The Dumbest Patients

August 3, 2023 | Sammy Tran

The Dumbest Patients

These medical professionals have taken to the internet to expose their dumbest patients ever. From DIY treatments gone wrong to pure negligence and beyond, these stories are jaw-dropping.

1. A Mountain Out Of An Anthill

A teacher once told me a story about a lady who brought her young child into the emergency department complaining that the child was "sick" from eating ants. 

The doctors struggled to see how that would make her sick. It wasn't until after some time and the child beginning to get very sick that the mum said she gave her own child ant poison to get rid of the ants she ate. But the stupidity didn't end there. Then, she told the doctors it must be the ants and not the poison.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesPexels

2. Get A Load Of This Guy

One day, this 20-something guy (with his wife and mom in tow) walks in with a paper request for an analysis of his “swimmers”, pre-computer era. Okay, not the most comfortable encounter, but I’m a professional, and I’d done this drill many times.

It turned out he had not been briefed by the doctor and had no idea how establishing infertility in males was done. Well, okay—this would be a challenge, then. I took him aside and, using standard medical terminology, told him how a diagnosis is made and what he needed to do to provide a specimen. 

He couldn’t believe that I was asking him to “do it” into that container.  Astonished! Then he played dumb as if the concept was unfamiliar to him. We looped through the medical terms and procedure again, and I eventually resorted to every word I knew to describe the “act”. It was like a George Carlin bit! But that's not what left me speechless.

A half-hour later, he emerged from the toilet with two inches of urine in the cup. God almighty. The report came back: “Patient provided improper specimen”.

Weirdest Anesthesia StoriesShutterstock

3. They Must’ve Gone Ballistic

I had a patient who had a bullet lodged in her leg. We had the surgeon come and assess her. Based on its placement, he suggested leaving it because removing it could cause even more danger. We discharged her. She immediately walked to the ER in the same hospital to complain of leg pain. She had prescriptions and wound supplies in her hand.

Still, they brought her back, discovered her injury, and called for a surgical consult. The same surgeon was on-call and came to assess her.The surgeon made the same suggestion to leave it. Then we educated her EXTENSIVELY about never getting an MRI or the metal will fly out of her skin. Eventually, she left. But that wasn't the last time we saw her.

She returned a few months later to a sister hospital complaining of a headache. She got inpatient admission, and you guessed it: They did an MRI. The slug ripped out, and the MRI machine was down for almost a week!

Woman is laying in hospital bed.RDNE Stock project , Pexels

4. The Mother Got A Lot Of Heat For This

I was at the children’s hospital with my eldest when he was a toddler (ah, the day we found out he was allergic to penicillin) when a rushing team suddenly occupied the bed next to me with a limp, unresponsive infant. This happened on a hot day during the mid-summer. When I saw this poor kid—my jaw DROPPED.

The baby was in a full Canadian winter-level snowsuit. After they got the baby’s temperature down, I overheard the doctor losing his mind a little bit with the mother as she kept insisting she had to have her baby in the suit lest the baby risk feeling chilly. 

He explained that the minor discomfort of having to cry for a blanket did not trump the risk of it losing its life or the possibility of literally frying the kid’s brain. He had to get quite nasty with his wording in that she had almost lost her baby and might have given it brain damage.

Baby in hospital bed is getting a check up by doctor.CDC , Pexels

5. There Is No Plan C

I’m a pharmacist. One evening, I was working a relief shift (not at my usual pharmacy). A man comes in looking distressed. He tells me, “I had intimate relations with a woman I do not intend to pursue a long-term relationship with”. Yes, he said it just like that. I say, “Okay. I’m assuming there was an accident, or it was unprotected. How long ago did it happen?" 

He answers, “Last night, at 7 PM on the couch”. Woah, TMI. I just needed to know the approximate time so I’d know if Plan B would work. I start to tell him, “We have this medication called Plan B, and since the incident happened within 72 hours—” but he interrupts me and I was thrown completely off guard.

He goes, “Oh yes, I got that for her already yesterday, right after we finished. We want to know if there is anything we can do to know if she is pregnant now”.

I answer, “Unfortunately not. She’ll have to wait three weeks or so to see if she gets her period, and if she doesn’t, she can do a pregnancy test then. Theoretically, you could do a blood test for faster results, but that would also not be until a couple of weeks, at least”. 

He responds, “We’re just really anxious because she doesn’t want to be pregnant. Is there anything that she can take to prevent the pregnancy? Any multivitamin? Minerals? Food?" I tell him, “She’s already taken it, which was the Plan B. There are some other options, but those are prescriptions. And no, there are no over-the-counter products she can take”. 

Then he asks, “What about me? Is there anything I can take now to prevent the pregnancy? Any multivitamins or minerals?" A little bemused, I just answer, “…No sir. There isn’t anything you can take now”.

Pharmacist is consulting customer in drugstore.ArtPhoto_studio, Freepik

6. An Change Of Heart

This one came from a colleague of mine. So, this 60-something-year-old suffered from an acute complication and got a pacemaker to solve the problem. Everything went normally, and as planned, he recovered. 

Every care and medication that he needed to take got prescribed and explained and his medical appointments with a cardiologist/arrhythmologist were scheduled so he could get the follow-ups he needed. The man then proceeded to never show up to any appointments and never answered any calls from the hospital to know of him and reschedule. 

This went on for around three years. Then one day, he showed up without former warning and asked to talk with the doctor who did the procedure to put in his pacemaker. People were weirded out, but since the doctor was present that day and this patient was in clear distress, they talked to him and managed to find a couple of minutes to have the doctor check on him. 

Inside the appointment room, the doctor noticed something bizarre. The man was wearing a bra inside his shirt. The man explained he’d been wearing his daughter’s bra for three months after his “problem” got worse. So the doctor asked that he take off his shirt…

There he stood, this shirtless man wearing his daughter’s bra, showing off the pacemaker that should’ve remained inside his body. It was now dangling outside of it, being held by the left bra cup, with a big infected open wound above it with the pacemaker leads still inserted into his veins and connected to his heart.

Nobody had any idea how the man let that situation come to be or how he didn’t pass from sepsis or any other health problem that might’ve appeared, for that matter.

Shocked male doctor is holding his head.benzoix , Freepik

7. There Was That One Thing

I had parents bring their three-year-old son to the emergency department for one month of abdominal pain that kept getting worse. I ask all the routine questions for this complaint, lots of questions about his it bloody? Diarrhea? Mucous? When was his last bowel movement? Any changes in the stool? 

They deny any other concerning symptoms but abdominal pain. We do bloodwork, ultrasound, an X-ray...everything comes back completely normal, but the kid is intermittently screaming in pain, curled in a ball. 

Over the next five hours, I continue to repeat the same questions, I asked repeatedly if there was anything else going on that they could think of...nope. The kid just doesn’t seem well but we have no reason to keep him, we decide to watch him a little longer, let him eat.

The kid eats a bunch, a PBJ, apple juice, crackers, popsicle, with no pain, so we decide to send them home. I bring in the discharge paperwork and I’m about to start going over instructions, and that's when the dad drops a bombshell.

He goes, “You know... over the past three months, he’s had A LOT of worms in his poop". WORMS. You spent 6+ hours denying worms. I literally just turned around and walked out of the room without saying a word. I was laughing almost to the point of tears and could not wait to tell my resident. 

Deworming medications, a load of wasted time, and they were on their way.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesPicryl

8. The Parents Were The Real Suckers

While working the midnight shift in the ER, a family brought in a four-year-old at around 2 am. I asked them what was wrong. They said, “Ask him. He said he needed to see a doctor”. I further pressed, “Did he say anything was wrong?"

 They answered, “No. He said he needed to see a doctor, so we brought him”. A quick back and forth firmly established that they actually showed up to the ER at 2 AM, purely because the four-year-old said he needed to see a doctor and that they didn’t know why.

So I asked the child, “Why do you need to see a doctor?" His answer made me shake my head in disbelief: “The doctor has suckers”. To be clear, it was the parents who lacked sense and not the kid.

Little boy with mum talking with the male doctor.Ground Picture , Shutterstock

9. They Didn’t Air On The Side Of Caution

I used to be a medical oxygen tech, mostly doing in-home work. One guy was on such a high concentration that he would have drawn nearly zero oxygen from breathing regular atmosphere. This required two heavy-duty machines hooked up in tandem just to keep him barely alive. 

This was explained ad nauseam to him and his wife with fully signed documentation of every conversation. What they did was absolutely ridiculous—they’d shut one machine off because they decided it was too loud. He’d take his mask off because he decided it was too cold. She would unplug the hose if she decided it was in the way. So on and so on. 

They did everything you could think of that would restrict or cut off his oxygen intake. Then they would panic and call our emergency service when he started to react to no oxygen intake. I lived not even five minutes away, right beside our EMS station, and calls would always come for me to “fix” the machines at random times of the day and night, 3–7 days a week. 

They refused to call 9-1-1 because they “didn’t want to make a scene”. This went on for ages, well over 18 months, until he was having trouble sleeping one night, and they shut the machines off before going back to bed. It’s been years, and I still see the wife around town. She always glares at me as if I’m the one responsible for his demise.

Man laying on the bed at home and wearing medical oxygen mask.artursafronovvvv , Freepik

10. A Very Delicate Condition

I’m a social worker, and one of my clients kept getting pregnant over and over after having kids. I had a frank conversation with her about birth control or getting her tubes tied because she kept going through horrific births only to get her kids taken away, and she said to me that she didn’t know that birth control or being safe would save her from getting pregnant.

She didn't understand how she kept getting pregnant. Then I found out the dark truth. Because she was mistreated as a child, her father told her that she could only get pregnant when she fell in love, and she had never been in love, so she didn’t understand why she kept getting pregnant. 

Young pregnant woman is having a consultation with a doctor.MART PRODUCTION, Pexels

11. The Answer Was At Hand

I am a dermatologist in India. As is the culture here, people eat with their hands, and almost all of our curries or even other dry side dishes have a lot of turmeric. It is common knowledge to anyone born and brought up in India that this means the nails of your dominant hand (statistically, the right hand) will be yellow-stained because we have seen this happen since our childhood.

Usually, this wears off in about a day and a half if you wash it a couple of times. Cut to the first patient in my OPD, a young girl in her early 20s, very anxious. I ask her, “What brings you here today?" The patient says, “Doc, my right-hand fingernails keep getting yellow-discolored”. I take a look and confirm, “Only your right hand?"

 She answers, “Yes, and only after meals”. So I ask her, “Erm…do you eat with your hands?" The patient confirms, “Yes, always”. I then explain to her, “ know it’s just turmeric, right?" And she goes, “Yes, but can you make it stop happening?" Perplexed now, I just tell her, “For God’s sake, use a spoon!" But she’s still not quite getting it. 

