Top Ten Phrases That My Residents Will Be Tired of Hearing After Three Years…..

1. The three most dangerous words in medicine are “In my experience…..”

2. Don’t poke the skunk!

3. Don’t just do something, stand there!

4. Bad things get worse, not bad things get better or stay the same.

5. The plural of anecdote is anecdotes, not data.

6. The most successful interactions with patients and other medical professionals occur when they think it was their idea to do what you wanted them to do all along.

7. Sometimes kids forget to read the textbook chapter that discusses their diagnosis.

8.  Never underestimate the ability of the human brain to fool itself, especially your own.

9. You can swing a dead cat over the kids bed and he’ll get better as long as you do it for (insert time frame for typical resolution of self-limited illness).

10. Don’t believe anything a patient or family tells you about what another medical professional said to them.

Bonus (No longer said since I don’t take care of newborns anymore): It’s generally poor form to send a kid home without an anus.


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