The "chief complaint" is the exact stated reason someone presents to medical care. After the patient is checked in, this is what pops up on our tracking board (with varying amounts of faithfulness to exactly what the patient says, usually indicated with quotations). All of these are from the Peds ER and all are 100% true.
  1. "Wanted to come to ER"
    This was the reason for an ambulance ride at 3am on a Saturday. When asked what brought them in, the 2yo child started clapping his hands and chanting "Hospital! Hospital!" He got a popsicle and went home.
  2. Patient is too high to be in central booking
  3. "Ate dog poop"
  4. "Need to find out if daughter is having sex"
  5. "My baby daddy STD positive"
  6. Billy Ruben
    Bilirubin. This was a bilirubin (a protein in the blood) check. And my favorite misheard chief complaint maybe ever.
  7. "Every time I eat Pizza Boli I throw up. I ate Pizza Boli last night"
  8. "Just wondering if TB is contagious"
  9. Beanie baby in stool
    This child ate a beanie baby. His poop was filled with tiny styrofoam balls.
  10. "I think I got shot."