the chunk to her upper lip.
22. Maybe Put The Cap Back On...Giphy
This happened when I was still a med student doing a rotation in the ED. Patient comes in and is pretty vague about his actual complaint, something about head pain but he looks just fine sitting waiting to be seen.
When I finally get to see him and ask him what actually happened. This guy managed to basically scalp himself, and apparently it had been like that for 3 days. According to him it was caused by falling in his bathroom and hitting his head on the toilet. He had been previously duct taping it down or using the hat to hold the skin on, but it wasn't sticking well and that's when his wife convinced him to come to the hospital.
21. Puff It Out
Adult patient had gas and poked a hole in his belly button with basically a knitting needle to release it.
Edit: it didn't work, he actually came in for the ensuing infection in his belly button.
20. Dogs Are Worthless
An old lady told me the rain hurt her arthritis. That's reasonable.
She also swore that dog spit had healing properties so she let her dogs lick her feet when she felt it coming on. She then wanted to show me a video of said dogs licking said feet.
I swiftly and politely declined.
19. All Good Stories Start With, "Get The Fish Hook"Giphy
A fifty year old man swallowed a chicken bone while eating, and it got stuck down his throat (upper oesophagus). Unable to take it out with his fingers or coughing, he got a fisher hook with a line and tried to rescue the bone with it.
He ended in an emergency department with both the bone and the hook in his oesophagus.
18. What Doesn't Kill You, Makes You Sicker
He had a guy come in with an abscess on his right thumb. When I asked him what happened to his hand, he told me about his recent deep sea fishing trip and was given the responsibility of cutting the fish with an open wound in his hand. A sliver of fish got in there and became infected as it healed, so this guy gets the bright idea of doing a little DIY wound drainage by grabbing his pocket knife and cutting it open, leading to a greater infection.
17. Put A Sock In It
In nursing school while I was on clinical rotation in urology, there was a man who ended up having his penis removed. It turned out he had an infection brewing for quite a while and thought the best course of action was placing a sock over his penis in hope that it would heal. He was generally confused and upset as to why this didn't work to heal the issue
16. Betrayed By Vick'sGiphy
My mom once melted Vick's Vapor Rub into my tea because she thought that would help my cold.
15. Super Man Potion
One of my first clinic patients was a dude who was injecting a mixture of testosterone, "human growth hormone," sesame oil, and sunflower oil into the base of his penis as a DIY penile enlargement therapy.
Well, it got infected so he ended up going to the ED for incision and drainage. I saw him as a post-ED visit and at that time, he figured that he shouldn't be injecting into his penis while it was healing. So instead, he was injecting his oil + sketchy hormones off the internet concoction everywhere else into his body (arms, legs, butt, shoulders, etc) because he figured it would still have some effect.
14. Making It Worse
As a child I got really bad sunburn.
The person looking after me coated my sunburn in baby oil to help it heal, and sent me back out into the sun.
I realised when I was older why my mum went nuts.
13. Okay MacGyverGiphy
A man who'd accidentally sliced his leg open at his workplace. He obviously figured that as surgeons use staples to close wounds, he'd cut out the trip to hospital and DIY. With an ordinary desk stapler. Arrived in ED with a pus filled wound with the odd discolored staple hanging off it some days later.
12. Somehow I Can Do Science Faster
Anesthesiologist here; we had a patient come in for I&D of bilateral deltoid abscesses. He apparently had thoughts of being a body builder, but instead of lifting weights or knowing someone who could hook him up with some quality steroids, he decided to bulk up by using some protein powder at GNC...
...and mixing it with water, drawing it up into a syringe, and injecting 20-40cc daily directly into the muscle. If bulk was what he was going for, it definitely worked, temporarily. A rip-roaring localized infection makes you look plenty swole. They got almost a liter of pus mixed with liquified protein powder out of each deltoid.
This also wasn't the first time he'd been in for this problem.
11. In No Way Is White Bread Good For YouGiphy
White bread soaked in milk placed on an armpit abscess to draw out the infection. Needed an I&D and a couple weeks of IV antibiotics by the time he got to us.
