I definitely think women doctors, nurses and assistants have a great sense of humor. A few months ago I experienced some chest pain a couple of days in a row, so I went to see a cardiologist. When I arrived for my appointment I noticed in the waiting area that all of the patients were either really old, obese or both. When I checked in the receptionist looked a me funny when she asked, "may I help you?" I told her I had an appointment with the cardiologist. She seemed shocked, but she took my ID and insurance card(s). She looked over my info and then blurted, "wow, I think you are the youngest patient I've ever checked in at this office." I took a seat and waited to be called in.
My name was called and I was greeted by someone who introduced herself as the Physician's Assistant (PA). She escorted me to the exam room and we sat down. She started to explain the days' agenda, first, I will go over the medical questionnaire and history with you. Next you will meet with the doctor for follow up questions and a brief examination. Then you will come back with me to the lab where I will do an EKG, sonogram and stress test. Finally, you will meet with doctor again to review your test results.
The PA spent about half an hour asking me a million questions. She was probably mid 30's, early 40's, very cute, warm and pleasant. When she was done, she asked me to move and sit at then end of the exam table and the doctor would be in shortly. When the doctor walked in, I was a bit surprised. She was quite older; definitely ready to retire. She stood right in front of me, maybe a little too close and asked me about my chest pain. I told her I was pretty sure it was probably a muscle spasm or pinched muscle as I had recently started weight training, but obviously I didn't want to leave anything to chance. She gave me a nice big smile, put her hand on my knee and said, "don't worry, your in good hands now." She turned around, reached into a cabinet and pulled out a pink paper gown and a clear plastic bag. She handed both of them to me and said, "I need you to get undressed, no shorts, no socks and put on the gown. Place your shoes and all of your clothes in the bag. I'm going to finish writing my notes, wash up and then we'll continue." I was expecting her to leave. But she just turned around and started writing as she had explained. So I started to get undressed although I was wondering why. Why did I have to be naked for a heart exam?
Anyway, when the doctor heard me putting my stuff in the back she turned around and asked me to sit back on the exam table. She asked me to lower the top half of the gown so that she could listen through my chest and back with the stethoscope. She then to asked me to lay down so that she could listen through my internal organs and legs. The exam took all of 5 minutes. She said everything sounded just as it should. She asked me to sit up, cover up and wait for the PA to come take me to the lab. The PA came back, grabbed the plastic bag with my stuff and asked me to follow her to the next room. In the lab room there were two exam tables and a treadmill. Again, the PA explained, "First, I'll do the EKG, then the sonogram and last the stress test. Are you ready?" I told her I was.
She then instructed me to take off the gown, take off my under shirt and lay on the table while she gathered the EKG gear. I told her I was not wearing and undershirt. Without looking back while she gathered her equipment she said, "ok, then just take off the gown and lay on the table". Something seemed off, but I did as instructed. I will never forget the next thing I heard, "oh!" I looked over and the PA was looking at my junk in total confusion. Almost in slow motion she walked up to the table and very professionally said, "I'm sorry about any miscommunication, but would you mind putting on your underwear?" So I did.
The lab work continued, however, it was in silence and then darkness when the sonogram started. I could tell she was flustered or maybe even embarrassed, so I decided to break the silence. "I take it patients don't normally get completely undressed?" She looked at me and let out a little laugh of relief. She started to apologize if she over reacted or seemed mad. I told her not to worry about it. She finished the lab work, asked me to get fully dressed and then she would take me to the doctor's office.
When we got the to doctor's office she knocked on the door. The doctor acknowledged us to come in. When we walked in, the doctor had a sheepish grin on her face as the PA handed her my file.