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NEW YORK, NY – Physician Joel Winters had not washed his white coat in over 10 years.  However, after acquiring a 25th stain today while caring for a patient with profuse C. diff diarrhea, Winters finally succumbed and decided that it was time to wash his white coat.

laundry“It’s time, it’s just time,” Winters said sadly, as he placed his white coat into a plastic grocery bag to take to the cleaners later.  “That C. diff is a game-changer.”

For years, Winters has been reluctant to wash his white coat despite numerous complaints from patients, families, and fellow colleagues.  The reason had never been clear.  “Dr. Winters is a fantastic person and doctor,” said nurse Janet Summers.  “All the more reason why he wore that awful thing.  It looked like a Jackson Pollock painting.”

Many thought it was due to laziness, but Winters was always thorough in his work and care for his patients.  Though many theories have been suggested over the past decade, many now believe that it represents a time capsule or scrapcoat of memories.

“Who can forever forget the Ketchup Incident of 2007 or Hematemesis 2012?” said physician assistant August Williams.  “I think every kind of bodily fluid has ended up on that white coat.  And breakfast food, for sure.  When I look at Dr. Winters and his white coat, it makes me reflect on my career over the past 10 years.”

Winters says there’s the usual blood, sweat, and tears on his white coat.  There’s also phlegm, vomit, stool, spinal fluid, joint fluid, amniotic fluid, and peritoneal fluid.  He’s accumulated egg, bacon, ketchup, mustard, avocado, tuna salad, barbecue sauce, and grits on there.  There are random streaks of pen, marker, and crayons (at least 5 colors) too.  The largest and oldest stain is from when he tripped and landed in a muddy puddle nearly 10 years ago to this day.

“God knows, that thing is probably colonized by every organism ever,” said friend and disgusted infectious diseases specialist Leah Springer.  “Honestly, that thing doesn’t need a dry cleaner.  That thing needs to be autoclaved.”

So what happens now?

“I’m pretty sure I’m going to get grief about my tie next,” said Winters, gesturing at his crusty, smelly, wrinkled, and out-of-style necktie.  “We’ve got 20 stains on this one.  It’s a beauty.  I think we can hit 26 stains on this one.”

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  • Peter M DeReus

    That’s where my ancestry starts so I’m not surprised!!

  • Dutch Daffodil

    Wow, I know a Peter De Reus who lives in The Netherlands.

  • Stacy Ong

    Who in the hell chose white?

  • Stacy Ong

    Who in the hell chose white?

  • Stacy Ong

    He had that nurse trained

  • Stacy Ong

    He had that nurse trained

  • Andrew Smith

    I would NEVER wash my white coat. It shall carry the stains of all my patients

  • Donna Marie Maglione

    Nosocomial infections anyone?

  • Ross Kemp

    Andrew Smith, I feel like this could be you

  • Marylyn Madden-Maddox

    I always washed and ironed my scrub jacket. One day in surgery a nasty nasty sweaty attending backed away from the OR table and walked over to where my jacket hung on the door, bent down and swiped his brow across my jacket. Ugh!!!

  • Judy Downing

    That is disgusting, I would not allow him near me.

  • Stanlee Lu

    E.coli and his friends will grow profusely.

  • Lisa Bolton

    I wasn’t aware it was supposed to be washed? Oops!

  • Karen Spielman Graham

    Eeeeeoooowwww! Infection control–someone!!!!

  • Freida Fontenot

    An infection control nurses nightmare

  • Derek LeJeune

    What?

  • Freida Fontenot

    Lol that is so cute

  • Laurie Lafont LeJeune

    Derek LeJeune

  • David Dahlen

    It would be nice if MD’s washed their hands once in awhile!

  • Angie Stratton

    Every time I see a stethoscope scrunchie I question the cleanliness of the scope and sanity of the person who decided to keep the 90s alive on their professional equipment.

  • Geraldine Epping

    Oren Friedman

  • Jaime Gauggel-Adleta

    I wash mine, put it on, and IMMEDIATELY drip coffee down the lapel. Never. Fails.

  • Melissa Harwell

    I realize this is satire, but ewww. Just ewww.
    Anyways, I’m more afraid of ties or ::shutter:: stethoscope covers

  • Anne Moore

    Allie Pierce

  • Gretchen Myers

    Yuck!

  • Matt Malkin

    The joy of anesthesia is having the only stains on your white coat being coffee from conference. Don’t ask too many questions about scrubs, though.

  • Twotwotwo Twice

    I had an excuse — my washing machine needed major surgery to replace the transmission clutch. It is a $10 part, but all the guts have to be temporarily removed to get to it; no laparoscopic technique possible. I was never trained in Whirlpool organ transplants.

  • Val Beck

    Paul Taglienti…. The bathroom floor?

  • Abbey Eckman

    In medical school and use my coat once a week…what’s worse is our anatomy lab coats

  • Phil Petty

    Why? it just gets dirty again, the moment you put it on.

  • Larry Frechette

    Some kind of neat freak?

  • Lisa Barber

    totally!!! i had to finally clean my shoes because they were covered in blood.

  • Rebecca Reed

    Haven’t worn a white coat in 14 years!

  • Jeanne Sincavage

    I knew surgeons who had the same attitude about their OR shoes. It often seemed as if the stains were the only thing maintaining the integrity of the shoes…or the duct tape!

  • Hubert Dłz

    Rush White Coats Ujene Lusciouks

  • Ron Williams

    One neurosurgeon had a habit of leaving his dirty lab coat in the ICU nurses station until one of my fellow OCD RN would take it home and wash it and iron it.

  • Peter M DeReus

    Wait…. we’re supposed to wash them? But mine has a nice shade of yellow known as “bilirubin: 25”.

  • SonyaandSam Crites

    Would love to culture the sleeves of a resident’s lab coat…

  • Anna Okruta

    Yuk, I change mine every day.

  • Kelly Mccormack Vassallo

    I can’t really picture a doctor close enough to cdiff to get it on their coat. Most docs I know sidle away quickly when the scent is detected.

  • Todd Boleman

    Yes!

  • Dawn Pumilia Smith

    Scrapcoat of memories!!!

  • Alejandra Pearlman

    Hey those stains remind us of the good times

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