Either that or the guy who crashed his motorbike, scraped his leg all to hell, and then decided the best course of action was to self-cauterize it on the tailpipe.
10. Building Up Pain Tolerance
Dental student here.
We had a patient who declined a much needed cleaning saying he could do it just as well a home with a scalpel. Didn't brush his teeth but every few weeks he would go at the accumulated plaque and tartar with a scalpel.
Same patient also insisted we do a procedure without local anesthetic. He was an amateur boxer and was « building up his pain tolerance.
9. Bleach BlondGiphy
Pharmacist here. Worked in a shop where a woman asked for some advice about potential UTI or STI. Told me she had bathed her vagina in bleach for 5 mins to try and kill any bacteria. Miraculously, she hadn't done any lasting damage.
8. Take The Hint
Had a patient come into the ER with a makeshift bandage on his shin. He had fallen on rocks while hiking and left a three inch long, half inch deep gash in his leg. I go to pull the bandage off and as I'm peeling it away I notice the skin is completely black. It looked necrotic, like it had been left alone for a week. I look at this guy like he's crazy as he tells me the wound is only a few hours old. He's pretty proud as he explains that he created a makeshift poultice by chewing up leaves and moss, mixing it with river mud and stuffing it into his leg. That's what all the black mossy stuff was.
Hint. Don't do this.
7. Cool Down
There's a myth that lowering someone's core temperature will save them from an opiate overdose.
As a result, many first responders have arrived on scenes to find friends/fellow users inserting ice into someone's rectum.
Sometimes they don't have ice around though. Which leads to getting inventive. Popsicles, frozen hot dogs. My personal favorite (which regrettably I didn't witness myself, it was told to me by another medic) was a bag of frozen French fries.
Cold will do nothing to help someone who is overdosing on heroin or other opiates. What they need is respiratory support (oxygen and/or artificial ventilation) and naloxone (Narcan). If you're a user or know one, and somebody ODs, call 9-1-1, perform mouth-to-mouth and give narcan if you have it, but leave the popsicles in the freezer.
6. Seriously, Go To The DoctorGiphy
I work in the er at a trauma center. This guy comes in with his little girl and says that she was bit in the face by the family German shepherd. I immediately take her back assuming that I need to control bleeding. What I encounter is a little girl with a laceration going all the way from over her left eye crossing her nose and mouth. It is not bleeding whatsoever and it seems to have a odd looking substance inside. So I obviously ask the dad what she got inside it.
He responds very proudly with, " Ah yes, I packed the wound with tobacco and super glue. "
My dad had an abscess on his face. It was huge, about the size of a golf ball and horribly red. It kept getting bigger. My mom (a nurse) kept telling him to go to the doctor, but my dad was a ridiculously cheap.
One day when she was gone, we noticed that a big white head had formed on the abscess, and it was apparently ready to bust. My dad went out to the garage, got his shop vac, placed it over the white head, and proceeded to suck out the abscess. It worked surprisingly well and healed up after that nicely.
Mom was still furious, though.
4. Don't Trust SommersGiphy
I work in oncology pharmacy. I had a patient die of totally treatable breast cancer because they decided to treat it with mistletoe instead of chemo. All because Suzanne Sommers did. Yeah. The thighmaster lady. Don't take medical advice from the thighmaster lady.
3. Tooth Fairy
I had a dental patient with a dead front tooth that had turned black so she painted it with white nail polish daily.
2. Toxic Shocker
A mentally-delayed woman came in septic to the ED. Did xrays, blood cultures, urine cultures, the works. Finally found this weird image on her pelvis film, and we had GYN come do a pelvic exam. They pulled out this blob with bones in it.
Y'all, I swear to God ....
It was a decomposing frog.
She put it in her vagina for "safekeeping".
She got toxic shock syndrome from a FROG.
