Interns in any hospital are, according to the patients, modern day vampires. They come to you every other morning (or every morning if you are unlucky to be a diabetic, have kidney failure or some disease which wasn’t enough of a headache for you by itself) armed with a swab, syringe and a needle and suck the blood from your veins. Patients’ reactions to this painful rituals are different…
Some scream, shout or make any sort of sound a person in pain would (blood collection is a slightly painful procedure..however when done repeatedly the site too gets tender and the procedure a more traumatic and painful one. Lack of skill on the part of some just adds to the woes)
Some complain….”You will finish all the blood in my body…..” or “What do you do with so much blood?”…..I prefer ignoring these types
Some like to ask why the blood is being taken . These are the ones with some basic idea about their disease or the ones who want to pacify their minds with “This is being done for my good”. To them you explain in the little time you have ‘Kidney kaa tapaas– renal function test’ or ‘Liver ki jaanch–liver function test’ or ‘HIV ki jaanch’ and so on..in simple short words. (Interns are always short of time…..too many collections, shortage of equipments and the rush to arrange for more, or just in a plain hurry to scoot home or to the library)
So once I had to collect the sample of a lady who was posted for a ‘Serum lipid profile’ meaning a test for cholesterol, triglycerides, etc in blood….in short the ‘fats’ in her blood. She was of the 3rd category mentioned above and she asked me,
“Aaj kaunsa tapaas karna hain?”
My plain reply, ” Cholesterol, lipids ki jaanch”
In my hurry to finish my work on time I could not think what I should tell her. (Plus never before had I explained to a patient about a lipid profile so didn’t have a reply ready in my head). So I said to her the easiest non technical reply that came to my head….which I didn’t even bother to replay in my head..
“Khun mein kitni charbee hain uskaa jaanch karna hain!!!”
To the uninitiated: Charbee is Mumbai Slang for ‘attitude’ or ‘masti’.