When meeting non medical people at say, a dinner party, the same question always pops up. What is the worst thing you have ever seen? or What is the most hectic? or the Grossest?
I have decided to do a series of "The Most..." and hopefully it satisfies your curiosity.
Most Gross Thing...
I have seen a lot of disgusting things. From pus coming out of every place imaginable, to limbs literally hanging on by a thread. Medicine is also full of weird and wonderful smells, warm placenta being right up there with gangrenous digits. I have quite a strong stomach; I can plan my next meal whilst operating, and enjoy a sandwich whilst in the labour ward. But hands down the grossest thing, the thing that makes me mock charge, or even vomit just a little bit in my mouth has to be The Diabetic Foot.
This belongs to a diabetic patient with poor sugar control. Basically their foot becomes rotten and putrid and often requires amputation. You can smell the patient even before entering a ward. They usually come into the hospital with a checkers packet tied around their offending limb, and you just know what is awaiting you under the wrap of plastic. The absolutely cherry on top, and the gag factor for me is... MAGGOTS! Yip, they often have maggots in the wound. The maggots actually make the wound cleaner as they eat all the dead tissue and leave the tissue that is viable behind.
Warning! If you have a weak stomach, do not scroll down!
And now imagine the smell!