Last Laugh

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In the Jocular Vein

With lightning speed

Before burning off a wart on the patient's wrist, I didn't notice that someone had switched the cautery settings from "low" to "high" and from "35" to "100." With the electrode tip poised just above the target, I stepped on the foot-pedal switch. A fat violet-white arc zapped across the 1/4-inch gap. The wart vaporized in a small fireball, and a pillar of smoke rose straight up to mushroom across the ceiling. My foot came off the switch in an instant.

The patient looked up at the smoke, back down at the charred crater under the late wart and observed, "Whew! Gets 'em quick, don't it, Doc?"

—Walton D. Bailey, MD
College Station, TX




Last Laugh.

Medical Economics

Sep. 3, 2004;81:84.