1. Well...What Happened?Giphy
Patient came into the pharmacy and asked if they could use a plastic bag secured with a rubber band instead of condoms
Any engaged couple looks forward to the big day when after months of planning, they get to tie the knot and declare their love in front of family and friends.
What could possibly go wrong?
It turns out there are so many variables that can contribute to making the bride and groom's celebration a major matrimonial miss.
Curious to hear examples of weddings gone wrong, Redditor lolf**kno asked:
"Those who have been to a ruined wedding, what happened?"
Dramatic brawls and speeches plagued these weddings.
Catty Attendees And Booze
"Very beautiful wedding in a huge barn at this apple orchard. They must have spent a ton of money on the decorations and catering because it looked like something out of a magazine. The ceremony was great, the flower girl did her thing, the vows got everyone choked up. Everything seemed to be going well. Not even 15 minutes into the reception the mothers of the bride and groom getting into a full out brawl, hair pulling, red wine being thrown. Their sons jump in to defend their honor, chairs start being throw, tables are flipped, parents are grabbing children and running for their lives."
"The bride and groom are horrified and leave immediately and head back their honeymoon suite. My fiancé and I left after this as well but we heard from some other friends that most people ended up staying and getting wasted at the open bar on the bride and groom's dime. Apparently, the fight started because one of the groom's sister complimented the bride's grandmother's dress. The bride's mom thought she was being sarcastic and called her a b*tch, then the drama ensued. Mind you they had all been pregaming the wedding pretty hard."
Playing For The Drunk Uncle
"I played a wedding where as we started playing the set, everyone ran outside and nobody was to be seen for the rest of the night."
"I originally assumed it was because nobody liked us but the bride came in afterwards and said there was a huge fight involving multiple members of both families and everyone basically went home upset, injured or in a police van."
"We couldn't stop playing since we were payed and it was our job, and the only person watching was the drunk uncle dancing on his own asking for requests we didn't know."
Maid Of Honor Speech Goes Off The Rails
"Was a guest of friend of the bride, did not know anyone attending. Very expensive over the top place, several hundred guests of this very Italian wedding. Maid of honor grabs mic at the cocktail hour begins her speech, rambling, drunk. Quickly devolves to stating the recently deceased mother of the bride was against this wedding and that's basically what killed her. Plus Vinny will never give up sex workers. She is tackled by several people and dragged away."
"The happy couple is separated and divorced within a year."
This is what happens when bad luck crashes weddings.
Tumbling Into The Sunset
"I work at a golf course with a lot of history behind it. We do wedding venues inside the clubhouse and the actual ceremony is held outside by the historic water fountain and large pond."
"First problem was the weather. I live in the high desert and it was very warm. A solid 90 degrees that day and it was also pretty windy. So everyone's outside, no umbrellas, no ezups."
"The next problem, and probably the worst, was the golf cart incident. The bride and groom wanted to 'ride into the sunset' on one of our golf carts. Drive around a little bit on the golf course. To be fair, it is beautiful on the course during sunset. However the cart had somehow gotten a nail in the tire, tire went flat, battery on the cart went crazy and the cart ended up freaking out. It came to an complete stop from 15mph to zero. The wheels and mechanisms locked up, almost seizing. Both the bride and groom (fairly overweight mind you) both fell out and rolled over a few times. They were totally okay, just a few bruises and perhaps a bruised ego or two. So retrieving that cart was fun."
"And last but not least, the power inside the clubhouse went out to do the high winds. There was no after party available. Only the cake was cut, hardly any food was given out. Yeah, not a great day to cover for someone on your day off."
"I was not born yet, but my parents rented the observation deck on the Hancock building in Boston for their reception. Tallest building in the city, beautiful view. My dad pored over historic weather charts to figure out what day was statistically most likely to be nice out. Day of the wedding comes and of course, thick fog unlike anything they'd ever seen before. Couldn't see a thing out the windows of the room they had picked specifically for the view."
"Worked out well though, they were happily married for nearly 30 years before cancer took my dad's life a few years ago."