Surprised, she asks, “So you mean there is no medicine to make it stop?" I just stared at her while she looked at me expectantly. “NO!" This might hit home more with people of South Asian cultures or people who habitually eat turmeric-cooked food with their hands. Anyway, for a grown person to complain about this was just…well, surprising and a little ridiculous.

Female doctor is talking with a patient and smiling.Kampus Production , Pexels

12. This Guy Wasn’t Very Treat Smart

I work in emergency medical services. I had a diabetic in his 30–40s who refused to take insulin since 2012. It was 2020 at the time. When I took his blood sugar, it only read as “HI," meaning it had to be over 700 for the glucometer not to read it. Upon seeing this, he asked me the dumbest question.

He looks at how high his blood sugar is and asks, “Is this because of all the ice cream I ate?" He was playing a Facebook Messenger video with his girlfriend the entire time. But that wasn't all.

I met him later on in the parking lot after he got discharged, and it took this man less than fifty paces from the ER door to rip off the bandage covering his IV and play with the IV wound until it started bleeding all over the place again.

He then knocked on our ambulance door and asked for a bandaid to fix it. We had to walk him back into the ER and bandage his entire arm with gauze so that, hopefully, by the time he got it off, it would’ve clotted enough for him not to end up exsanguinating himself.

Young man is talking with a doctor in hospital hallway.sanivpetro, Freepik

13. That’s Never Gonna Heel Now

This was circa 1983, and I’m a nurse (retired). I had this one guy in his early 20s who went swimming hammered in a notoriously nasty lake in our area. It was a “don’t drink the water” kind of lake, and he went in without shoes, stepped on an old can tab, and cut his foot open. 

He didn’t go to the hospital or try to clean it at all for about a week. His girlfriend said he kept saying, “It’s fine, it’s just a cut," when she pressured him to get it seen, so of course, he showed up in the ER with a foot that blew up like a balloon. 

Healing it took two and a half months in the hospital, with his foot completely laid open in surgery, doing debridement and packing. I can honestly say after over 30 years in healthcare stands as one of the nastiest jobs I have ever had to do—and I had been dealing with things like bedsores and open wounds from radiation treatments and cancer for about seven years at that point.

It was bad, but that's not all—on top of this, he was obnoxious, disrespectful, and, when the opportunity presented itself, cruel. Other nurses, you know the type, they’re everywhere. Hopefully not as open about it these days, but yeah. 

I had a student nurse I was training come running out of the room in tears and refused to go back in and would not tell any of us what he said, but I can imagine. Eventually, we finally got it cleaned out, and it’s responding well to antibiotics, and the tissue is granulating well. 

He gets sent home with antibiotics and strict instructions on how to care for it and to keep it clean and dry. THE DAY he left the hospital, he went back out to the same lake, got inebriated, put on some nasty tennis shoes, and went swimming.

He showed up on our floor again a week after being discharged. He lost the foot. His girlfriend left him.

Male patient is laying in hospital bed in dark hospital room.Valentin Angel Fernandez, Pexels

14. The Young Woman?

I'm just a med student, but a doctor shared this with us during class. She's a gynecologist, and this woman came to her complaining about how she hasn't gotten her periods in a few months and well, she was showing menopausal symptoms. In fact, she looked almost 50, but she kept saying she was only 30 and she can't have menopause.

Funnily enough, when the doctor asked if the women had a kid, she said, “Yes, he's 27 years old". I don’t know why people lie about their age, but this was a funny story for the whole class.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesShutterstock

15. Rubbing Salt In The Wound

My sister told me a story of a woman with chronic blisters and lesions on her lips. They couldn’t figure out what it was for weeks. It would heal and come back, heal and come back. The truth was disturbing—it turned out she would jam out on like three bags of salt and vinegar chips a day for weeks at a time until the sores hurt too bad to continue, then she’d go to the doctor.

Woman is eating chips.cottonbro studio, Pexels

16. Details Make A Difference

This was one of the funniest yet cutest ones from when I was a student doing a shift in andrology/reproductive health. 

Doctor: “So, you’re trying to have kids but not managing to. Do you have any other kids? 

Patient: “Yes, Doc. I have one”. 

Doctor: “Okay, so we need to do [this and this and that]”. 

Patient: “Okay, great”.

Then he proceeded to visit him and stuff, after which he went away. But after a couple of seconds, he knocked on the door again, saying: “Hello, Doc. My wife told me that it would be relevant to you that the son I have is adopted, but that makes no difference to me. I’ve always considered him my son!"

Male patient is talking with male doctor in his office.freepik, Freepik

17. A Cold Tap

I had a patient that came in because he was peeing blood with a previous history of bladder cancer. I ordered a urine sample and told the patient I would start working him up after confirmation. 

The lab called, and told me the urine sample looked like straight-up water and was cold, as if he just opened the tap and filled it up. I called the patient, dumbfounded. At first he denied it, but later came clean and said he couldn’t urinate so he filled it with water. No clear reasoning why. 

Long story short, he actually did have cancer.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesPexels

18. Cracking My Spine

There was a 60-year-old male hospitalized for an infection following a spinal fusion. He had surgery to remove the infected hardware, had a neck brace to stabilize his spine, and a treatment plan that says to keep it on 24/7 for four weeks. It has been 16 days and he removed it Sunday night. 

When confronted, he told me that he had cleared it with his surgeon and told them he had removed it. He had not. I explained that he has an extremely unstable spine and the wrong move could result in irreversible quadriplegia, to which he responded, “I don’t think that’s going to happen. Even if there’s an explosion I’ll hold real still".

On the phone with his sister, shouting into the speaker, he said, “Well I took it off because it was so uncomfortable, at first my neck was really stiff, but I shook my head a few times and something in there broke loose. It feels much better now".

His nurse and I stared at each other in silent horror.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesShutterstock

19. Do No Farm

I’m a physiotherapist. For those who don’t know, after a total knee replacement, you have a six-week window after the surgery to regain the range of motion. If you don’t regain the range in those first six weeks, it ain’t coming back. I had a patient who was a farmer who was very enthusiastic about regaining the range because he needed to be mobile for his work. 

I saw him for the first time about five days after his surgery. I showed him all the basic exercises, told him not to do any farm work for at least six weeks, and told him to come back to see me once a week for the first six weeks. He disappeared and came back about eight weeks later. 

His range was non-existent, maybe 30 degrees of range in total. He was visibly mad at me as if it was my fault. He was shouting and calling me incompetent. Our conversation went something like this: 

Me: “Have you been doing the exercises?"

Him: “No”. 

Me: “How often are you doing farm work?"

Him: “Every day”. 

Me: “Why haven’t you come back since the first appointment eight weeks ago?"

Him: “Too busy with farm work”. 

Me: “So, to summarize here, you did absolutely nothing that I told you to, and this is somehow my fault?"

I never saw him again.

Male doctor and displeased male patient arguing at clinic.Ground Picture , Shutterstock

20. They’re Healthy Oils!

Many years ago, I was working as an assistant to an occupational therapist. We got a call out to help mobilize a woman who had been morbidly obese and was told to lose weight. We learned from the daughter she had gained weight, but her mother would refuse to come clean about what she was eating.

All the daughter knew was that her mother may have been eating deep-fried food due to the vast amounts of cooking oil she found in the pantry. When we arrived, she had gained an extra six kilos but insisted she had lost weight. She did not look it. 

Before we began mobilizing her and checking her living room for trip hazards because she also had horrendous knees. We took a look at the pantry. Olive oil, peanut oil, sesame oil, any kind of common cooking oil you can find off a supermarket shelf, she had it. A vast stockpile of oil. I'd never seen anything like it.

We asked what she was frying with the oil. She insisted that she wasn't frying anything and that she was eating healthily since the oils she used were "healthy". We had to explain to her that oils are still fatty and will still contribute to weight gain. After a bit of poking around the pantry, I noticed that for the amount of oil she had, she had very little in food that could be traditionally fried.

She also had little in other foodstuffs that could explain the obesity. I brought it up with the therapist and the therapist then demanded the truth. We couldn't provide complete healthcare until we knew everything. That's when the truth finally came out.

She admitted that she thought healthy oils would help her lose weight and suppress her appetite so she had taken to drinking the bottles of oil whenever she got hungry. Needless to say, we disposed of most of the bottle of oil and set her up for a home visit with a dietitian.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesPexels

21. A Jaw-Dropping Encounter

As a pharmacist, I often encounter a lot of people who lack common sense; namely, everyone who comes in to buy homeopathic stuff, especially for serious things. Once, a lady came in with a prescription from the dentist for some heavy antibiotics and painkillers due to an infection that threatened to damage the jawbone.

When I asked if she knew how to take them, she went: “Oh, I’m not gonna take those; they’ll go right into the garbage. But I gotta buy them so that my dentist is happy. I’d rather stick with [insert name of homeopathic stuff here] instead of harming me with some devilish chemicals!"

Throughout the years, I’ve learned to just shrug and accept those Darwin-award candidates instead of arguing with them. It just infuriates me when I see that they’ve got children or/and pets…

Woman is taking medication from a pharmacist.freepik, Freepik

22. The Evidence Is Right There

I'm a gastroenterologist. I do upper endoscopies all the time. Somehow, there are people out there who think they can get away lying about whether they've eaten since midnight, before a procedure that will literally stick a camera into their stomach. 

Now, some people have gastroparesis and old food residue will be present in the stomach, but I've literally seen fresh, chewed-but-identifiable bacon and eggs hanging out in the stomach. In addition to probably making it a lot harder to diagnose whatever we were doing the endoscopy for, it’s also a HUGE risk for aspiration events, which can be lethal.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesPexels

23. Just A Typical Day

Had a patient show up in the ER with a wound to the back of her head. I say, “Hey Ms, what happened?” She responded, “I don’t know, I picked up chicken from the gas station and went to bed. And this morning I noticed I was bleeding”. I start inspecting the wound. 

Looks like it tracks pretty far, and there’s this strange cotton-like material sticking out that is also tracking too deep to visualize. I press her some more about the circumstances because my ER Doc spider-sense starts going off. “Were you hurt? Did someone harm you? Were you in a car accident? Did something fall on you?” 

She just kept saying “No. I just went to bed. Maybe I got up in the middle of the night to use the bathroom”. Finally I decide to send her through the Donut Of Truth to get a CT scan of her head before me and my trusty scalpel start seeing where this trail of mystery cotton leads. That's when I saw it.

