Fillers A memorable patient

The evidence and Audrey

BMJ 2001; 322 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.322.7290.844 (Published 07 April 2001) Cite this as: BMJ 2001;322:844
  1. Ross Camidge, clinical lecturer
  1. Western General Hospital, Edinburgh

    This is a tale of two extraordinary people, one a professor of evidence based medicine, the other a retired schoolteacher with advanced ovarian cancer. I was a house officer to the famous professor when Audrey, the teacher, was an inpatient under our care.

    One night, although not on call, I was still tidying things up on the wards when I heard someone call my name. Looking up I saw Audrey beckoning me. She had been suffering from pneumonia arising from a metastasis of the lung, and I assumed she was asking me for some assistance. As I approached, however, she told me breathlessly that I worked too hard, I wasn't being paid for it, and that I should go home. She was that sort of person.

    Audrey recovered from her pneumonia …

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