Go to the ER

If you’re ever called and asked what to do in and emergency, just say “go to the ER”. It works for everyone, receptionist to specialist.

You fell and scraped your hand? Go to the ER.

You’re on 47 medicines, have 11 active problems, I’ve been your doctor for 22 years, and you have the exact same thing I’ve admitted you for the last 17 times? Go to the ER. I won’t call to tell them anything about you.

You’re in my office and have high blood pressure without symptoms? Go to the ER. Here’s a list of tests you shouldn’t go home without, including renal artery MRA’s.

You have vague neurologic symptoms that have no basis in anatomy or known medical science? Go to the ER, and tell the ER doc you need an MRI. Tonight.

It’s 2PM, you’re in my office with a fracture? Take your unsplinted fracture to the ER, and have them call me so I can refer your fracture care to the orthopedist next door.

I’ll always have a job.

Many thanks to James Lileks for spurring me to this post.


  1. Makes me wonder. Friday’s the last day in my private practice. Sunday’s my first shift in the “Fast Track” of our local ER.


  2. Well, Craig, that means that you probably weren’t sending your patients to the ED with enough prescriptions for tests. I’d like to hear your thoughts on the matter after a month in the new job!


  3. We’ll see how it goes. :-o

  4. Amen. Just remember all those referals will fund your retirement! It is nice to know we all have the same “problems”