The lady had a bullet lodged up against her skull bone. I still don’t have an answer to the cotton, but I’m guessing it was fired through some cloth. When I told her she had a bullet in her head, her response was “Oh. Weird". And then she went back to playing candy crush on her phone.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesPexels

24. You Never Said Anything!

I recently had a patient double down to the point of yelling that I never told her to stop her aspirin for a lung biopsy. During our clinic visit, she told me she didn’t think she took it anymore, but I reiterated it multiple times including asking her to check if she took a brand name and wrote it in my clinic note in two separate places that we’d discussed it.

Sure enough, she arrives and says yes, she takes it and no one told her to hold it for five days! Yes ma’am, we did. She says, “Well, it’s Monday, our clinic appointment was Friday, how would that make any sense that you told me?” Ma’am, the appointment was just last Wednesday.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesShutterstock

25. Fortunately, They Caught Him Red-Handed

I don’t know if a cleaner in a hospital counts, but this one time, I got to work early on a Saturday morning, and we immediately received a request for help from the ER and got sent over by my boss. When I got there, the first thing I heard was yelling from this guy behind one of the curtains. He was shouting at the nurses, “Don’t touch my downstairs”, and “I didn’t use any substances”!

Then I smelled iron in the air, and then I found out there was blood all over the hallway, with hand prints in blood against the wall. Almost the entire floor was covered in blood, with actual puddles in some places. What happened? The guy pulled out his catheter, causing arterial bleeding, and he decided to run away from the nurses who were trying to help him.

It seems like he lived through that. I had never seen that much blood before that day, nor after.

Doctor is looking at chart and walking in hospital hallway.RDNE Stock project , Pexels

26. What Are You Fishing For?

Resident doctor here, this happened during my psychiatry rotation in medical school. There was a patient at an inpatient psychiatric facility for suicidal ideation. She constantly insisted that she had a mass on her chest and demanded to be physically examined only by male doctors. 

When the psychiatrist I was rotating under declined to perform a physical exam, she asked me to do it during my daily patient interview. I also declined the physical exam, but had a bit of a hunch to check her medical records. It turned out she had an ultrasound done a week before that found only normal tissue without masses. 

However, apparently this this lady had frequented many doctor's offices with various complaints of an unspecific nature and would usually focus on particular complaints when she visited male physician's offices. We diagnosed her with factitious disorder, formerly known as Munchausen syndrome, and histrionic personality disorder. 

It seems her goal was mostly attention from medical professionals, but we also had to be careful to make sure she wasn't fishing for a lawsuit. Patients like her are why doctors document everything meticulously. The patient wouldn't admit to making things up all the time. 

According to the psychiatrist I was working with, she didn't believe any of her "health problems" existed and her primary goal was the attention from medical professionals. If she actually believed she was sick, we would have diagnosed her with illness anxiety disorder, commonly known as hypochondria.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesPexels

27. An Impressive Secret

In the ER at 4 am, a teenage girl and her parents arrive. She has been constipated for days and no poop has come out at all. I was busy, so I ask the nurse to check if the patient indeed has poop and needs an enema. So, a rectal exam is needed. Welp, we were in for a shock. 

A few minutes later, the nurse urgently calls me. When we uncovered the girl, we just saw this cute little head popping out. A baby on the way. We asked why she didn’t tell us, but she kept saying "I'm not pregnant" even while I was cutting the umbilical cord. 

She somehow lied to her parents through the whole pregnancy, even though she lived with them. I had to explain everything to the parents. They didn't have a clue, and judging by their face, I believed them.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesPexels

28. Thinking Against The Grain

I am a medical professional, but I have two really good ones about my ex-fiancé. Laugh at me all you want; this relationship was not my proudest moment. For starters, at our baby shower for my son, he asked if we were going to pick “innie” or “outie”. 

I looked at him like he was insane, and he started getting angry and just repeated the question louder until I shushed him and took him aside to explain to him that we don’t choose how the belly button looks; it just happens. Another time, he had really bad eczema and went to a doctor who suggested oatmeal baths during flare-ups. 

He bought a couple of boxes of Quaker Oats Maple & Brown Sugar and would dump the entire box packet by packet into the tub. It was a couple of weeks before I found the wrappers and questioned him about it. He told me (angry again) that he wondered why he was so sticky after getting out and why the freaking literal brown sugar was making his open wounds fester. 

I explained that an oatmeal bath is not flavored oatmeal and that he had to buy either plain oats or actual oatmeal bath packets. He was furious that I expected him to just know better. When I asked him why he picked maple and brown sugar, he said he didn’t want to smell like strawberries or peaches after his bath. 

After our son was born (and we had broken up, thank God), my son also had some occasional eczema, but not nearly to the same degree. The pediatrician recommended oatmeal baths, and GUESS WHAT THIS FREAKING GUY BOUGHT?

He said he only remembered what happened the last time when he picked my son out of the sink, and the towel stuck to him. When I started to scold him for being so stupid, he looked at me like was an idiot and told me he only used one packet since we were still bathing the kid in the sink instead of in an entire tub.

Woman is arguing with man and small baby standing between them on kitchen floor.user18526052 , Freepik

29. The Patient Had A Med-ley Bag

I’m a pharmacist. I had a woman bring in a literal sandwich bag that she kept all her meds in, unseparated. She needed help seeing which meds she was low on or out of and was asking different questions about the medications. 

When she pointed to an Apoquel and stated it was her blood pressure medicine, I immediately became concerned as to why pet medicine was in her bag (and also why she was mixing all her meds in a bag in the first place).

It was then that I found out that she had been throwing her pet’s meds inside her bag of medicine, too. So Lord knows what she’d been giving her dog or taking herself. I immediately stressed how important it is to keep medicine in its original container to protect both the medicine and herself and to know the directions of how to take it.

I’ve seen her a few times since then, and I’m glad to see she has since taken my advice. But how any pharmacist or doctor hadn’t advised her on this before is beyond me.

Woman with plastic bag with pills after buying from drugstore.zinkevych , Freepik

30. Switcheroo

Years ago, two firemen that were injured on the job were admitted to our unit. Both shared a room since we did not have private rooms, and they wanted to be together. The firemen thought they will play a trick on the nurse, so they switched beds and went by the other's name. The nurse was doing the vitals, assessments, and starting an IV on the one fireman and documenting it into the chart.

She was ready to administer the medications, and looked down at his hospital band, realizing that this was not the correct fireman. He was going to take it too. Both firemen were smirking like school kids. The nurse was so mad, saying how dumb they were, and began to lecture them for their childish game. The fireman was going to take the other patient's blood pressure meds when he did not have a history of high blood pressure.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesFreepik, mdjaff

31. The Best In The World

I used to work in physical therapy. I had an extremely sedentary patient in her mid-50s who had a body type out of a Tim Burton film. Think like an apple on two toothpicks. 

She told me that when she was in the military in her 20s, she was the strongest person on her post. She said she could bench press 500 lbs. She said she was 135 lbs when she could do this.

After I told her the world bench press record for that weight class for women was 300, which is incredibly impressive, I offered that maybe she forgot and was thinking 225-250, which would still be incredible. No, she doubled down. She proceeded to tell me that she could leg press 900 lbs, and overhead press two men sitting on a 2x4. 

For the record, this lady didn't even know how to perform a bodyweight squat in a pool with correct form.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesPexels

32. She’ll Just See Herself Out, Now…

I’m an ophthalmology surgical technician. A glaucoma patient in her late 50s was going blind despite her drop therapies for the past six months. Her pressure was consistently in the 30s and 40s. I asked her if she was using her drops regularly (twice daily), and she said yes. I asked, as politely as I could, if she’d missed any doses in the past month. She said no. I asked if she was using them properly, and she got super offended.

She asked me very rudely, “Do I look like an idiot to you”? I said, “No, but I just need to be sure. Sometimes patients think they’re doing it right, but they can easily miss it. Can you show me how you use your drops”? So she took out her drop bottle, gave it a good shake (so far, so good), looked up at the ceiling (also a good sign), opened her MOUTH, and swallowed two drops.

I got in trouble, but my OD backed me up and told her that’s the stupidest thing he’s ever seen in 25 years. She cried and said we were being mean to her and that the drops burned her eyes, so she didn’t want to put them in there, and since the eyes, ears, nose, and throat are all connected, why did it matter where she put them?

That’s not how glaucoma therapy works. She needed a shunt implant, and we were able to save about 30% of her visual field. But yeah, she was drinking her drops and going blind.

Young woman is holding bottle of drops.KoolShooters , Pexels

33. To Get A Doctor’s Note

My patient presented over several months with recurrent huge abscesses that we couldn’t explain. She was in horrible pain and had to stop working. We tested for everything. Eventually, her husband told me he made a chilling discovery.

She had syringes in her medicine cabinet. We think she was injecting herself with fecal matter. When the syringes were found, she stopped coming to her appointments. I think she has Münchausen syndrome. She wanted the attention from being sick. 

I started getting suspicious when she always would get a new abscess before any court dates for her personal issues, and needed a doctor's note to get out of it. She denies everything, and it’s very hard to have someone committed unless they are acutely suicidal.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesShutterstock

34. The Pain Meds

When I was a medical student, we had a patient on one of my rotations that was getting oral pain meds but insisting that we switch them to a stronger IV pain medicine because they had been getting nauseous and vomiting up all their meds. 

When our team rounded on the patient to check on them, we walked into the room and were quickly greeted by an eager patient that had been waiting to show us their vomit bag.

Turns out that it was filled with a lovely mixture of liquids and topped off with a handful of pills the patient had thrown in there to make it look like they couldn’t keep the meds down. 

When we called them out, the patient was in total denial and tried to reason with us that it must be vomit since it was in the vomit bag.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesPexels

35. That’s Ill-Advised

I used to volunteer at a free medical clinic to take vitals and histories. A woman came in with pneumonia and wanted to know why her normal treatment of drinking half a bottle of Listerine and inhaling a pack of cancer sticks a day wasn’t working. 

I asked why she thought ciggies were a good treatment for a lung infection, and she said, “Indians used to purify the ground by burning all the weeds away before planting, so I’m puffing to purify my lungs”.

I left that one to the doctor.

Young nurse wearing blue hospital clothes is seating worried.Cedric Fauntleroy, Pexels

36. Seeing Red

I’m an optometrist. I had a patient booked in for an emergency appointment with a raging red eye. It was very painful. So I looked under the microscope, and the cornea was not happy: wobbly reflexes, haziness, the works. So I asked, “What happened?"

 The patient said, “It’s my niece’s wedding this Saturday, and I wanted to tint my eyelashes to match my hair, and the color scheme of the wedding is light blue, so I used the same dye for both to match the color”. I inquired, “Does that hair dye contain ammonia, by any chance?"

