RICHARD ORD: When it came to the needle, my doctor wasn’t quite on point!

​Unlike the secretive royals, I’m open and honest about my medical treatments. Not for altruistic reasons, I just like putting people off their tea.
Getting the needle about needles.Getting the needle about needles.
Getting the needle about needles.

​Last week my big toe travails had people gagging on their ham sandwiches, today it’s a blood test that may turn stomachs. It certainly turned mine.

Being a pathetic man, I’ve always been a bit funny about needles. By my reckoning, I’ve fainted three times while having a needle inserted in my arm.

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Where this phobia comes from, I’m not quite sure, but the nurse on my latest visit to the doctors said fainting is quite common as the body’s natural fight or flight response is suppressed when allowing someone to stick a needle into your arm to extract blood.

She’s the expert and her explanation sounds plausible. It’s either that, or something to do with that time I was attacked by a gang of circus clowns armed with syringes and knitting needles. Gotta be one of the two.

Anyway, I was a brave little soldier and had my blood taken without fuss or fainting. I was disappointed I didn’t get a ‘good boy’ gold sticker, but that’s the cash-strapped NHS for you. After a lengthy argument, and some sulking on my part, I agreed to return the ‘good boy’ gold sticker. Apparently, they’re just for the children.

So, job done, I left and went home. Next day, phone rings, and it’s the doctor’s surgery. ‘Hello Mr Ord,’ the woman on the end of the phone said. ‘We’ve checked your blood sample and the doctor would like to arrange a telephone consultation…’

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I know what you’re thinking. I thought exactly the same. I’ve clearly got the best blood ever tested and they want to enter it into the World Hemoglobin Championships. Why else would the doctor want to speak to me within 24 hours of a blood test?

Thoughts of being paraded through the streets holding the World Hemoglobin trophy aloft as crowds cheer me to the rafters were swimming through my head, when a silly thought occurred: ‘What if it’s bad news?’

‘It’s nothing to worry about,’ the woman said, ‘the doctor just wants to talk about your cholesterol.’ Phew!

Here’s a tip. If you’re phoning someone up about blood test results, try starting with the phrase ‘It’s nothing to worry about.’ If you don’t, you may have your nervous patient gagging on his ham sandwich...

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