Tuesday, September 6, 2011

I'm (Probably Not) Dying

I'm what you might call a hypochondriac. I assume I'm dying every day.

Elbow hurts? I have elbow cancer.

Knee hurts? I have incurable knee disease.

Back hurts? My kidneys are poisoned.

Stomach hurts? Stomach cancer. Appendicitis. Uterine cancer. Ovarian cancer. Fertilized egg stuck in my fallopian tube. Alien implantation.

Yeah, stomach pain is a fun one.

What do I do with all this pain and ailments? Go to a doctor? Heck no! What good would that do? I go to the all knowing authority on injury, illness and you-are-probably-dying disease. WebMD.

Have you ever entered your ailments into the symptom checker on WebMD? It's a rip-roaring good time, lemme tell ya. You click on the part of the body that ails you and then check off all the symptoms you have. It then spits out possible conditions associated with said symptoms ranging from Meh, It's Nothing to You Will Be Dead in Five Minutes.

Which one do I always, ALWAYS, assume I have? That's right, You Will Be Dead in Five Minutes. Which is why I have to hide from the husband when I'm diagnosing myself on WedMD. He somehow thinks WebMD feeds my hysteria and therefore will take my phone or the computer away from me if he sees me on the site, causing me to have an epic temper tantrum preventing me from inadequately preparing for my impending death.

I have turned to WebMD for each of the ailments listed above and every time, every single time, WebMD includes Panic Attack in the list of possible conditions.

Panic Attack? Really WebMD? What are you trying to say? That people who check their symptoms on WebMD are prone to hysterics? That we tend to over-react? That we tend to freak out over absolutely nothing? Listen here WebMD, I've had panic attacks and never once did my elbow start hurting. I'm pretty sure that elbow pain I've been experiencing for the last day and a half is due to bone cancer. Duh.

And you call yourself a doctor. Honestly.

Yesterday, I started experiencing a tingly sensation on the top of my head which has persisted throughout today. Time for WebMD!

I have to say, checking off my list of symptoms was quite fun. All I wanted to do was check off "tingly head," find out that my brain was infested with brain-eating bugs and tell my boss I was going home to die. He'd probably try to convince me to stay due to all those Important Deadlines, but seriously dude, there are bugs in my head.

"Tingly head" was not a listed symptom, but "agitation" was and I was all, "well I have been feeling extra stabby lately," so I checked it.

Then came "depressed mood." Yep, I battle depression. Check!

Next was "difficulty concentrating." Hmmm, let's see. I've stopped writing this post four times to check for split ends, watch an ant crawl across my desk, ponder how long I can "hold it" until my bladder explodes, and check for split ends again. Yeah, I'd say I have difficulty concentrating.

Difficulty falling asleep? Check!

Difficulty sleeping? Check!

Easily distracted? Che...hey you guys wanna see my wind up caterpillar? His name is Henry. He crawls across my des...where are all these ants coming fro...OMG I have to pee so bad.

Feeling of being detached from reality? Bahahaha. Who me?


Forgetfulness? Yes I'd like some cheese. I'm sorry what were we talking about?

Hallucinations? Did I ever tell you guys about the time I was pretty darn sure I saw a YUGE wolf at the gas station? And there totally was a squirrel sitting on my tire one morning before work.  Totally.

Hearing voices? What? Can you please speak up? I can't hear you. It's so loud in my head.

Paranoia? They're watching me. I know it.

As I checked off each new symptom, the list of possible conditions grew, with Depression and Schizophrenia battling it out for the top spot. Finally I checked my last symptom "impending sense of doom" and coming from behind, shooting to the top like The Little Engine That Could, as the leading possible cause of "tingly head" was: Generalized Anxiety Disorder.

Seriously, WebMD? Seriously? Anxiety? Me? Were you even paying attention to my symptoms? I'm hearing voices. Thousands of tiny bug voices.

What sort of quack-job, crack-head medical school did you go to? I should sue you for mal-practice.

Generalized Anxiety Disorder. Phst.

No you don't get partial credit for trying to cover all your bases.  In fact, I'm pretty sure that makes you an even worse doctor.  Seriously, you listed Intoxication (yeah, I'm pretty sure I'd know if I were drunk), Premenstrual Syndrome (it's like you're asking to be stabbed) and Panic Attack (thought you could just slip that one in without me noticing, didja?) as possible conditions of "tingly head"?  WTF ever.

I think it's time I find a new doctor, but first, tell me, do you think this pain in my wrist is carpal tunnel or wrist cancer?

Oh wait, never mind. I'm just having a panic attack.


  1. OMG!
    I've spent many a long weekend waiting anxiously for 8AM on Monday morning to get into see my doctor because I'm convinced I have an incurable disease. My poor, patient, saint like doctor...she's so kind.
    I have to FORCE myself to not use WebMD.
    (By the way, during this comment I've experienced three twinges in my stomach and a twitchy eye - I'm hoping it's nothing serious).

  2. You are hilarious! Get off the damn WebMD and go to see the doctor . . . just saying . . . Although, wouldn't it be interesting if the real live doctor diagnosed you with Panic Attack.
    Please don't stab me for that one! ;)

  3. I'm not allowed to use WebMD either.. according to my bf... last time I used it, I was convinced I had a brain tumor.

  4. Oooh - you have head bugs? That's never good. I knew a girl with head bugs in high school.

    Silver lining? Her parents bought a new library shelf in her honor. So, really, we all won.

  5. I've hard tingles in the head cause good ideas to come out...you must have that often. I try not to do Web MD - but I still do it. Doctors must hate being told what people think it said they had on Web MD

  6. Hahahaha Sorry... I'm cracking up right now because I've done the same exact shit. And? I was diagnosed with Generalized Anxiety Disorder 12 years ago. Now I remember what I'm like when I'm off meds.

