8. Good Guy Car Accident Victim Runs A Con
“I was an intern in a busy trauma ED when a guy walks up the ambulance bay and screams he needs to be seen immediately. They take him back and he starts telling everyone he was in a car accident last night going ‘100+ mph’ on the interstate but did not go to the hospital because he was worried about his friend, the driver. But now he’s losing feeling in his legs and has severe back pain and needs to be seen.
So of course the story is super fishy but we put him on a backboard/collar and get some xrays of chest and pelvis (our protocol for any severe trauma). The radiologist who is stationed in the ED flags me and asks when out patient got a CT scan. He showed me his pelvis x ray and his bladder is super bright: it’s filled with the iodine contrast agent they inject in your veins when you get a CT which is then excreted by the kidneys over the next few hours.
So we confront our patient about why he didn’t tell us about being seen at another hospital and getting a CT. He launches into a rambling explanation about concussions and amnesia. He has, of course, also exhibited several other drug seeking behaviors in his short time in the ED. He decides to leave AMA but not before asking the nurse directions to the nearest hospital, presumably to try the same trick.”