The patient answered, “I think so. Do you think my eye will be better by Saturday? Will it match the color scheme?" I just responded, “Unless you can convince them to change the color scheme to red, no”.

Woman is checking her eyes at optometrist.Ksenia Chernaya , Pexels

37. This Grave Mistake Takes The Biscuit

I heard this story from a sibling; I don’t think he’d mind me sharing it just on the off chance it prevents someone else from making this mistake. Lots of surgeons have a similar story, but thankfully this one doesn’t end in someone’s demise. 

According to my brother, these parents claimed that their child hadn’t eaten anything before surgery, as they were carefully directed. But it turned out they thought the surgical team was just being cruel to their child.

So when she said she was hungry that morning, they detoured on their way to the surgical center and got her a full Southern breakfast. The result was triggering—she dang near passed from aspirating biscuits and gravy. 

I’ve rarely seen my brother so angry and disgusted (somehow, biscuits and gravy look even more nauseating the second time around) as he recounted what had happened.

I do not doubt that he tore a strip off the parents once their five-year-old was stabilized, and they probably still felt justified and angry at the surgeon for telling them what they could and could not feed their child right before anesthesia. 

The parents did feel justified and hard-done-by, although, as far as I know, they didn’t express anger at my brother (knowing him, they didn’t get a word in edgewise). There was no acknowledgment or realization that they could have been responsible for their kid's passing or that they’d made a bad decision. 

I remember they were annoyed by her whining for food.

Little girl is seating in hospital bed with her parents and female doctor.DCStudio , Freepik

38. A Sore Subject

I was in med school and an elderly patient was admitted to the medicine ward. She had these pressure ulcers and sores on her skin which develop in persons that are bedridden, and can't move on their own, so the skin gets "sandwiched" between the mattress and their own bones, causing ulceration. 

Her daughter, an adult woman, tried to convince me those sores developed because her mother had been waiting a couple hours in the ER until everything was ready to get her to her hospital bed. A few days later, I listen in on the daughter talking to the head of medicine and the doctor in charge of her mother's case, about treatment options and whatnot. 

The following morning, I do my rounds and when asking about the patient, this woman goes "the other doctors told me there was nothing to do for her!" and I wanted to say, "No lady, they told you exactly what they were gonna do for her". But since I was the student, I had to keep quiet and nod.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesFlickr, Judy Baxter

39. A Hairy Problem

A patient came into the lab for a KOH and culture for his "bumps," which were itchy around his inner thigh. We collected his KOH—a fungal test—and a bacterial culture, as his dermatologist wanted to figure out what was wrong. 

We're in a pretty big international hospital down in South East Asia, so we get all kinds of consults, including those who can pay for stuff that they don't need and coerce doctors into prescribing.

This particular patient didn't actually have "bumps", but his legs were really hairy and you could tell he had bad personal hygiene, so we figured he was a hypochondriac. Nothing pointed to bugs either. He was losing it with the receptionists and doctors who spoke to him. 

His KOH came back negative and he started harassing and chasing people at the lab by pulling his pants up and showing his "itchy" inner thighs. When we told him we collected the samples already and it was his doctor that was going to prescribe meds, he did Dr Google on himself and tried to make us collect more for his pending culture (it doesn't work that way). 

We outright refused so he disappeared for a couple of minutes and he came back with wounds all over his inner thighs telling us we missed it and it was our fault. They were clearly scratch marks he inflicted on himself for attention as he was making a scene. 

In the end, he barged into the laboratory demanding his "positive" results for his bacterial culture as he insisted the lab could prescribe him antibiotics.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesFreepik,DCStudio

40. The Outcome Suited Them Just Fine

I’m a pharmacist. One time my coworker, another pharmacist, got served with a lawsuit while I was there. The patient suffered a fall resulting in a concussion, and she claimed it was because her Lisinopril (blood pressure medication) got increased from 10mg to 20mg and that she’d not been informed and passed out as a result. She was suing the pharmacist, the pharmacy, her doctor’s office, and the doctor.

It eventually came out in early discovery that she was at a rave and had a BAC of 0.18, THC, and MDMA in her system. The case against the doctor’s office, doctor, and pharmacy fell apart right away, so she decided to go all-in on trying to sue the individual pharmacist. The pharmacy’s POS system confirmed that she checked, “I decline pharmacist consultation at this time”. So the case was eventually dropped.

Judge is working on his laptop at courtroom.Sora Shimazaki, Pexels

41. He Had To Take A Pregnant Pause

I work in the ER. I have so many stories. The one that left me dumbfounded was a woman who was brought in by her sister for pelvic cramps and amenorrhea for three months. Lo and behold, she’s pregnant. The sister informs me that she sleeps with the Brazilian construction workers building the condo complex next door. I ask if they have any questions.

The patient then asked me if her baby would come out speaking Spanish. After a long pause and her sister staring at the ceiling, I told her, “No, because they speak Portuguese in Brazil”. The patient seemed relieved, and the sister hustled her out of the ER before I could discharge her.

Young pregnant woman and smiling with doctor.valuavitaly , Freepik

42. It Cost Them An Amen And A Leg

I worked in cancer research/surgery a couple of years ago. There is a good amount of people who will refuse to have a small removal/surgery because they think holistic medicine or praying it away will work. They always come back, and we always have to remove so much more. 

One time a patient had melanoma on their calf, and the doctor wanted to do a simple wide excision, but they left because they wanted to pray it away. They came back a couple of months later because it got bigger, and we had to amputate their leg. I’m pretty sure they had positive lymph nodes at that point too.

Doctor is talking with female patient.Klaus Nielsen, Pexels

43. I’m Eating Enough, I Swear!

My mom lies to doctors all the time about the stupidest things like how much she exercises, and how much help she requires at home. She lies and says she can move around fine on her own even though it's not uncommon for me to have to help her to the bathroom supporting her the whole way. 

She does this because she doesn't want to be chewed out for her poor decisions. For example, she's just been diagnosed with cancer, needs stents in her heart and renal arteries because they are barely getting blood into them, and her kidney function is dropping scarily low. The problem? 

She currently weighs 67lbs, and the doctors refuse to perform surgery on her and the anesthesiologists all adamantly refuse to put her under until her weight is high enough. She barely eats, but lies to her doctors about how she's eating a bunch and doesn't know why she's not gaining weight. 

It's not uncommon for her to eat less than a single bun with some lunch meat on it in a 3- or 4-day period. I don't know what to do anymore. She insists to us, her family, that she's eating plenty and she'll gain weight. As her full-time caregiver, I have tried to explain to her that she simply will not gain any weight until she is out of a calorie deficit for a sustained period of time.

That is just basic biology, but she refuses to accept that and will either outright deny that she's not eating enough or will get so abrasive that it makes anyone in the family trying to talk to her about it back off because they don't want to deal with her.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesShutterstock

44. A Hole In One

My little brother was a nurse for about a decade. He has said many times that people stick anything up their butts. From lightbulbs to hairbrushes to a golf shoe. And at first, it's hilarious. Then, after a year or so it's not funny because you've seen way too many cases. 

Then, after a decade or so, it starts to get funny again because you think you've seen everything, and then one day a 45-year-old man is driven to the hospital by his wife.

He has a golf shoe lodged inside him and he told his wife that he and the boys were golfing, he slipped in the locker room and it got rammed up there, completely disregarding the fact that the part of the shoe that is inside him is covered in Vaseline...

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesFreepik,freepik

45. They Gave Her A Herbal Warning

A lady brought her baby into the ER with a rectal temp of 103. The kid had tachycardia (i.e. a fast heartbeat) and looked awful. The worst part? The lady refused all medications. She said she didn’t believe in them and wondered why her herbal tea (she brought a jug of it) wasn’t working. She wanted us to just check her out. 

She thought a children’s emergency room just checked them out. I tried to explain why the kid needed an NSIAD. She kept refusing. She said she didn’t know what was in it. I brought up the fact she had her kid in a hospital and that she received medication herself (IV, epidural, etc). The lady didn’t budge. 

Only concerned for herself, I told her that when the kid has a seizure or goes unresponsive and she calls 9-1-1, she can expect the medics to give the kid everything it needs regardless of whether she likes it or not. Desperate times called for desperate measures, so the doctor threatened to contact social services for child endangerment and mistreatment. 

Only then did she start to listen…for, like, five whole seconds. She then left against medical advice. People like this exist.

Young male doctor is examining the crying baby on hospital bed.Andrey_Popov, Shutterstock

46. Words Cannot Expresso How Ridiculous This Call Was

I’ve been a firefighter for 18 years. People call 9-1-1 for the dumbest things ever. But the one that takes the cake? It was a guy who called 9-1-1 to say he was choking. He answered the door as high as a Georgia pine with a lit joint in his mouth. I asked him who was choking. He calmly said that he was. 

He said he swallowed an ice cube, and now he couldn’t breathe. Just to be sure and partly out of morbid curiosity, I looked in his mouth and then asked him to take a few deep breaths...which he was able to do easily. He still insisted he couldn’t breathe. So I told him to make some hot coffee and then drink it. He asked me, “Why?"

I told him that the coffee would melt the ice cube, and he’d be able to breathe again. “Oh, cool. Thanks, man”. 

Then I left.

Man wearing brown sweater is talking with paramedics at home.Pavel Danilyuk , Pexels

47. How Heartbreaking

I work in clinical research at a hospital. Basically, for patients who have cancer but don’t have other standard-of-care options, clinical trials, or “experimental treatment”, are a viable option for many. Some people have a negative view of research, but it’s highly regulated and not as scary as it sounds. 

Anyway, we went through the consent form with this one patient who had a history of substance use. We don’t know everything about this new medication, but one thing we DO know is that using illicit substances while taking this medication will make your heart “explode," in layman’s terms. 

This patient “promised” they were off the sauce and that they “totally wouldn’t do anything while they’re on the trial”. Two weeks later, they relapsed, and well…You can figure out the rest of the story.

Prescription bottle with pills on the table.Kevin Bidwell, Pexels

48. Lying About That?

I have a friend who I took to the ER because he was upset a girl he liked rejected him. He was a little unsteady, and we were at a party. He punched the brick wall in the basement and gashed his hand open. I was surprised he didn’t break anything. 

Anyway, because he was drinking and I wasn’t, I drove him. I figured it would be an uninteresting visit, but then he straight up lied to the ER nurses about his hand saying he got in a fight and he cut his knuckles open on the teeth of the other guy. I just shook my head with disbelief and they explained to him how he’d need antibiotics now.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesPexels

49. The Small Mass

A middle-aged man enters ER in sweatpants. He worked as an accountant but was currently unemployed. He tells me that a urologist had diagnosed him with inflammation of his epididymis three years earlier, but he hadn't followed through on the treatment, and that he now wanted to get things taken care of.