"There's one other funny anecdote from that wedding: The wedding was held in Kings Chapel, which is an incredibly historic church here in downtown Boston that's somewhat of a major tourist attraction. To close that on a weekend afternoon for a wedding, it turns out, was not very expensive. The tourists waiting outside to see the church didn't know that, though, and someone started the rumor that my parents were incredibly wealthy, maybe even Kennedys. As a result, there were tons of people taking photos of them when they left the ceremony. Not sure if any of them ever figured out that my parents were most certainly not rich or famous."
"I was best man at my sister in laws wedding (stepped in for the brother of the groom, that's another story entirely)."
"For a whole year of planning all the bride (SIL) wanted was a dove release while they said handwritten vows to each other. Very small, non denominational (most of the family are atheist anyway) wedding."
"Day arrives (early summer) and something is off with the bird handlers. They show up a bit late and are sourcing help from the wedding party to get everything in line. When the time comes to say their vows I help the handler carry the chest with the doves in it over to what is to be the altar where the bride and groom are standing."
"Vows are just about wrapping up and the handler gives ME the signal to open the chest. I open it and see 20-30 DEAD DOVES IN THE CRATE!!!! I immediately close it to try and limit who knows what happened. Too late. The look of horror on the bride's was all that was needed. We spent the next few hours trying to cheer everyone up but by the end of the reception the entire wedding party had organized and filed animal cruelty complaints on the handler. It was all anyone could focus on."
Tragic losses unfortunately befell leading up to or at a couple's nuptials.
The Wedding Guest Who Left Too Soon
"When I was 6 or 7 I went to a cousin's wedding. Everything was fabulous for little me, so much sugar everywhere, basically heaven. The reception was in a big community center that was reserved for the occasion. Went to the girls' bathroom, passing by the men's room to see my uncle on the floor. Went back to the main room to tell my dad my uncle was looking weird. Well, uncle had a stroke and had died."
"The bride spent the rest of the afternoon crying, and everyone except close family left."
"Bright side is the mariage is still going strong 20 years later, despite what happened that day."
A Terminal Diagnosis
"Leading up to my friends wedding his father had been battling cancer after a terminal diagnosis. And it was touch and go whether he would be well enough to attend the wedding, in the end he was too unwell to attend despite wishing that he could."
"Just as we got to the wedding reception my friend was informed that his father had just passed away. It was devastating."
"Happened to my classmate. He is successful middle level manager, divorced, about 35yo or so. Found a girl of his dreams but from a provincial poor town. The girl insisted to have the wedding in her town to show off her 'success.' The wedding is crashed by her old friends including male friends who are not that sophisticated and have some tense feelings towards the successful groom from the city. Somebody starts a fight in the middle of wedding, groom is trying to stop it and got stabbed in the back. Died right there. And he was my classmate."
An Unfortunate Trespassing
"The wedding was at a state park that's famous for its giant gorge/waterfall. I don't know whose idea this was, but someone suggested a photo overlooking this gorge and everybody was game. The wedding party went around a stone security barrier and the maid of honor literally fell off the cliff to her death. It was like 500+ feet."
With a lot riding on a wedding to go off without a hitch, the mounting pressure is one where something is surely to buckle.
And because wedding guests are usually inebriated and high on the buzz of celebration, they throw caution to the wind and make some choices they wouldn't make under normal circumstances.
People's ill-advised actions can have regretful consequences, but no one expects death to be an outcome.
Fortunately, the weddings I've attended or heard about from friends were not as catastrophic as the anecdotes mentioned above.
While the Redditors' stories are sorrowful, it gives me a sense of relief these devastating examples are rare occurrences.
Sometimes I think back to a teacher I had when I was a kid who demanded to know whether any of us were "raised in a barn" in response to crappy behavior. Namely littering. She hated littering. Can you blame her? It's a horrible habit and some people do it with no sense of shame. She dedicated much of her time to telling students to pick up after themselves and dispose of things properly. For that, I'm thankful.
But why didn't anyone else get the memo? The trash I see on the streets is obscene.
