February 28, 2006, 11:13 am

How To Freak Yourself Out Via the World Wide Web

Write what on the chart?

She’s in love with the neuro surgeon who doesn’t know she exists?

That she’d rather be waxing her bikini line than working at this particular moment?

That she’d like to dot her “i”s with tiny hearts but they told her to stop?

Would you believe this was actually part of an ad for razor blades?

It was.

All she has to do is write “Patient states less pain and skin irritation when “x” razor is used.”

There, problem solved.

What a wimp.


Some advice from a person who has been there, read it all and freaked out.

Do NOT search the entire known world via the internet if you or a loved one is diagnosed with a medical problem.

An abbreviated search is fine. Stick with WebMD, perhaps the site of a national organization devoted to patients with that specific diagnosis (with their approved links) or a patient oriented medical site that will give you the information you need without giving you every nasty statistic, horror story, photo or urban legend that will scare the hell out of you.

You CAN have too much information.

I did. And I had needless anxiety for weeks.

If it can happen to a nurse, it can happen to you.

An informed patient is a knowledgable patient. An over-informed family member is a heart attack waiting to happen.

On the upside, I am now an self-designated expert on any possible cyst your gonads can produce (and what’s inside them), but it came with a virtual encyclopedia of unnecessary, frightening information on ovarian cancer, testicular cancer, cancer staging, wigs for cancer patients.

You get the picture.

By the time I was done I was pretty sure every living thing in the house had ovarian cancer, including my husband.

All for two ovarian dermoid cysts the size of quarters.

The moral of the story? If you need information, look at a few sites and talk to your doc if you have questions. Don’t go searching for information you don’t need to have.

Trust me.

Oh, and by the way, I am also quite an “expert” on parasitic twins!

Don’t ask…..

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About Me

My name is Kim, and I'm a nurse in the San Francisco Bay area. I've been a nurse for 33 years; I graduated in 1978 with my ADN. My experience is predominately Emergency and Critical Care, and I have also worked in Psychiatry and Pediatrics. I made the decision to be a nurse back in 1966 at the age of nine...

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