During the physical exam, I see a grapefruit-sized mass. It was not subtle in any way. I call in urology and order a CT scan. I tell the guy that this isn't inflammation, it is a tumor and we need to do more tests to find out what type of tumor. He stops me and tells me he didn't understand what I had said, could I please repeat it. 

Then he pulls out a pad of paper and writes down my exact words and sits there staring at the words for a few minutes. I just felt sorry for the guy.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesFreepik, freepik

50. Wrestling With Logic

My brother did a rotation in an ER before med school. Paramedics brought in a man with a lacerated neck. He was inebriated and fell into a fish tank. His equally inebriated buddies called 9-1-1. 

When the paramedics arrived, they realized his friends had put a very tight tourniquet around his neck to stop the bleeding. It turned out that the guy and his buddies had been playing a boozy game of WWE. He had a two-inch glass shard stuck in his head in addition to the neck laceration, but the dude came into the ER with no idea the glass was there. 

Four different firefighters had to hold him down as he screamed prejudiced remarks at the female doctor. My brother said that when they removed the glass, blood shot out about 10 feet in the air. My brother, at that point, silently “noped” the heck out of medicine. 

He went on to attend Berklee Music School and is living his best life as a musical producer and engineer, and is not arguing with rednecks about whether or not there is a glass shard in their head….

A doctor is resting on the sofa,looking tired.Cedric Fauntleroy , Pexels

51. Shear Stupidity

I’m an ER nurse with seven years of experience. The list of dumb things I’ve seen is nearly endless. People coming in with massive burns because they smoked in bed is not as rare as you’d think. But the one that got me the most was a guy who came in for chest pain and fatigue. An EKG revealed he was having a really bad heart attack.

We activated the cath lab for emergency stents to hopefully save the guy’s life. They almost always access the patient through the groin for the procedure, so one of our jobs in the ER is to shave the patient’s groin to prep them for the cath lab. We got the clippers out, as we don’t use actual razors anymore, and informed the guy we needed to shave him. This is when things got annoying. 

He refused. No problem, we figured we woul adjust let the cath lab do it once he’s knocked out. Nope, the guy refuses to sign the consent for the stents because he doesn’t want his downstairs shaved.

After trying to educate him, pleading with him, and contacting every goddang lawyer the hospital had, the guy signed himself out of AMA and went home.

He would rather die than have his curlies shaved. We looked up his address, and we weren’t the closest hospital to him, so if he passed at home, the medics would have to take him to a different hospital. I doubt he survived the day.

Doctor is preparing for surgery in , Pexels

52. Paws For Thought

I’m a vet. A few years ago, I had a client bring his young cat in complaining of lethargy. Besides being a bit underweight, the physical exam was unremarkable, so I asked more questions about the cat’s diet. 

Me: “What do you feed the cat?" 

Owner: “I feed him [online trendy raw food brand]”.

Me: “How is his appetite? Does he finish what you feed him?"

Owner: “Yes, he always eats everything”.

Me: “How much do you feed him?"

Owner: “Half a cup”. 

Me: “Once or twice daily?" 

What he said next absolutely floored me. 

Owner: “Once every three or four days”. 

Me: “…You only feed your cat twice a week?"

Owner: "I believe in a more natural feeding approach, and based on my research, that’s how often cats eat in the wild”.

This owner was slowly starving his cat into oblivion based on some cockamamie idea he’d made up while watching National Geographic. I had to explain to him that domestic cats are not tigers and that small wildcats eat 10–20 small meals daily. Surprise, surprise, the cat’s lethargy and weight improved with regular feeding.

Cat is seating on the table and being checked by woman vet.Gustavo Fring, Pexels

53. A Stupid Challenge

A few years ago, I had one kid, maybe 16 or 17, who evidently had heard of a challenge where you can fully insert a lightbulb into your mouth, but when you try to pull it out, you can’t open your jaw wide enough and the bulb shatters inside. 

Well after about three hours of picking glass from out of his mouth, I asked what went down, and he just would not admit that he put the lightbulb in his mouth.

His main story was that his friend must have slipped it in his mouth when he was sleeping and punched him in the jaw, however upon talking to this friend in another room, he confessed that the boy had tried to beat the challenge, his friend even showed me videos of other people trying it. 

So, I go back in with the patient and bring his guardians in, in this case an aunt and uncle, and explained the whole lightbulb challenge without giving his friend up. When asked what I was talking about, I explained and said there are many videos on the internet about the exact thing I’m talking about. 

They also revealed that he had tried several dangerous stunts and challenges before, but even still the stubborn teenager wouldn’t admit a thing; he was adamant that he had absolutely no part in his injury and that everyone was out to get him.

It’s just crazy to me how arrogant and thick-headed some people will get, they’ll do anything before admitting to doing something that stupid and short-sighted.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesPexels

54. Just Practice

I’m a med student. I went to see a patient for my practice physical. These are all volunteers and we don’t get charts or anything, just a slip of paper with their name and chief complaint. I walk into the room and this older gentleman is holding his cup of coffee and didn’t shake my hand, which threw me off guard. 

Then I noticed one of his hands was much weaker and kind of scrunched up and he didn’t move it. So, I asked him about it and he was like, “Nah it’s fine. See?” and proceeded to move it like a 1/2 inch. It clearly was not fine. 

I’m sweating now, because these are mainly just opportunities to talk with patients and they’re supposed to be a breeze, but this guy looks like he had a stroke and had no idea. Turns out he was just messing with me, but I was ready to call in a real doctor because I was freaking the heck out!

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesFreepik, prostooleh

55. Always Double-Check

I once heard a story about a particular patient receiving radiation therapy. It was impressed upon her that she couldn’t miss her fractions of radiotherapy, even if she were busy, so she needed to inform us if she really couldn’t make the appointment. Well, one day, she couldn’t make it. But instead of just informing us, she sent her twin sister to receive the radiation therapy in her place.

Of course, the twin answered yes to all the ID questions and had the same birthday, etc. She was only found out when the radiographers had trouble matching her to the CT. The CT was of a person who had undergone a mastectomy, while this “patient” still had both her mammaries. This story, many years later, is still told to new staff during training to reiterate the importance of ensuring correct identification.

You would be stunned by the number of people who try to skip the queue. The number isn’t high. But it isn’t zero.

Woman in white sweater is talking with a doctor.MART PRODUCTION, Pexels

56. It Took Some Arm Twisting

I work in orthopedic rehab. I had a patient with a common fracture of the wrist that a doctor sent over because she was inexplicably getting stiffer and stiffer. I spent 17 sessions with her one on one, 40ish minutes each. But nothing I did worked. For whatever reason, instead of just bending her wrist, she would contort her entire body.

She was married, raised kids, had a career, and was a seemingly functional adult. I tried everything to get her to actively use her muscles to move her wrist. I put her in front of a mirror, filmed videos of myself doing the exercise or her doing it, and tried to get her to spot the difference between moving your shoulder versus moving your wrist.

The last time I saw her, I even strapped her arm to a chair, and she still didn’t understand that she should’ve only been trying to move her wrist. I will never understand it.

Female doctor touches patient's shoulder and tells her good news.Studio Romantic, Shutterstock

57. There Was No Sugarcoating It

I work at a vet clinic. We get a lot of this sort of thing, oftentimes with diabetic patients. One of the worst I’ve seen was an older owner come in with an extremely overweight, diabetic dog. The owner says the dog has been slow, tires easily, and has been “flopping around”, which is odd for her. The doctor checks the dog’s blood glucose, and it is so high it is literally off the charts. 

Normal blood glucose for a dog is around 100 or so. The dog's reading was shocking—it was beyond 1000. We asked the owner how it got so high. Was she eating? She was because she was obese. Were you giving her the insulin? The owner then proceeds to say that they think she’s probably fine without it since she’s a “strong and hardy dog”.

Ma’am, your nine-year-old 80-pound Dalmatian is currently half-alive on the floor because you don’t give her insulin. How they kept that poor dog alive for that long was astounding.

A Dalmatian dog is looking sad.Jozef Fehér , Pexels

58. Seeing The Problem

Optician here. A few days ago, a man called asking if he could see an optometrist asap. I told him we had no spots left and asked him what seemed to be the problem. He told me he felt he had an eye infection and it's been four days since he can't see properly from his left eye. Sometimes, clients can complain of overtearing or swollen eyelids but no...

He told me part of his field of vision was off for the past four days. We have indicators that tell us if we are dealing with an emergency worthy of being sent directly to the hospital for emergency intervention from the ophthalmology department and this was clearly it. I told him he has to go to the emergency room. NOW. He tells me he has a busy shift at work and is a supervisor.

I told him again to go to the hospital ASAP and to take it seriously. He tells me that he can't because his day will be scrapped. I told him to stop putting work over health and that this needed to be dealt with now. He still argues with me and tells me that he doesn't feel like waiting in the emergency room for hours. I insist that he must go. He then tells me he'll go after his day's shift!

I tell him to cut it out and GO!! He then asks me if it's an emergency and to tell him what he has. Given that I'm not allowed to give any diagnosis by the phone I told him to hurry to the hospital. He told me he would and I'm pretty sure he stuck to his plan of finishing the day. Retinal detachment can usually be treated if noticed quickly.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesPexels

59. I Want To Stay

I’m not a doctor, but I work in the hospital. We have a regular at the ER. She comes every single day - she figured out that we can’t send her home before a doctor examines her if she complains of trouble breathing or chest pains. So she always does this. No ward wants her to come there and no doctor wants to be responsible.

She’s super manipulative, treats the nurses horribly, and is very demanding. She is an addict and usually wants more illicit substances and someone to take care of her like she’s at the Hilton. Her goal every visit is to get admitted. She succeeded a few days ago when there was some issue with her colostomy bag. 

To avoid being sent home, she smeared poop in her IV trying to cause sepsis, just to stay at the ward.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesGetty Images

60. Are You Kidding Me!?

When I was an intern posted in the obstetric department, I saw a 42-year-old pregnant woman who came for an antenatal checkup. This was her seventh pregnancy, and she had only one living child. So she had five pregnancies previously, which failed (three spontaneous abortions and two stillbirths). 

The sixth one had been high-risk too, and she’d needed to get a cervical cerclage done (they stitch the cervix because it is too weak to hold a baby in until term).

When the OBGYN asked her why she would put herself through pregnancy again instead of being content with her daughter, she replied, “My in-laws want us to have at least two children”. It was the biggest Pikachu-face moment of my life.