People had lots of thoughts to share after Redditor SneakyStriedker876 asked the online community,
"What seemingly uncivilized thing is commonplace in society?"
"We delight in the deaths of others as long as we feel it was justified. But when the reverse happens we act all high and mighty like we wouldn't engage in the same behavior."
"Slaughtering each other..."
"Slaughtering each other via warfare to solve political differences. It's standard policy worldwide."
Indeed it is. And it seems impossible to stop.
"Littering. Especially dropping cigarette butts on the ground/flicking them out the window.
The world is not your personal ashtray/garbage bin."
Every now and then I find new trash in my yard and I am constantly amazed by how nasty people can be.
"Mobbing someone because of their opinion or for a comment they made a long time ago, even if that time was yesterday."
"Xenophobia. The fact that racism and racial violence still exist is an indicator that we're still tribal primates in fancy clothes."
And it makes no sense! It's not based in reality. We are truly a tribal species.
"Shouting while arguing, refusing to listen to the opinions of others, basically the inability to debate and maintain proper communication."
"Letting people die..."
"Letting people die of curable conditions simply because they can't afford healthcare."
Probably the biggest reason why much of the Western world looks at the United States with shame in their eyes.
"Parents forcing their kids to hug family/friends despite the kid being uncomfortable doing it. They feel uncomfortable for a reason."
"During the holiday season..."
"During the holiday season, customers take products off of our online fulfillment carts. Y'all have legs. Get your own."
"Using phone speakers..."
"Using phone speakers in public. I don't care what you and your friend think about that restaurant, or how much that Spotify jam speaks to you. Nobody else wants to hear it."
We truly need to stop all of these, don't you think?
Have some opinions of your own? Feel free to tell us about them in the comments below!
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I love presents. I try to hide my enthusiasm, and I do my best to appease the greater public by saying "it's the thought that counts." But that is a WHOLE lie. I don't just love gifts, I love great gifts. And if you go rogue from my lists, please keep a receipt. It's just plain rude to divert from what the recipient has requested.
This thought process has emerged from experience. I have received some trash presents over the years and now I'm too old to pretend you just went crazy while shopping. Like... "do you even know me?!"
Redditor u/sulemannkhann wanted to hear all about the presents some of us have received that we prayed, came with a receipt, by asking:
What's the worst birthday gift you ever got?
Have we met? That is an actual question I asked a gift giver once. (Who shall rename nameless) Football tickets. FOOTBALL TICKETS?! Who? What? I can't.
Looks FamiliarBroad City Wow GIF by Comedy CentralGiphy
"My own scarf. Yes, that's right, my mother went into my room took my only scarf, wrapped it and gave it to me like it was a new scarf."
"Thought I was getting a bike for my 15th birthday but my foster parents announced that they were sending me to a group home after living with them for 11 years. Devastation! That place was a wake up call. More independence then at my foster home but those kids had it really really bad, 12 year old heroine addicts, abuse... what the entire hell! I hurried up, graduated from high school at 16 and got the hell out of that place. I turned out ok, work in the legal field, live in Las Vegas. I did forgive my foster parents before they died."
The Forgotten One
"My brother and I worked for a farmer one summer, and he paid us with a used car. At the end of the next year, my brother graduated high school, so my parents paid me out for my half of the car, and that was his graduation gift. I gave them all a big discount compared to what it was worth. So like $500 for my share of a $2500 car."
"2 years later, and I needed $50 for some graduation fees, so I borrowed it from my mom until I could get to the bank. (Before mobile banking and ATMs everywhere.) Later, when my mom is telling me they invited all their friends over for a 'graduation' party, I asked if they had gotten a gift for me. "Well I gave you fifty bucks."
"I paid it back the next day, and she didn't blink. The 'graduation party' was just my parents friends, who said congratulations to me, but it wasn't really for me. A few years later, my little sister graduated, she got a car. They bought a used car for her, and our other little sister got the same when she graduated. My parents are mostly nice, and I never felt like they singled me out at birthdays or anything. Just my graduation seemed like I turned invisible."
