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Dear Drug Seeker,

I’m really concerned about the Zika virus and the Summer Olympics going on as scheduled. Do you think this is a good idea?

– Nervous in Nashville

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“You know, there’s one medication that works… Hmmm, what’s it called… Oh, I think it starts with the letter…”

Dear Nervous,

In order to score some strong narcotics, you need to show up to the ED with a nice vague complaint, something like abdominal pain or nausea.  This is acting, so you really have to commit to the role.  BE DRAMATIC.  Squirm, toss and turn, don’t let any nurse or doctor or anything examine you, saying that you’re going to die. When your vital signs, blood work, and imaging come up negative, don’t ever ask for the drug Dilaudid directly.  Always struggle to pronounce it.  Or call it “that drug that begins with the letter D.”  Works like a charm.

Dear Drug Seeker,

I’m 89 years old and I’ve lived a full life.  I’ve been thinking about making myself DNR/DNI and learning about hospice.  I want to pass peacefully, without any heroic measures.  Any advice that you can share?

– Old in Omaha

Dear Old,

In order to get the Dilaudid, you need to bypass the weaker stuff like Percocet and morphine. The best way around this?  Develop a fullproof allergy list.  Say you can’t take Tylenol because it gives you hives, or ibuprofen because it gives you herpes.  Tell them you itch when you take Vicodin or morphine and therefore it is a TRUE DRUG allergy, unless you’re given unlimited IV Benadryl.  I can’t stress enough to only request Dilaudid by its first letter. REPEATEDLY.

Dear Drug Seeker,

I’ve been having these weird flutterings in my chest recently.  I’ve had numerous heart attacks and a triple bypass.  Should I go see my cardiologist or go to the ED?

– Palpitations in Philadelphia

Dear Palpitations,

Every once in awhile you’ll come across a doctor who refuses to give you IV Dilaudid.  Don’t fret!  Your options.  First, if you’re hospitalized, just wait until the next shift comes on and bug THAT provider.  If you’re persistent, that person will cave and give you at least a one-dose of Dilaudid.  Second, if the people in that hospital are really trying to “do the right thing,” just sign out against medical advice, leave AMA, and try another hospital.  No harm, no foul!  Your doctor or nurse won’t suspect a thing!  The best part about EDs is you can use them instead of primary care clinics and it’s much easier to get in.

Jason Redmond is a professional drug seeker, who has visited over 10,000 emergency rooms worldwide to get his fix.  He writes his column on his smartphone (a sweet iPhone 6s Plus Gold, no less), while lying comfortably in 30 out of 10 pain.  

Need some more advice?
Ask a 4th-Year Med Student (Who’s Check Out for the Year)
Ask a Hospitalist
Ask a July 1st Medicine Intern
Ask a Surgical Intern, Part 1
Ask a Surgical Intern, Part 2

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    First there was Dr. 01, the first robot physician, created to withstand toxic levels of burnout in an increasingly mechanistic and impossibly demanding healthcare field. Dr. 99 builds upon the advances of its ninety-eight predecessors by phasing out all human emotion, innovation, and creativity completely, and focusing solely on pre-programmed protocols and volume-based productivity. In its spare time, Dr. 99 enjoys writing for Gomerblog and listening to Taylor Swift.

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