Young pregnant woman is laying on bed with female doctor in hospital.MART PRODUCTION, Pexels

61. Jesus Took The Wheel Years Ago

I’m an optometrist. I had an elderly patient come in surrounded by concerned family members because the patient ran over one of those pop-up tents on the side of the road that the telephone engineers use to protect themselves from the rain. Luckily no one was hurt as the worker was on lunch. 

Worried as to how the elderly driver missed seeing a large, red, and white tent in the middle of the day, it was then that the elderly relative admitted to having spent the last three years driving from memory.

Caring nurse holding mature patient hand at meeting in hospital.fizkes, Shutterstock

62. Leaving Out The Details

Massage therapist here. During an intake, I always ask, "Any medications, surgeries, or medical conditions?" Even when they have a full detailed paper intake, I always ask this question verbally as well. It's amazing what people won't tell me, but this one guy stood out... 

I get to his lower back and there's a medical device on the table. It scared the heck out of me, I just was not expecting to bump into something. I asked him what it was, and he said "Oh that's my insulin pump, it doesn't matter". 

Not only did you not tell me you have diabetes, which absolutely matters, but you have a pump attached to your body and on my table?! I 100% needed to know that! I'm touching your whole body, yes I need to know if things are inserted into it!

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesPexels

63. The Colostomy Bag

I work with people occasionally in a hospital, and one day, I was sent to pick up a woman for transport to a different facility and she was being treated a host of different things. She has complained of a lot of pain in the area where her colostomy bag was attached.  

Long story short, she was diagnosed with a host of things wrong with the stoma and the doctors were all guessing how she had gotten some of those complications. She eventually admitted to me and the rest of the room that men would pay extra money to make sweet love to the hole where her colostomy bag was attached. What??

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesPexels

64. A Snack For My Stomach

One patient will haunt me for the rest of my life. This 360lb woman was wheeled in complaining of severe stomach pain and itching. 

They took her in and started examining and asking questions; as she’s talking about the area that’s in pain, they lift up a heavy roll of fat and there were two twinkies squished in there all moldy and almost necrotic smelling, it was apparently there for nearly two months. Want to know what was inside those twinkies? Maggots.

There were hundreds of them. All of her pain was caused by the maggots trying to burrow into her necrotic skin. We believe she put the Twinkie there so they would eat the Twinkie and not her necrotic tissue. She denied that she put/left them there and “has never eaten a Twinkie in her life”. 

She kept going on and on about someone had stuffed them there while she was asleep.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesFreepik, jcomp

65. Trying Hard To Be Patient

I had a patient come to see me in the clinic on a Monday; everything was fine. By Tuesday morning, she’s on the hospital census with a pending consult for me. When I see her, she says she’s fine and doesn’t know why she was admitted. She then walked out of the clinic, called an ambulance from across the street, and got taken to a different hospital.

She reported her problems were uncontrolled, and nobody was taking her seriously. They transferred her back overnight because I don’t work at that other hospital. She then gets discharged Wednesday morning. On Friday morning, she is again back on the census with a pending consult. I go to see her, and once again, she says she’s fine, and she’s not sure why she’s there.

This time she had a friend pick her up from the hospital and drive her to a small outlying hospital without the services she needed. She walked into the ER and said she was in distress but that nobody was taking her seriously. Yet again, she gets admitted and transferred back to my hospital overnight. She gets discharged on Friday afternoon.

Sure as heck, she came back on Saturday morning. I asked her, “Why do you think you keep getting admitted to the hospital”? She has no clue. Completely baffled. I tell her it’s because she keeps going to hospitals and telling them she needs help. No lights come on. I ask her, “Why do you keep going to other hospitals”?

Finally, she tells me, “I didn’t know what else to do. My apartment is a complete mess. My caretaker won’t clean my apartment because I’m supposed to learn how to do it, and I just don’t want to do it”. Please note that she is not a ward of the state but still gets most of the services, like coaches, guardians, drivers, etc. 

So, I follow up with, “But why do you keep telling them that I’m not taking you seriously”? What she said next is forever burnt into my brain. “If I don’t, they just send me home in a cab”.

Doctor in white coat has consulting with older senior female patient in hospital.Ground Picture , Shutterstock

66. False Wisdom

I’m a dental nurse. My favorite story involved a 30-something-year-old woman who came in for a checkup at the low-cost emergency clinic I worked at. Her teeth were broken and almost black, and her gums were angry, swollen, bright red, and bleeding by just moving her tongue against them. She needed multiple scaling and hygienist appointments and a debridement. 

An X-ray showed she needed work on all but her wisdom teeth, and the results made me raise my eyebrows—she needed 10 fillings. She also needed root canals to try and save some teeth and extractions for, I think, three teeth or possibly more if the root canal treatment didn’t work. I explained everything and did the usual explanation of proper oral hygiene.

I then asked her if she had any questions, to which she said, “It’s okay if I lose this set of teeth; my others will come through”. The dentist and I just looked at each other, probably a lot longer than we should have. No words. I couldn’t think of anything to reply to that comment. I had a lot of weird and disgusting things happen at that clinic. I miss working there.

Woman seating on dentist chair with two dentists by her side.Cedric Fauntleroy , Pexels

67. When You Just Can’t Sulfa Fools

I’m a paramedic, and I had this call while working on a rural fire/EMS service. A call came in for an allergic reaction. I arrived at a rural farm and found the patient in the kitchen on the ground, wheezing. Her husband said she took sulfa, which she’s allergic to, and after grabbing her blood pressure, we hit her with epinephrine (which is the same as an EpiPen) and Benadryl.

Her breathing improved, and she started to be able to answer my questions. First, I confirmed her allergy by asking, “So, you’re allergic to sulfa”? The patient says, “Yeah”. I reply, “And you took sulfa”? Again, she goes, “Yeah”. So I asked, “Was it mislabeled or in the wrong bottle”? She answers me with a simple “No”. Okay…

Needing more information, I inquired, “Was it your husband’s prescription”? And unbelievably, she tells me, “No, it was for our horse”. Huh? Feeling a lot more confused, I respond, “Was...Wait, did you say a horse? You took sulfa prescribed for a horse”? She then clarifies, “Well, I only took half”. Sure, that makes it better.

Still trying to follow her logic, I guessed, “...You only took half because a horse is much larger than a person”? The patient confirms, “Yeah”. Uh-huh…I’m still not fully understanding, so I respond, “...Okay. Were you intentionally trying to hurt yourself”? And the patient indignantly answers, “No, of course not”. Exasperated now, I pressed, “But you know you’re allergic, right”?

And she goes, “Yeah. I just have a cold and thought it would help me breathe better”. I couldn’t believe it. Incredulously, I then summarized the situation back to her: “So you took horse sulfa—which you’re allergic to—because you had a cold and thought it would help your breathing”? “I took half a horse sulfa”, the patient corrected me. Good Lord.

I just responded, “Sorry, half. Gotchya. Let’s go to the hospital”.

Woman is laying in back of a paramedic van.Pavel Danilyuk, Pexels

68. The Cat Lady

I heard this one second hand in residency. A woman had a gangrenous toe that had to be amputated. When I say that it had to be amputated, that means that if it wasn't amputated she would get septic, so it really pretty much had to be amputated. Anyway, she kept refusing, and nobody could really figure out why.

Long story short, it turns out that she was concerned that if she had a surgery and had to stay in the hospital, then nobody would feed her cat, so she didn't want to do it and abandon her cat to starvation. Once this was clear, then they arranged a cat feeding service of some kind and she did the surgery. That's how I remember the story, anyway.

Obviously, she wasn't thinking it through too well, because if anything serious happened, she wouldn't be able to feed her cat anyways...

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesPexels

69. What A Plan

A 16-year-old came in with their mum with lacerations all over his face and shoulder. He told me somebody threw a bottle at him from a moving car. I was treating the cuts and stitching his chin and he quietly mentioned his arm hurt. I took his jumper off and his arm was purple and swollen. I asked what really happened.

He was drinking with his mates in a park and they forced his hand into a piece of PVC pipe to use as a baseball bat to hit bottles. They hit a few bottles and he cut his face in spite of the precautionary baseball cap and face mask. He cut his face and wanted to take his arm out of the pipe. It was stuck. 

His friend had the great idea of backing his Suzuki Swift ever so delicately over the pipe to crack it. Except he reversed over his arm. They got the pipe off though, which probably also stopped his forearm from popping like a sausage.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesFreepik,freepik

70. Worse Than He Thought

I’m a paramedic rather than a doctor, but definitely had some fun times. I once lifted a joyrider out of a garden who'd stolen and crashed a bike, tried to run away, then collapsed after hopping over the nearest wall when he realized he was actually quite messed up. Lying there in someone's flowerbed, he had a really nice handlebar-shaped bruise on his pelvis.

As we're wheeling him away from the scene, with the assistance of some officers, I ask him how fast the bike was going when he came off. "What bike?" he replied.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesPexels

71. This Patient Was In A Jam

I’m a paramedic and was called out for a stroke. The man was having a stroke; upon doing a stroke screen, it looked like the patient had something large in his mouth. Thinking maybe this guy had some sort of oropharyngeal cancer or mass, I asked his wife if this was indeed the case, and she looked at me with a very puzzled look.

She said no, and then I asked, “What is in his mouth”? His wife then says it’s a peanut butter and jelly sandwich that she shoved in there. When her husband’s symptoms started, she thought it was just that his blood glucose was low, so she tried to force-feed this poor man an entire sandwich before she called 9-1-1. Ah, job security.

Sick black man is on the stretcher in hospital van.RDNE Stock project , Pexels

72. Find My Phone!

One of my coworkers was a student nurse on our surgery floor at the time. She had this patient who called out saying the student nurse had stolen or lost her phone. She kept insisting and it got to the point that risk management was getting ready to be called because she was going to file a complaint. 

Student nurse swears she never even saw a phone, and didn’t know the lady even had one. Several of us went in and tore the room apart looking for it. As patients often lose belongings in their bed linens, we began taking each blanket/sheet off and shaking them out. 

At this point, the lady refuses to get out of her bed so we can take off the bottom sheet and check between the mattress and bed. She suddenly is too weak to stand. So, we assume the standard position used to roll patients so a bed can be made while the patient is still in it.

The patient is first rolled to the left side where she’s facing the accused student nurse. Another coworker was on the side where the woman’s back is facing and she happens to hear a phone start ringing. We think it must be under the woman or under her mattress. 

Still can’t locate it and all the while she’s screaming her head off about how this hospital is going to buy her a new phone and she “ain’t accepting no cheapo generic one either". Upon rolling her to the other side, the student nurse sees a “black dot” on her bottom. Yep, you guessed it. 