Office Party Fail
"HR complaint from two subordinates fighting over how to throw me a surprise birthday party."
"I've never worked in an office environment, but the stories I've heard of people being required to buy a cake for the whole office and to celebrate their birthday with their coworkers would be enough to keep me in blue collar work for life, were it not for the fact that I love being active and working with my hands and could never sit at a desk all day anyway."
Basicslaw school finals GIFGiphy
"My Asian mom's gift was "no extra Kumon homework after school homework" so my birthday gift was that I didn't get extra homework from her."
Regifting is trash behavior. Do better. I'd rather you just say I forgot. Or... I just don't care for that much. But regifting? No.
"Stomach flu and my first ever period, at the same time. I think it was my 13th birthday."
"Omg, exact same story for me. It was my 13th birthday and my family took us kids to visit our relatives in Subsaharan Africa for the first time. I was sick, jetlagged, overheated and riding down a bumpy road in a Jeep driven by my dad in the complete darkness. We had just eaten at a restaurant where I found a giant scarab beetle in the bottom of my soup bowl. I have flashbacks to this day."
"My grandparents have been gifting me (and my brother) the same set of three vice grips for almost 10 years. Collectively we have 60 vice grips. I don't know if they bought a pallet of them, or where they are coming from. GET A GRIP GRANDMA!"
"I had a friend who's father was famous for doing Christmas shopping at the last minute. One year she complained that she went downstairs on Christmas morning and found, sticking out of her stocking, a spatula. Her birthday was a few days after telling that story, so myself and her friends all decided to get together and get her spatulas for her birthday, as a gag gift."
"Well, when it was our birthdays she retaliated. Which lead to a counter-offensive. And soon a new tradition was formed. And guys, I have so many spatulas now. Everything from dollar store cheap plastic, to hand-carved spatulas, a golden spatula, and even a replica of the famous Malaysian fighting spatula."
"I've got seasonal spatulas. As in, today it's time to pack away the Christmas spatulas and bring out the heart-shaped Valentine's day ones, followed by the bunny-shaped Easter ones. We've also been passing around this clip from the Weird Al Yankovic movie UHF. "Spatula City, we sell spatulas, and that's all!"
Their ultimate whack-a-doo move...
"A pair of homemade custom pajamas. Only problem was that they weren't made yet. It was just the fabric and a promise to make them for me. I had to give the fabric back and I never got the pajamas."
"Nothing legal just at our wedding they gave us a card that basically said 'have some land.' When the dust settled I asked what they thought we would do with it, they said build a home. I said ok, gonna need legal ownership for like building a house. They said sure we will get right on that. Then they decide to sell out and retire and never mentioned our wedding 'gift' again."
Gross...Disgusted Steve Carell GIFGiphy
"My grandma got me a hairbrush with a plastic horse head handle. The horse head was all chipped up and there was hair in the brush."
"My Godfather sent me a Birthday card each year which said, he paid 100 bucks to a bank account which I was supposed to get, when 16yo. He then got into alcohol, used all the money and died."
Oh for God sake, why even bother giving anything at all? Lint rollers, used brushes, homemade pjs... y'all ever hear of a gift card? Just put five bucks on it and call it a day. You can't hide cheap, so stop trying.
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I'm still on the fence about this whole extraterrestrial situation. I need more proof. Now I'm not naive enough to think that in this vast, endless universe only the human race exists. I just need proof, tangible, solid, didn't see it from my trailer through beer goggles proof.
I also need proof about the afterlife, another out there topic. Truth be told, I've never been that into this whole conversation. I've got enough daily problems on this planet, let alone worrying about making Will Smith's biggest hits into documentaries and not just popcorn/comedy space farce.
But let's compare thoughts...
Redditor u/ValencikHannibal197 wanted to discuss life beyond this planet, what do we really think? They asked:
What's the best theory on UFOs or aliens you've ever heard??
