Bad Followup

In medicine generally, and in Emergency Medicine specifically, we don’t get enough feedback about how the patients we saw did after our part of their treatment ended. It’s not just idle curiosity, either: sometimes we learn from things that worked well, and from others that didn’t.

Today I got some odd feedback. One of our excellent techs, out of the blue, said “you remember a guy you treated about 2 weeks ago for a finger infection”?

‘Yes’, said I.

“He’s dead now”. (Picture me becoming the color of my lab coat, trying to not perspire). “His cousin killed him”.

Aah. Not the feedback I’m used to.


  1. haven’t heard of that as a complication of paronychia before ;( how sad!

  2. Yeah, well was it his trigger finger you treated??? You might have been responsible for his inability to fire the .32!!