Sunday 15 January 2012

Yeah but no but...

"32 year old female, diarrhoea"

Firstly I wondered who calls an ambulance for diarrhoea especially at the healthy age of 32? Secondly, who does this on Christmas day? Surely, hospital is the last place on earth anyone would want to be? To be fair I shouldn't be surprised. Who am I to judge anyway?! We pulled up outside the rather bedraggled looking house in the rather bedraggled looking street in the rather bedraggled looking neighbourhood. A few token Christmas lights hung from windows, the street was covered in litter, bins lay on their sides and as we walked up the path we had to navigate the piles of dog mess. A dead looking Christmas wreath hung from the front door. It was a pretty miserable scene! A little kid opened the door, ran off down the hallway and disappeared into a room on the left. We followed and entered the living / dining room. It was a sight to behold! Imagine the Royle Family. No, not the Queen, Prince Phillip and the Corgis, think Ricky Tomlinson and Sue Johnston from TV series. Add to the mix an offspring of Vicky Pollard and Ali G plus a few scruffy looking children and you'll be close to seeing what I was staring at. All were wearing the obligatory paper Christmas hats, a staffordshire bull terrier was sat expectantly at the side of the table wanting some of the mangy looking turkey. Silence engulfed the room.

"Happy Christmas! Who are we hear to see?"

"Me, innit" 

That "Me, innit" came from the Vicky Pollard of the motley crew sat in front of us. She was of weird proportions, a space-hopper for a body, clad in an ill-fitting t-shirt with 'LUSH' written across it. Her bottom half was 3/4 length joggers, barely big enough to cover her festively large legs and hind. Her hair was pulled back tightly into a pony-tail, her face covered in multiple piercings, a few in the ears, nose, lips and eyebrow. It wasn't a good look. I knew the following conversation would be a struggle at best but unfortunately it was a conversation that had to happen!

"OK, what's your name my love?"


"Hi Chantelle, my name's Ella, what's been happening today?"

"So I was sat down having my Christmas dinner right and I farted yeah and it felt squidgy so I went to the toilet and I realised I had shit myself yeah and it smelt fishy so I thought I had C Diff (* see below) innit so I called 999. Is it C Diff? 'Cause I heard that is really dangerous right, I think I need to go again, shall I not flush so you can look in case it's C Diff? I'm not ill but I do need the toilet again"

And breathe! What do you say to that? There was a short pause where me and my crew mate just stared in amazement and then he saved me!

"No, we won't need to see it. Have you been unwell recently or was this the first time you've been ill"

"No, the first time was just when I farted, innit"

"Any other symptoms? Any pain? Any vomiting?"


Thank god he spoke because I was still staring, looking at her, her family, the house, the dog, trying not to laugh. I eventually composed myself.

"It doesn't sound like C Diff but if you....."

"Yeah but how do you know?"

"As I was saying, this was your first episode of diarrhoea, you haven't been unwell and you haven't tried any home remedies such as Imodium. You also have no abdo pain, no fever, no vomiting and you don't appear dehydrated. It seems to just be an upset stomach."

As I was talking and trying explain that all she had was diarrhoea she began to put her coat and shoes on. 

"You don't need to go to hospital, you'd probably be more comfortable to stay at home and see how it goes"

"Yeah but it smelt fishy innit so it might be C Diff"

"I doubt it's C Diff"

"Yeah but it might be right?"

I wasn't going to argue, I'd had enough, it was Christmas day and I was arguing about fishy diarrhoea. Enough was enough. Hospital it was then. Who am I to give a medical opinion? We took Chantelle to the nearest hospital, handed over to the nurse and were redirected to the empty waiting room.

"Right, just wait here until your name is called. See you later, hope you feel better"

I walked away, the automatic doors slid open, I began to step through to the cold Christmas day air when she shouted:

"When will I know if it's C Diff?"

I just kept walking!

* Definition: Clostridium difficile (or C difficile) is a bacteria that normally lives in the large intestine (colon). C difficile may cause inflammation of the colon (colitis) when it becomes too prevalent in the large intestine. This overgrowth of C difficile may take place after a person has taken antibiotics that have killed the helpful bacteria that live in the intestine.
C difficile can be passed from person to person. A person may not have symptoms of having an overgrowth of C difficile, but he may still be able to pass the bacteria on to another person.

C difficile can cause diarrhoea, abdominal pain, vomiting, dehydration and fever.


  1. You know, that girl (?) has probably seen every episode of The Real A&E, Helicopter Heroes, Casualty and Holby.

    Our knowledge pales into insignificance when compared to hers. Sometimes, don't you wish you had the opportunity to do society a favour and..... No, can't think like!!!

    Or, we could have got this all wrong. Perhaps this was a cleverly constructed plan of escape for Waynetta (chantelle?)...

    Now, if only you could have rescued the dog!

  2. Did she phone for a lift back home ? ( BG )

  3. When I started in the job I was told "there's no such thing as a shit job". That was a shit job in every way.

  4. You should submit this as a script for the program it would be hilarious as good if not better than the writers. Eric Burrows.


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