  7. I had a panic attack once because I thought I had mood altering cancer so I went to my doctor who told me to suck it up.

    Plus, my elbow hurts all. the. time.

  8. I am beginning to see why your husband hides your phone and computer when he finds out you've been on Web MD.

    I have anxiety disorder and panic attacks...but neither of these things makes my head tingle or my elbow hurt. You should definitely get a new doctor.

  9. Oh lord. Do they really have "Intoxication" listed? Because that would be freaking hilarious. "You're symptoms? They all point to drunk." Ha ha!

  10. I was ordered by my husband to stay off the internet while I was pregnant b/c it was making me so paranoid. I didn't listen but I should have. I wonder if doctors get really annoyed with us when we start off by saying, "So I read on the internet..."

  11. Holy crap. Funny!

    Elbow cancer (bwahahaha!) -- um, ahem...just what are the symptoms for it? Mine seems to be a tad creaky.

  12. OK, am I ALLOWED to comment? Since, you know, doctor here. Actual, board certified family doctor. And I got to tell you, I wish I could be your PCP. Cause I get the check-WebMD-compulsion and I get you. It's gonna be ok. I mean, of course you're dying every day (had to get that in) but its so slow that I can make sure you hardly notice! Seriously, come on over to Pittsburgh (or I'll bring my stethoscope to Blissdom). And take a deep breath. It's good for panic attacks, errr, I mean bugs in the head and wrist cancer!

  13. Hahaha - I TOTALLY have a friend like that as well... especially with the stomach pains - what is it with the stomach?!

    I hope the bugs don't eat your brain, seriously.

    Also? The WebMD has actually helped us once. We were about to take our 2yr old to the hospital, totally thought he was dying. Hubs quickly checked online and said.. try a tsp of Pepto, so we did.. OMFG - the poor little guy had heartburn! HAHA.. thank YOU, WebMD, sincerely! lmao

  14. You make me laugh. Out loud. Repeatedly.

    Hubby is like this. Tonight he lifted the back of his shirt and asked me if "this lump" was just muscle or a tumour.

    Also, turns out everything I ever thought was wrong with me is anxiety and depression. I think that's the root cause of all the illnesses in the entire world. That and cigarettes. And transfats. And Coke. And Snookie.

  15. So is the "generalized" conclusion here that you have panic attacks? Cuz...I wasn't clear on that.

    I love you, but you should really stop going to WebMD. Just say no, SG! Truly.

  16. I am just loving the fact that the acronym for Generalized Anxiety Disorder is GAD! Based on that alone, I think you have it.

  17. I am not allowed to go on WebMD anymore, as per husband's orders. I always ALWAYS think I'm dying when I'm on there!

  18. The last time I used WebMD it turned out to be right. But I was diagnosing my kid and not myself. That changes it right?

  19. This had my dying laughing... because I have a friend who pulls WebMD up on her phone any time I'M complaining of a random ailment. Then SHE procedes to tell me to get to a hospital STAT and demand an MRI because clearly, I'm dying DUH!

    Thanks for sharing the hilarious neuroses. I was running a quart low!

  20. Too funny!!! I'm kind of a hypochondriac about bug bites. I always assume I've been poisoned, or I'm going to get lyme disease or malaria or something. Bugs are evil.

  21. The first sign on ANY symptom my husband Googles it - no matter what it is. He's always wrong so I stopped listening to him. Wait, let's be honest, I never started.

  22. Your husband should take a page out of Jenny's Victor's book and block WebMD on your computer ;-)

    Pretty sure the last time I checked that thing it told me I had a kidney infection. I was just hung over. Assholes.

  23. This is hysterical! I used to run to the internet whenever I had "something" going on. I stopped...it was giving me a headache (which no doubt was leading to a brain tumor). I also couldn't read the What To Expect When You're Expecting book while pregnant because it gave way to much details on the things that COULD go wrong.

  24. Omg.... that's me on the regular! If its a headache, I'm having a stroke... I've actually asked my kids to look at my face to see if it was lopsided cause it was tingling...

  25. Oh my goodness. This sounds like an adult version of my middle daughter. She ALWAYS has something wrong with her from a headache to a splinter to a hurt pinky toe to a sore elbow. She is so funny!

  26. I skip WebMD and go straight to the doctor. I'm pretty sure they hated me when I repeatedly showed up for chest pains. (Turned out to be gastritis, not a panic attack.)

  27. Gosh I wish I could express myself in writing as well as you do! I get anxiety just thinking about it. I actually experienced this anxiety last week when I really tried really hard to write what I was thinking and totally couldn't I got pretty mad about it actually... wonder what web MD would say about that... and if there is a cure.

  28. I know you're on the verge of dying, but I've got to laugh... hahahaha, sorry... hahahaha

    I'm the opposite of you; whenever I felt sick/pain, I sort of kept it to myself and refused to see any doctor about it (stupid, I know). I figured I'd rather not know when I have that elbow cancer or infected kidney (and that's what happened in May, unfortunately). Ignorance is bliss. LOL

    If it makes you feel any better though, I have every single one of those symptoms too (except the hypochondriac thingy). But hey, I don't think there's anything wrong with it, do you? ;) lol

  29. I think you have med school disease. Or psych grad student disease. At the point in their studies when they learn all the available symptoms and their respective disorders and eventually diagnose themselves with multiple disorders, and emphatically announce them to their colleagues and beg their advisors for a referral. A little too much knowledge can be a dangerous thing.

  30. Haha! Love how panic attack is a possible cause of everything. Hilarious! Have a hang nail? Panic attack! :) It's probably the cause of your split ends, too.


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