Baby talk

In my profession what I find most challenging is  getting a proper history from the patients  or should I say parents  .They expect you to  make a  proper diagnosis   with  incomplete   and sometimes bizarre medical histories.Most do not remember the  medicines  they are administering diligently with or sometimes without  consulting a doctor.The hapless  medicos have to try their best to fill in the gaps.Most of the antibiotics are dismissed as “those white powders which you  have to make up  with water” and all cough/cold  medications are   “tonics” .I am not dealing with illiterate villagers,most of  the parents  are English speaking   professionals.It is  quite a task   and sometimes I feel that  I have to be a medical detective to unravel the mysteries .If a kid is having fever,we have to know the duration and associated symptoms.It could vary from 1 day to “many” days and then I have to choose .Also there are many who tend to exaggerate-a mild viral illness  is presented  as a  complicated syndrome with mindboggling symptoms.Some may bring in imaginary complaints  just to get  medicines.Another type of parents are those who keep thick files of their tiny tots  documenting each and every cough,sneeze and what have you.So when I ask what is the complaint,they hand over this file expecting  me to  go through each page and decipher those scribbles-oh ,yes,most doctors have horrible handwriting.Sometimes I wish  that my patients  come to me on their own without their smart  parents and their voluminous medical records,

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