Her cell phone was shoved there and the ringing we heard was her phone. No one says a word except “Oh look we found your phone". She swears it’s not hers and that we planted it there so we wouldn’t have to buy her a new one. It was a flip phone, and the black dot was the pull-out antenna.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesShutterstock

73. Shush!

A pet rat bit my patient. But I only found out from their partner confronting them in front of the team, asking if the patient had told us about the rat bite. The patient looked like they wanted to hush their partner. I got to update the rat-bite fever and talk with the micro people. 

It wasn't actually the bite that was the problem, and the broad-spectrum antibiotics would have covered it, but was an interesting experience.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesPexels

74. The Mind’s Power

My friend is a psychologist, and she had a patient refuse to admit she wasn't pregnant. That's right, wasn't. My friend was working in a very poor area of Venezuela, and this woman hadn't had any medical treatment or formal confirmation of her pregnancy. 

Venezuelan women don't consider themselves adults until they are mothers, so this young woman wanted to be a mother so badly she convinced herself she was pregnant. It got to the point she had an actual psychological pregnancy that caused her to genuinely swell, getting what looked like a third-trimester belly. 

My friend tells me that when she finally got through to her, her belly started deflating like a balloon. The mind is an amazing thing.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesFlickr, World Bank Photo Collection

75. A Rash Decision

I’m a pharmacist. This story comes to mind, although I’m sure there are plenty more I’m not remembering. A woman came in, claiming that her medication was making her vomit. She said she couldn’t remember what it was called. So, I looked up her profile, but there was nothing recent, just some one-off antibiotics and an anti-fungal from almost a year ago.

I asked her if her medication was over the counter, and she said that it was and pointed me to the Monistat cream. I thought it was incredibly strange that a cream meant for “lady parts” had made her vomit, so I asked her how she had been using it. That’s when I learned the disgusting truth—much to my surprise, she’d been taking it by mouth. 

She explained that she would fill the plunger with the cream, shoot it to the back of her throat, and swallow it so she wouldn’t taste it as much as putting it directly on her tongue and swallowing.

A person is holding a white cream in her hand.Mike Murray, Pexels

76. What A Meathead

I’m a rural ER doctor. A 35-year-old female walked in with right-sided jaw/neck swelling. She says, “I think it happened because I ate some meat yesterday that my body is reacting to…” Then suddenly, 10 minutes later: “Oh yeah, and I accidentally swallowed a bee, and it stung me in my mouth right before this happened. Sorry, I forgot to mention that”.

Female doctor is check in female patient.Antoni Shkraba, Pexels

77. It Ultimately Wasn’t Very Fun-Knee

I overheard a conversation between a nurse, a doctor, and a patient in the ER. They were trying to figure out whether the patient was very stupid or had a head injury. It was both hilarious and sad. He kept telling them that he was there for a hurt leg, but he couldn’t explain why his leg was hurt, how it was hurt, or how he got there—nearly anything.

I heard them talking in a hallway to each other. The nurse was convinced the patient hit his head. The doctor, without skipping a beat, dropped his unexpected diagnosis: “No, he is just an idiot". It turned out the doctor was right. They got ahold of the guy’s wife. 

She told them in the hallway he’s always this dumb, and if she left him, he would get lost in his own house and starve. It sounded like the patient’s leg was visibly injured or swollen. But when asked what happened or how it felt, he gave nonsensical idiot answers. 

He wasn’t slurring, but answering in a regular idiot voice, saying things like, “It feels hurt”, and “I was talking to Jimmy, and we were doing our usual work, and my leg hurts”. The doctor would ask, “Did something happen? What is the work”? But the patient kept responding, “Something always happens; you know how it goes”, or “I just want my leg fixed”.

Man is seating on hospital bed.Tima Miroshnichenko , Pexels

78. A Couples Conundrum

This happened when I was still in med school. One time I was doing my gynecology rotations, my doctor and I encountered a 37 y/o female accompanied by her husband complaining of lower abdominal pain. After having a look at it, the cause was pretty obvious. 

There was a fist-size bruise on her left ischial spine (the rim of her hip) and from the looks of it, black, deep blue and a dark brown diffusely spread out, it was pretty fresh; not older than a day or two. I had a literal brain spasm and was about to accuse the husband when my eyes met with my doctor’s. 

Instantly, I knew she was more qualified to handle the situation than I was and I decided to keep my mouth shut. She proceeded to examine the area, asking basic questions while carefully palpating the area. She then asked her patient to undress so that she could do an overall assessment and to get a better picture of what she was dealing with.

After some initial reluctance from the wife, her husband managed to convince her that it was in her best interest to let the doctor examine “everything”. My jaw dropped. There were bruises all over her upper abdomen, stomach, back, inner thighs, and buttocks. Her chest was practically lumps of red inflamed tissue with blotches of bluish-black. 

Every part of her body that could be covered with clothes was covered in bruises in different stages of healing. I have seen my fair share of gruesome things, but this one image has stuck with me. My doctor was also noticeably disturbed by what she saw and asked how she managed to injure herself. 

To my astonishment, the woman claims she slipped from the stairs and fell down a flight of stairs and hit herself on the handrail. This woman had tracks along her back which were definitely inflicted by a belt of sorts. And even after a good 20 minutes of going over most of her injuries, she wasn’t ready to claim otherwise. 

Meanwhile, her husband grew more and more restless and there was a worried look on his face. The doctor then asked both me and the husband to leave, as she needed to do a gynecological examination and she needed to do it alone with the patient.

If you ever did your rotations in medschool, you know that doctors almost never ask students to leave as we somewhat become a part of the ambiance. Always there and learning. I instantly realized she needed to establish trust with the patient one-on-one and needed the patient to be comfortable. 

I head out along with the husband, and we both stood on opposing ends of the corridor. The husband, now visually disturbed, seemed to want to talk to me. I thought to myself “Serves him right". After about five minutes of awkward silence, he finally decides to move closer to me and says “Hey! Can I speak with you for a minute?” 

I am now obviously angry at the guy and throw a quick “what?” glance at him. “Can I say something to you that you can pass along to the doctor? I want to tell you what really happened. I just want my wife to be healthy". Now he had my attention. 

He proceeded to tell me about their marriage of 11 years and how happy they were until about six months ago. That's when the truth came out. I could barely believe it. He told me that she had taken a liking to getting rough in bed and had been increasingly asking him to inflict pain on her in various ways.

When he was outright against it, she would insult him and his parents and everything he held dear, sometimes for days at end, until he literally couldn’t put up with it and gave in to her demands. About two months ago, when he said he wanted a divorce as he was done with her, she showed him pictures of her bruises on her phone and threatened to sue him and report him.

She had effectively trapped him. But last night was worse than every other time. She apparently forced him to hit her multiple times over and over until she almost passed out. He asked for what we could do to help her heal. I looked into his eyes. He was crying where he stood. I went in and pulled my doctor aside and told her the entire story.

They did an ultrasound and found out that she had a reputed ovarian cyst and that she needed emergency surgery. She underwent an oophorectomy and the couple were referred to a psychiatrist and a couple's therapist. I don’t know what happened to them after that but I sure hope the guy got out of that relationship.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesFreepik, freepik

79. A Complete Betrayal

I'm a CT tech and I was to scan a woman's abdomen for belly pain. She and her girlfriend were there. I have to do a pregnancy test. I always have to have one done because I can't radiate a fetus. I even ask nuns, so there are no exceptions. She denies up and down she's pregnant, and then, after the test I did, it said she was. 

She denied it and demanded a blood test, since she was a lesbian and never slept with men. Well, the blood test came back positive also. The argument that ensued was biblical. She was arguing with her girlfriend and the nurses and the doctor. I never ended up scanning her and they chalked up her pain to her being pregnant. 

The look on her girlfriend's face when I said it came back positive was one that I will never forget.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesPexels

80. It’s Not Mine!!

I work in a big, busy hospital. We had a 20ish-year-old obese woman come in complaining of severe abdominal pain. Before she was even examined it became clear that she was about to give birth. Side note- my hospital does not have labor and delivery; that is at our other campus a couple of miles away. This woman proceeded to give birth to a full-term 8lb healthy boy in our ER and denied that she was pregnant.

But here's the psychotic part: She denied that the baby was hers. The placenta was still in her umbilical cord not cut, the Dr said "it's a boy!" and she said "that's not my baby!" Mmmmmmmkay. Needless to say, psych was called along with a team from the other hospital to take the baby over to their campus. I often wonder about that baby, and hope he is doing ok... Hopefully the mom put him up for adoption and he ended up with some great parents.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesFreepik, DCStudio

81. Is It Covid?

A six-year-old girl arrived at the rural hospital I was in because of shortness of breath. As it was during mid-2021, we were thinking it could be COVID, so after the first assessment and stabilization, a chest x-ray was taken. She had a 50-cent coin in her airway. When we asked the mother, she completely denied the fact that she had swallowed a coin, despite the fact we were showing her the X-ray. I felt like I was going crazy.

After a while, the grandad of the girl arrived and finally told us that indeed she had swallowed a coin but it was six months ago, and in the end, they didn't bother to check what had happened to it.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesFreepik,DCStudio

82. You’re His Mom

A mom directly lied to us about her 12-year-old’s pre-ENT surgery. We always confirm with the patient and legal guardians the pre-surgery checkup: Name, age/date of birth, any past medical history, common medication, medication taken in the last 24 hours, the surgery, and the last time they ate or drank anything.

The thing is, in the last item of the checklist, the mom lied. Her answer was "No he didn't eat anything since yesterday", and the kid confirmed. Note that it was 4 PM.

The surgery went well with no problems. When comes the time to remove the tube...the kid starts vomiting tons of rice and beans... When I say tons, I mean at least 1kg of said food. It was like nothing I've ever seen. The kid aspirates part of the food against our best efforts, and we do everything we can. 

Everything ends up ok, the kid survives, there were no further complications, and he recovered to full health in only two days. When confronted about the lie, and explained how her son could have been seriously hurt, the mom said, "What could I do?! He was hungry and eats like a bull! Who am I to say he can't?" 

We all lost our patience and just said "YOU’RE HIS MOM!!!”

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesFreepik, gpointstudio

83. A Great Actress

We had this lady that came into the ER at least once per month usually with chest pain. She had seen multiple specialists and had her heart/lungs/GI system examined in almost every conceivable way. One night she comes in with sudden onset blindness. Not her first time with this complaint either. Last time, she got a trip to the retina specialist.

