Views And Reviews

Urology at the sharp end

BMJ 1994; 309 doi: (Published 19 November 1994) Cite this as: BMJ 1994;309:1378
  1. Anonymous

    My early youth was marred by enuresis so I never slept at friends' homes or had them to sleep at our house until I was in my early teens. There was no such thing as imipramine in those days, so it was a case of trying as to curb liquid intake from early afternoon, which was difficult as I lived in a warm country and participated in sports and other outdoor activities. Bribery, rewards, threats, and many other measures were attempted; all were unsuccessful. This affliction made me feel inferior and insecure. It had other effects. It laid the foundation for my obsession with body odours and my determination never to smell anything but sweet and it initiated a sequenced of events for which I am today paying the price.

    When I was 14, my parents, our general practitioner, and I became desperate and I was referred for a urological opinion. No one told me what was to happen, except that I was to have a “dilatation.” I actually underwent a cystoscopy, a urethral dilatation, a meatotomy of the external ostium, an intravenous pyelogram, and a retrograde cystourethrogram. The whole affair did provide a little humour. After I had had the dilatation and meatotomy I was left with an indwelling catheter to be used for the retrograde urethrogram. It was just a rubber tube, not a Foley catheter as you would use today. After the urologist had filled my bladder through the catheter and while he was waiting for the x ray of my full bladder I told him that I couldn't hold it any longer. He, mistakenly as it turned out, clamped a pair of artery forceps on the end of the catheter that was sticking out of my external urethral meatus, but I had to let the liquid …

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