Tuesday, November 06, 2012

Medical Checkup: Alien Invasion!

SahmYook Medical Center
Seoul, South Korea

I should note up front that my visit to this Seventh Day Adventist hospital was as delightful as a hospital visit can be when one is being investigated from stem to stern. I in fact had no medical complaint necessary to have looked into; rather, I needed to undergo my annual checkup required by Ewha Womans University as one duty of my professorial position. The visit was -- as ever -- an educational experience that I'm glad I need not share with my students!

Not on video, anyway. They're welcome to read about it here. As follows . . .

First, I met a young doctor who checked to see if I might perhaps be trembling excessively -- and I was nervous about that -- but he diagnosed me as trembling just about exactly enough for me age. I reckon I wasn't excessively frightened by his medical authority.

I then had my eyes checked by a kind young nurse. She found a slight inflammation in my left eye, but my vision was not especially bad for my age -- I'm not yet seeing angels and demons battling over my soul! Not that I admitted to, anyway . . .

Afterwards, I had my chest x-rayed while I basked in the adulation of lovely young nurses enthralled at the sight of my powerful pectorals. Or maybe those 'feminines' were just envisioned angels debating whether my pectorals were strong enough yet to power a set of wings, for when I stepped away from the machine, I saw only the x-ray technician, a heavy-set guy in his forties . . .

I next was weighed in the balances, measured for my height, and taken of my pulse and its pressure. All okay. Maybe better than okay, for my pulse was 55 -- exactly my age! Serendipitous? I think not! Unsure what this Jungian synchronicity might mean, though . . . Incidentally, my vision was checked again -- maybe the elderly nurse who investigated this second time was suspicious that I might have seen angels or demons after all -- but I performed even better on the eye chart, happening to recall from memory several of the letters on the previous, identical chart.

Somewhere in this procession of Foucauldian panoptical experiences, I was forced to produce an intimate substance that I'd rather leave unspecified.

Finally, however, came the alien invasion, a tube pressed down my throat so that a middle-aged male doctor could see what's there below (as if science doesn't already know!). I felt like John Hurt in the first Alien film, for the procedure did hurt! The nurse assisting the doctor later reported that I had a throat inflammation and should avoid irritating it. Well, that's a fine thing to advise me to avoid after the two of them had spent five minutes plunging the Transatlantic Cable down my esophagus! Next time they want to do that, I'll have to remind them of their own medical advice!

But to be utterly serious, the staff was wonderful and the checkup as painless as a checkup can be, so I recommend this hospital to everyone, including other invading aliens like myself . . .

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At 7:57 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ahoy there Jeffers!

"Port" is your left, "stern" is... well I can understand an examining doc taking a look-see there... anyways, the phrase is "stem to stern." (Has to do with the laying of the keel.)

Hope you had an observant editor seeing you through to the end of BBB.

Herschel D.

At 8:05 AM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

Herschel, thanks. I was relying on something an old army man once said to me, so I'll take a navy man's better word!

Jeffery Hodges

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At 8:28 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well... I did get to thinkin' since it was a Seventh Day Adventist's Hospital...


At 8:38 AM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

Don't worry -- they'll let us on the Ark.

Jeffery Hodges

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At 4:29 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Humorous look at this. Just be glad you were not attacked by the snake from behind! Although the preparation is worse than the actual event. It is a highly recommended procedure for men of our advanced age. If you have a chance, google humorist Dave Barry's account of his first colonoscopy.

At any rate, I am glad you have been deemed heathly enough to continue your academic career.


At 6:51 AM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

Hmmm . . . now you've got me worried. I either get it in the end or get it in the end, or both. Ugh!

Jeffery Hodges

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At 11:01 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jeanne Calment, the French supercentenarian is said to have never had any checkup or any hospital visit for that matter. Maybe that's the way to live a 100 :) After all about 200.000 Americans die every year from medical errors and many more from ADR, and these are just the official records. I believe the lousy and permanently underfinanced polish healthcare system must kill many more per 1000 patients annually.


At 12:05 PM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

That's why I didn't request anesthesia for the cable down my throat!

Jeffery Hodges

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