When I examine her I walk around her bed and she tells her friend to get her feet off the chair so I can get by. She plays it off supercool by adding, “If you have your feet up like you always do”. I don't think she noticed my eye roll. Then, the neuro exam. I have her touch her nose, then touch my finger. 

Her idea of how a blind person would perform this exam is to touch her nose then wobble her hand from side to side as she touched the end of my finger. She also made near-constant eye contact as we talked. I would ask a question and start moving while she talked and she would follow my eye perfectly. 

She was extremely relieved to find out she had conversion disorder and that her sight would be back soon.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesPexels

84. The Same Thing Again?

This was one of my favorite things that I wrote during my first year out of medical school:

“Please note patient has stated multiple times that he wants to leave and would leave against medical advice. He asked multiple times whether he could eat, stating he is hungry. Explained to patient that we would like to start a full liquid diet first and if he tolerated it well, would transition to regular foods". But that was just the start.

I continued, “The patient ordered Chinese food delivery instead. Then, patient was complaining of a headache. Was given Tylenol for the headache. Patient stated that this did not help him. His sister at bedside went to the nearby pharmacy and bought aspirin. Sister did ask whether she could give him aspirin and she was told not to give it to the patient. She supposedly did not". And the cherry on top?

The patient had a catastrophic GI bleed...from taking too much aspirin.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesShutterstock

85. A Corny Problem

Part of my job is dealing with medical records. My favorite part is when you are reading the doctors' notes and you can tell they are fed up with the patients from their tone. I can remember one that made me laugh out loud.

“Patient in for routine colonoscopy, asked if solids consumed in 24 hrs prior, patient confirms no. In process of procedure, several dozen kernels of corn are discovered in colon and cannot continue. Patient specifically instructed not to consume corn beforehand as this happened during prior visit".

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesPicryl

86. I Have No Idea

I had a lady tell me she had no idea how she got a rash she had on her face. I left the room, gave a report to the MD, and when I walked back in with the doctor, she looked at me and said “I didn’t think you’d be coming back in the room”. She then proceeded to confess her dark secret. 

She’d been cheating on her husband and thought she had caught a disease. She had not.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesShutterstock

87. An Unfortunate Cut

My dad is a physician and has a million funny stories. He told me this one from a few decades ago. He had a patient come into the ER with a towel over his groin, covered in blood. Claimed he was cutting vegetables in his kitchen and slipped. Dad takes a look and the guy is butchered down there. It was like a horror movie. 

I had to call a urologist in the middle of the night to consult. Guy eventually confesses to trying to give himself a circumcision because he didn't want to pay the $200 it would have cost. The urologist was able to help save him, but it cost a lot more than $200 for emergency surgery.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesFlickr, U.S. Army Southern European Task Force, Africa

88. Now, He’s Gonorrhea-Valuate All His Conditions…

I worked in ED for 10 years. Every day. Every day people come in, and it shocks you how they’ve managed to stay alive this long. One of the worst was when we had a guy come in. He was a twin. He told us he needed to get checked for STDs because his sister just got one. 

We, of course, had to ask if he’d had intimate relations with her. His response shocked me. He said no, but they were twins, so whatever she has, so does he. After a collective sigh of relief that this wasn’t some weird Alabama, your-my-sister scenario, we had to educate him on how that’s not how it worked at all.

Man is talking with female doctor in her office.cottonbro studio, Pexels

89. It Was An Arm of Intervention

I got told to go introduce myself to a patient to get vitals, history, and more info on their chief complaint, before starting an IV and drawing blood for labs. She came in for arm pain, and it looked like she had a nasty bug bite on her arm. Her story was crazy.

She said she was an exotic dancer, and her Adderall prescription wasn’t doing the trick. So, she had an idea of how to make it more potent. She heard from a friend that if you crush it up, suspend it in water, and then inject it, it would be more effective. Except she used tap water to dissolve the Adderall before she injected it. 

This ended up causing a huge abscess and infection at the site of injection. She ended up losing her arm at the elbow...So now she’s a one-armed exotic dancer.

Woman is laying at hospital bed looking sad.RDNE Stock project , Pexels

90. A Hairy Situation

I’m a nurse. We had a patient come into the operating room for brain surgery. Probably a mid-50s guy with a nice head of light brown hair. Before a patient comes into the actual OR, we ask them a series of questions, including whether they have any implants, jewelry, non-hospital clothes on, etc. The guy says no to all the questions.

After the patient gets put to sleep, the surgeon grabbed his hair to start shaving it off (because you know, brain surgery), and he got a horrifying surprise: All his hair peeled off because he was wearing a wig and didn’t tell us! We almost shaved his hairpiece because he wouldn’t admit to anyone that he was wearing one.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesShutterstock

91. A Greasy Liar

I’m a medical school student. Not a big deal, but a patient lied to me about what she had eaten. She was obviously having some problem with her gallbladder. Typically, this pain can be caused by greasy food. So, I asked the patient what she had eaten before she got this pain. Patient said she only ate a salad with very little ranch, that’s it.

I even explained how greasy food can cause this pain but she’s adamant she only ate a salad. Anyways, I report back to my attending and we see her together. The attending asked her what she ate. Her response made me want to scream. The patient said salad...then adds she also ate a burger! It wouldn’t have changed the plan but why lie??

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesPexels

92. This Is How The Elderly Get Their Wrinkles

I’m a paramedic. I had an elderly woman complain that her mouth was dry and she felt a bit dizzy climbing the stairs earlier. So I go through the whole rigamarole of getting a medical history, vitals, and more detail on her symptoms. Then I asked her what she’s had to drink today. Her answer? A cup of tea—ten hours ago. I asked, “Any water?" She says no. 

Guess what fixed it within five minutes.

Woman is talking with a doctor.freepik , Freepik

93. Connect The Dots

There's a story my father, who was a doctor, always loved to share. It was about a woman who claimed she had chickenpox, as she had some red dots on her face and body. After doing a thorough physical exam, he prescribed a red marker so she could "finish the job".

Patients Faking ItShutterstock

94. Mr. Hot Shot

I had a buddy who was an EMT, and he was called out to a location for a GSW. What happened was a father was mowing his lawn when he accidentally touched a part of the mower near the engine and burned his hand. He got mad at the lawnmower, pulled out his pistol, and shot it. The shot ricocheted and hit his son in the leg.

Elder man driving a lawn mower vehicle in his yard.hermaion , Pexels

95. Follow My Instructions!

I'm a pediatric dentist, and this one throws me for a loop every time I share it. When I sedate kids, they aren't allowed to eat for eight hours before, so I always ask if they had anything to eat or drink in the morning. Parents never want to admit their kid ate or drank, even when I remind them it's very important because if they vomit and aspirate, they could die.

Often, they try to minimize it and say it was just a few bites, but one kid walked in eating a bag of Cheetos at reception and then the parent insisted to me that they hadn't eaten. Yeah, I'm 100% not sedating your child today.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesPexels

96. I Can’t Move My Legs

One dude lied about being paralyzed after a lumbar puncture. I got a call from a nurse telling me that the patient says he can’t move his legs following a lumbar puncture. I called the team that did the procedure; they assured me there was no indication of this sort of injury happening during the procedure, but agreed with my plan to get an urgent MRI.

I go to examine him, and the nurse says she thinks he moved one of his feet. Next thing I know he says he can actually move his legs again, but they are feeling weird. Then this weird feeling turns into intense pain. Then comes the kicker: He asks for intravenous narcotics. 

I tell him no because this story makes no sense. By God, it was a miracle I tell you when this man walked himself right out of the hospital after I refused the narcotics. Also, the MRI was normal.

These Patients Told The Dumbest LiesPexels

97. Life Was Squeezing By

My mom was an ER nurse right after college. A family got in a car crash, and there weren’t any serious injuries; they were just taken to the ER to be assessed. They had a baby, and my mom was asking them questions about its health, etc. When she asked what the baby was being fed, the mom said, “Juice”. Just juice. 

She had heard that at six months, you could start feeding the baby juice, not realizing it was juice, in addition to baby food or milk. This woman had been feeding her baby ONLY JUICE for months.

Nurses' Infuriating PatientsShutterstock

98. Feeling A Bit Heavy

Emergency radiologist here. I see plenty of people presenting with understated symptoms that turn out to be some mind-blowing advanced disease—but one devastating case sticks out. There was a four-year-old boy who presented with a rigid abdomen for a few months. 

The family was told by their pediatrician it was constipation months ago but his parents never followed up when it didn't resolve. When I imaged his abdomen, I found his entire liver was replaced with a mass consistent with hepatoblastoma. I asked the parents why they waited so long to work it up. 

They said they were satisfied with the diagnosis of constipation!

These Patients Should’ve Been WAY More WorriedPicryl

99. He Was Dumb, Warts, And All

I was a Navy hospital corpsman. I was on deployment in Japan with a Marine artillery battalion. On a relaxing weekend off, I was awakened around 3 AM to a POUNDING on my barracks room door. It was common practice for my Marines to come to find me should they require medical aid on our off time.

Aggravated by being rousted awake, I opened the door to find one of my jarheads standing there. My jaw DROPPED. His eyes were glassy and bloodshot, and he was completely sloshed, without a stitch of clothing, with the exception of the red hand towel he was covering up his manhood with.

He said, "Doc! Please help, I'm scared, and it won't stop". After a very brief exam, the problem was obvious. The red towel was actually white but had become soaked through with blood. This young man had contracted a case of genital warts a long time before that night. Embarrassed to come to see us about it and thinking he would be in trouble, he kept it a secret.

Naturally, with enough time, his case worsened and grew, spreading over a larger area of his groin and clustering as this condition does. Warts are also very vascular, so they bleed easily and profusely. Having filled himself with liquid courage, this young Marine took it upon himself to apply a little home treatment.

He sat in the buff on the edge of the tub and went to work on himself to remove his many genital warts. His tool of choice was a pair of nail clippers. Blood was draining down the side of the tub before he got to the point he became desperate enough to reach out. I wrapped a blanket around him and took him to our battalion aid station (BAS) just like that.

Dumb PatientsShutterstock

100. Hunger Pains

My patient was a three-year-old who needed surgery on her tonsils and adenoids. The day before the procedure, I told her father, "Don't let her eat or drink anything after midnight”. While I was intubating the girl the next morning, she vomited scrambled eggs, causing her to aspirate them into her lungs. Then her heart stopped.

I did chest compressions on her for 25 minutes. We got her back, aborted the surgery, and transferred her to the pediatric ICU on a ventilator. Her father's response made me want to scream: "She said she was hungry. I thought you were being too hard on her. It must have been something you did to her". Sure, blame me for your inability to follow a simple direction. Idiot.

Rude WaiterPxhere

Sources: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7,

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