Friday, December 7, 2007

rectally speaking

You people think I am exaggerating when I tell you that docs have a butt-insertion fetish. Well, to wit:

“A 60-year-old man with acute pancreatitis developed persistent hiccups after insertion of a nasogastric tube. Removal of the latter did not terminate the hiccups which had also been treated with different drugs, and several manoeuvres were attempted, but with no success. Digital rectal massage was then performed resulting in abrupt cessation of the hiccups. Recurrence of the hiccups occurred several hours later, and again, they were terminated immediately with digital rectal massage. No other recurrences were observed. This is the second reported case associating cessation of intractable hiccups with digital rectal massage. We suggest that this manoeuvre should be considered in cases of intractable hiccups before proceeding with pharmacological agents.”

Now, the guy’s got hiccups. That’s a mouth thing, right? I mean, out the other end, he would be a serial farter. No, it’s his mouth. He won’t stop. What to do? Well, stick your fingers up his ass. Makes sense, eh? Can’t you picture it? Hiccup, hiccup, hiccup, insert, silence, extract, hiccup, hiccup, insert, silence, extract, hiccup …

“Dr. Bob, I think we have something here!”

“Yes, Dr. Jim, I agree. What a novel idea! Tell me, how did you conceptualize of this solution?”

“Well, Dr. Bob, I was reading one of my old Med School textbooks, How and When to Compromise the Anal Cavity. Just for old times’ sake, really. Loved that course. And I noticed that I jotted in the margin, ‘Always,’ and ‘At every opportunity.’ Then later in the book, I found a muse I wrote to myself, ‘The butthole is the gateway to health.’ I started thinking. Remember Extant Physiology Lab, where we tried to push the existing knowledge of biological functions?”

“Yes, Dr. Jim, I do.”

“Well, Dr. Bob, at NYU we tested the hypothesis that a person could not burp and fart at the same time. We were amazed that the historical data was so conclusive. So we began controlled tests among volunteers from the general population, and then later amongst ourselves.”

“Go on, Dr. Jim”

“Alright, Dr. Bob. From a scientific viewpoint, it has to be understood that a ‘fart’ is not something defined purely by auditory cognition.”

“Of course, Dr. Jim.”

“Yes. It is the mere passing of gaseous fecal matter that establishes whether or not a ‘fart’ has occurred.”

“The silent-but-deadly effect.”

“Precisely! So we rigged a sensor line into a Dixie cup and duct taped the device onto the posterior out-door.”


“Thank you, Dr. Bob.”

“You are welcome, Dr. Jim. We then induced a burp effect through the consumption of various soft drinks.”

“Did you also enhance the physiological environment to increase the likelihood of farting?”

“You are following this research closely. I am impressed, Dr. Jim.”

“As am I with myself, Dr. Bob.”

“As well you should be, Dr. Jim. As you anticipated, the original experiment design was fatally flawed. The subjects burped on a recurring and frequent basis, but watch as we did – no farts.”

“What did you do in response, Dr. Bob?”

“We adjusted the testing protocol, after appropriate presentation and approval from the Chief of the Medical Staff, to isolate a subject-preparation phase.”

“Do tell.”

“Before a subject was fitted with the butt-gas capture system, we sat them in a room for thirty minutes and feed them beans and Coke.”


“Thank you, Dr. Jim. We anxiously watched both mouths and butts of the subjects. It usually took no more than 15 minutes post-consumption for the body to respond.”

“And what were the observations, Dr. Bob?”

“The subjects did indeed burp and fart rather intensely, however, never at the same time!”


“Yes. Now we had to figure out why.”

“And did you?”

“No. Funding ran out. But this one subject had such a magnificent ass that I chose to specialize in gynecology.”

“So the research was a success.”

“Yes, it was.”

“So tell me, Dr. Bob, how does that research relate to the patient in front of us now, the one with repeating hiccups?”

“Simple, Dr. Jim, and forgive me for suggesting that I am rather shocked that you do not see the correlation already.”

“I am merely deferring to your expertise, Dr. Bob, and I hope to hear more about the specialty-inducing subject as well.”

“Very well, Dr. Jim. The results of my previous research as applied to the present situation are thus: If one cannot fart and burp at the same time, then there must be a relationship between the two escape hatches. It cannot be avoided. So, if a patient presents with hyper-activity in one of the regions, compromise the other and see what happens!”

“Research in action!”


“So, tell me, have you ever treated a serial farter by cramming something down their throat?”

“Yes, but the hospital’s legal staff informs me that I cannot speak of the matter until the litigation is resolved.”

“I understand.”

I get hiccups upon occasion. I wonder if my insurance company will pay for a butt plug? “Hello, Blue Cross Nurse Hotline? Can’t stop my hiccups. Any ideas? Hmmm. Didn’t think of that … ok … hhmmmm … alright. And that’s covered? Wow. Ok. Thank you. Have a nice day.”

Hiccup. Insert. Silence. Ut oh! My pants are getting tight!

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