I definitely wouldn't turn down an excursion to AREA 51. I'd like to poke around and get a sense of the place. I've never personally been up close and face to face with a "non-Earther." Not sure I'd like to be...
TV Truthx files monkey pee GIF by The X-FilesGiphy
"UFOs/Aliens are a cover for all of the secret projects that the government is working on. Actually stole that from the X files."
"How human birth parallels alien abductions:
- Babies are taken from their home (womb)
- They still developing sight, so they see bright lights and grey figures.
- They hear an "alien" language they don't understand.
- They suddenly feel cold after leaving their womb.
- They are in a surgery room being poked with tons of instruments.
Long story short: some people suggest that abductions are just people who had memories of their birth."
In the Mind
"I just don't think anyone will ever see this. But I think that UFO's are the projection of our unconscious collective mind. Everything that exists in reality, also exists, in our immaterial mind. Is it possible that the insides of our mind are also just one drop in the ocean of consciousness... and together we create the material reality were in, simply by experiencing it in a real way, inside-out through our senses."
"My father was an aircraft mechanic and fabricator for test and spy aircraft for the USAF. He spent 75-85 working with test aircraft. He said that when they were going to do a test, that could possibly be seen by the public, they would make a betting pool on how many UFO reports local authorities and flight towers received."
Under the Seasci-fi ufo GIFGiphy
"I like the idea that some UFOs aren't machines. Instead they are some sort of Upper-Atmosphere Jellyfish. I found the issue of Fortean Times that had this article. Here's the cover: http://ft.gjovaag.com/q/images/a/ae/FT291.jpg"
Interesting. There are some ideas we can look into. None of it proof, but possibilities. There are certainly plenty of future film ideas.
"We are like that un contacted tribe and everyone agrees not to bother us."
"I've heard it explained from a channel (idk if you know what channeling is) kinda like this. First of all, we as a species tend to freak out, shoot first and ask questions later. Most humans would have a literal psychotic break. You have to believe in vibrational energy as it relates to our consciousness."
"The aliens (certain ones) are at such a higher level that it would be jarring for us to come in close contact with. We are slowly getting there but it's a process. Like 2012, end of the Mayan calendar, wasn't the end of the world it was the end of an energy cycle that we as the human race had never made it past before."
"Previous civilizations have been destroyed or destroyed themselves before they got this far. We passed a point where we are very unlike to destroy ourselves anymore. This doesn't mean we won't see some real bad hardships yet but we will keep progressing."
"train your eyes"Dancing GIFGiphy
"I was a firm believer in t em when I was in high school and kept googling theories and info in my spare time and during my study halls. They said their bodies were so lightweight or something that the reason why you can't see the evidence is that they disintegrate before hitting the ground."
"And then LOL it was so funny, some people would swear you could "train your eyes" to see rods... HhhahAHAHAHA. Like there were these experts. Video showed him walking around with a serious face, then pointing. And he's like, "that was one just there." "You can't see them, you have to be used to them... like me."
"I've spent many years immersed into hunting them finding them. That's why I can see them." And then one day China, who loves occult stuff, had like a lab that set up a nighttime camera to capture footage of rods at night... then realized they were normal bugs at overexposure. lol"
"The Dark Forest theory. Basically the theory that the reason we haven't made contact is because all the other civilized life in the universe/galaxy knows not to broadcast their location. They've learned that there's something awful or predatory lurking in the dark forest of our galaxy, and that it's better if they keep to themselves."
"That the universe is so vast that we haven't been discovered yet."
"This makes sense to me because traversing the distance to or from even our our stellar neighbors would require technology that is not known to us now or likely to be known by us anytime soon if it's even possible at all. To assume without evidence that aliens could possess this technology and have visited us does not meet my skeptical standards."
Back and Forthback to the future great scott GIFGiphy
"Time travel exists, and UFO sightings are actually future humans coming back to our time. That is why they are so discreet, and never openly make contact."
I hope time travel exists. Now that I'm onboard for. If aliens do exist... just come on out guys. We could probably use your help.
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