Here’s one for you. “What do an embolus and a medical student have in common? They’re both wandering clots.” Medical students have long been the butt of many a doctor’s joke, and some friendly banter between bedside grillings can help to break the ice. But where do you draw the line?
In theatre with a surgeon recently, I was asked to perform a digital rectal examination on the patient before surgery. I hesitantly donned a glove and proceeded. I told him I could feel a mass along the back wall just near the external anal sphincter. “Oh for fuck’s sake,” he sighed, walking away. So my answer was poor: I should have known the correct terminology. To be honest, it was news to me that the anal canal was considered in quadrants, let alone which one the lesion I’d felt was in.
Explaining that this was the first time I’d