The first to the respiratory laboratory to breathe hard into pipes and tubes, all recorded on modern screens with hidden computers calculating tidal volumes and expiratory rates. Nothing dramatises the huge change in modern medicine since I was a student, when we breathed into moving cylinders that recorded our breathing by scratching a line on a carbonised piece of paper, which we fixed by spraying with hair lacquor.
Second to a dermatology clinic, where I stripped to expose the extent of my dreadful rashes. They are now my greatest torment, keeping me awake at night, and even waking me with their terrible itching, so I wake scratching and bleeding in the bed. It is a monster that has taken over my body, demanding attention and grabbing me by the skin on any part it fancies, leaving wheals and sores. It is an embarrassment to myself and my family as I desperately battle against the temptation to poke and rub. In company, I end up sitting on my hands, or suruptitiously pinching myself hard to distract from the pain of the irritation. The consultant was sympathetic fortunately, and has prescribed some stronger cream and an antihistamine to ease the irritation, plus an appointment to the allergy clinic in case there is anything obvious causing it within my environment.
|St Thomas Hospital Nightingale Ward|