This post contains conversation between a doctor and a patient in two different settings – the first in a clinic and the second in a hospital.
While reading the post, look out for broken grammar rules. (Breaking grammar rules is not uncommon in spoken English.) An example from the first conversation: ‘Not good.’ (It’s not a complete sentence.)
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The three main characters – doctor, patient, and support (reception, billing etc.) – in the two conversations have been color-coded for ease of browsing. Furthermore, explanations and activities outside the conversation have been put in brackets so that you can easily follow what’s happening.
Conversation with a general physician at his clinic
Doctor: Good evening. You look pale and your voice is out of tune.
Patient: Yes doctor. I’m running a temperature and have a sore throat.
Doctor: Lemme see.
(He touches the forehead to feel the temperature.)
Doctor: You’ve moderate fever.
(He then whips out a thermometer.)
Patient: This thermometer is very different from the one you used the last time. (Unlike the earlier one which was placed below the tongue, this one snapped around one of the fingers.)
Doctor: Yes, this is a new introduction by the medical equipment companies. It’s much more convenient, as it doesn’t require cleaning after every use.
Patient: That’s awesome.
Doctor: Yes it is.
(He removes the thermometer and looks at the reading.)
Doctor: Not too high – 99.8.
(He then proceeds with measuring blood pressure.)
Doctor: Your blood pressure is fine.
(He then checks the throat.)
Doctor: It looks bit scruffy. Not good.
Patient: Yes, it has been quite bad.
Doctor: Do you get sweating and shivering?
Patient: Not sweating, but I feel somewhat cold when I sit under a fan.
Doctor: OK. You’ve few symptoms of malaria. I would suggest you undergo blood test. Nothing to worry about. In most cases, the tests come out to be negative. It’s just precautionary, as there have been spurt in malaria cases in the last month or so.
(He then proceeds to write the prescription.)
Doctor: I’m prescribing three medicines and a syrup. The number of dots in front of each tells you how many times in the day you’ve to take them. For example, the two dots here mean you’ve to take the medicine twice in the day, once in the morning and once post-dinner.
Doctor: Do you’ve any other questions?
Patient: No, doctor. Thank you.
Conversation with an eye specialist in a hospital
Patient: Good morning. I had an appointment with the doctor at 9 AM.
Support: Have you registered with us earlier?
Support: Please show me your registration card. Or I can search for your details through your mobile number.
Patient: That would be better. My mobile number is xxx.
(She searches for the patient’s past records on her terminal.)
Support: OK, I’ve found your details. You last visited us in August 2016.
Patient: That’s right.
Support: You can pay the doctor consultation fee here.
Patient: Sure. Here is my card.
(She swipes the card and hands over the invoice to the patient.)
Support: Pl take a seat, and feel free to help yourself with water, newspapers etc.
Patient: Thank you.
(After 15-odd minutes, the attendant calls the patient’s name, following which the patient proceeds to the doctor’s cabin.)
Patient: Good morning doctor.
Doctor: Good morning. How’re are you doing today?
Patient: I’m fine. Thank you. How about you?
Doctor: I’m good. So what brings you here?
Patient: I’ve come for a regular checkup for a suspected case of glaucoma. I don’t have it, but few years back a doctor after examining my eye and knowing my family eye history advised me to undergo precautionary checkup once a year.
(He puts the past reports on the table. The doctor peruses them.)
Doctor: I see that your optic nerve is thicker than the normal. That’s probably the reason why you were asked to undergo precautionary tests every year. You can have the same two tests – visual field analysis and OCT – today and once you’ve the two reports, we can meet again in the afternoon.
(The doctor scribbles the names of the two tests on his letterhead and pushes it across the table.)
Patient: Thank you, doctor.
(The patient leaves the doctor’s cabin and again approaches the reception desk.)
Patient: I saw the doctor. He has asked for these two tests.
(He pushes the prescription towards the billing lady.)
Support: OK. The two tests will cost you xxx and you’ll get the reports in around two hours. Is that fine?
Patient: That’s fine.
(He slips his card toward her. She swipes it again and hands over the invoice a second time.)
Support: Please be seated there. Someone will call you for the first test in few minutes.
Patient: Thank you.
(Over the next two hours, he undergoes the two tests and receives the reports. Thereafter, he meets the doctor again, this time with reports.)
Doctor: I hope you had a smooth experience going through those tests.
Patient: Yes, it was. And because I’ve taken these tests in the past too, I knew what was coming.
(The patient pushes the reports toward the doctor. The doctor pores through the pages, looking at the colored images of the eye minutely.)
Doctor: Your reports are absolutely fine. Since these reports haven’t shown anything suspect in so many years, I think you can now take these tests once in two years, and not once a year.
Doctor: Well, that puts glaucoma thing to rest. Does your work involve working on laptop for long hours?
Doctor: In case your eyes get tired quickly, I would recommend xxx. It’s an eye drop, which you can use 2-3 times in the day. Our eyes get dry when we look at the computer screen without blinking for long, a common reason for tiredness in eyes. This eye drop will lubricate your eyes.
Doctor: Do you’ve any other questions?
Patient: Yes. I see few thin, black, wavy structures floating in front of my eyes and they don’t disappear even when I close my eyes. What are they? Are they harmful?
Doctor: They’re called floaters, and most persons develop them to different extent as they age. They’re not harmful.
Patient: Thank you doctor. Thanks for your time.
Doctor: You’re welcome.