Doctors, nurses, and other medical professionals see their fair share of crazy patients every day, but there have to be some that stick out over the rest, right? Well, look no further.
A Reddit thread recently asked those in the medical industry to share the craziest patients they have ever dealt with at the hospital, doctor's office, or ambulance ride. And after reading all of these stories, it's easy to see why these patients are so memorable. These doctors talked about patients who deserved being in a mental institution, those who belong there, and some who are too crazy to even be treated. Take a look at some of the most insane stories we could find. All posts have been edited for clarity.
There Was Nothing They Could Do
“I work in a pediatric hospital as a nursing assistant. I also work in the pediatric E.R. on a pretty regular basis, where I clean beds, transport patients, and care for patients.
When you go into an emergency ward, you typically get triaged first and then you’re brought back later. Sometimes, people are able to walk past and just gain access without seeing a nurse or anyone else. Usually, they’re just walked back out into the waiting room.
One day, I was standing by a desk watching some going ons near the hallway where patients are brought back, when this couple approached me carrying a carseat with the blanket pulled all the way over, covering up this baby. These people looked like they were on something and reeked of smoke, but that’s a pretty normal occurrence where I work. They asked me if this was the emergency room, I told them yes and asked if they had seen a nurse yet. They said no, so I took them back out to the triage nurse and went back to chilling.
Twenty seconds later, that same nurse came running back with the carseat in hand, with an obviously dead BLUE AND GRAY baby. I’m talking Smurf blue and ivory. So everyone ran into the trauma bay, but this kid was stiff as a board. Like, so stiff they couldn’t even open the mouth to attempt to intubate. As it turns out, the nurse in triage asked what they were coming in for today, the dad said, ‘He stopped breathing.’ That was when she pulled the blanket down and saw him and ran him back.
I don’t think I’ve ever felt more horrified in my life after seeing all of that unfold. The nurse in charge that day started giving me lip, asking why I didn’t get anyone sooner, but these people didn’t look visibly upset and gave no indication that anything was wrong, so how was I supposed to know? Luckily, everyone else stood up for me, and I was advised in the future to always just take a look at every kid I see that’s brought in through improper channels.
It is standard protocol for the police to show up and question the parents in any situation involving infant death. So they were taken into the consultation room and never seen again. The parents claimed to have found the kid an hour and a half before stumbling in. Rigor takes about four to six hours to set in. So yeah, nothing could be done.”
His Dad Couldn’t Believe What He Saw
“My dad was going to school for nursing and he had to stand some shifts in a hospital. He told me one story where they brought in a mentally disturbed woman who was behaving violently. She kept on flailing about and then started attacking herself.
At one point, he said she literally clawed out her eyeball. It was dangling out of the socket by the optic nerve and everyone was trying to restrain her so they could help but one of her arms broke free so she reached up, grabbed her eyeball, and squished it.”
It Took The Entire Hospital To Keep This Guy Down
“I work the night shift in transportation at a hospital. I just move people around for the most part, but one morning at around 6 a.m., I got a call to take a patient from the ICU to CT Scan. I get these daily, and they are usually uneventful. Most ICU patients are totally out of it and don’t really move or talk, so it’s generally pretty simple.
I got up to the room and the guy was good. He was trying to move a bit, but for the most part, he was sitting still in his bed. The nurse gave him some fentanyl just to make sure he stayed still down in scan.
When we finally got into the scan, we laid his bed flat. He started freaking out and trying to move. So the nurse gave him more fentanyl which, again, calmed him enough to get him on to the CT table. After we got him there he was still trying to move his arms around so we tied him up in his sheet and then put the straps on the table around him. Those things are strong, most patients can’t move at all with that all around them. Yet, somehow, this guy was moving with no problem, trying to sit up.
The CT table was only about two-feet wide, so it was EXTREMELY easy to fall off if you moved around. We were holding him down, while the nurse was getting a syringe full of Ativan, which should have been able to knock him out. She finally got it into him and after another five minute of holding him down, he was fighting back even more. The nurse had ran out of anything to give him, so she had to go to a machine to get more out. Eventually, the CT tech said forget it and called security.
Within 30 seconds, there were 10 people in the room. We kept giving him Ativan, because he really, really needed the CT to see if the bleeding in his brain was getting any better. After another 30 minutes more of giving him more medication, we finally decided it wasn’t going to happen. We got him back on his bed and took him back up to ICU and restrained him. Later that day, they tried putting him to sleep but he stopped breathing so they couldn’t get the scan done.
The next morning, I had to take him back and the same thing happened, except this time I had to call someone else because my shift was over, and they don’t allow us to hit overtime. I think he was in there for another 30 minutes after I left.
It turned out it wasn’t his brain, but withdrawals.”
She Could Just Tell This Patient Was Going To Be Trouble
“I used to draw blood at a local hospital. I worked with the in-patients, so I’d take my cart around and get the blood samples that were ordered by doctors and nurses, then bring them back down to the lab.
One morning, I had a draw on the cardiac unit. I went upstairs and walked into this patient’s room. On the bed was a woman in her 60s. Her son and daughter were in the room with her.
Based on the labs I was supposed to get, it was obvious she was just recently admitted into the hospital. But already, the room had that hospital smell – dirty hair, body odor, urine. This woman was filthy long before she got there. She was morbidly obese, had a beard, and was definitely one of the most disgusting patients I had encountered during my time in the hospital.
I walked into the room and said, ‘Hi, I’m with the lab. I’m here to get some blood samples that your doctor wanted tested to see how you’re doing.’
PATIENT: ‘WHAT DID SHE JUST SAY?’
DAUGHTER: ‘Oh, Mom, be nice. She just needs some blood from you.’
Based on the kid’s reaction, it was painfully obvious that Mom was always incredibly rude and yelling. The patient continued screaming and swearing at me. I decided to suck it up, so I got my tubes and needle and everything ready. I gave the tourniquet a stretch, and leaned forward to put it around her arm.
PATIENT: ‘YOU BETTER NOT GRAB MY CHEST, YOU MORON. I’LL HIT YOU SO HARD!’
Just to clarify, I’m a young woman. Not threatening at all. And she thought I was going to fondle her.
At that point, I was fed up with her screaming and cursing me. Without saying a word, I just picked up all my things, and walked out of the room. I flagged down that patient’s nurse. The daughter came running after me and caught up with me just as the nurse walked up. I said, to both of them, ‘Sorry, I won’t be drawing her blood today. I don’t get paid enough to be verbally abused and threatened.’
The nurse said she understood and the daughter was trying to convince me to come back. I guess they had been waiting on labs for a while, since I wasn’t the first tech in that room.”
This Guy Was A Psychologist’s Worst Nightmare
“My professor is a psychologist who specializes in personality disorders and addiction.
He was working at a mental health ward some years back and there was a schizophrenic patient who, everyday in the ‘day room,’ would sit on the couch and whip his jimmy out and start to pleasuring himself. Each time this happened, the nurses would take him to the ‘big bad’ padded cell.
This happened every single day, until my professor suggested that this wasn’t punishing him – he wanted to be in that padded cell. And it turns out he was right – the patient was trying to get in the cell to avoid the ‘bad people’ from getting him.
This same patient liked to taunt people. He was a big man – pushing 400, very tall, and stout. He knew this intimidated people. He was not gay, but he loved to go up to male workers and tell them how in love with them he was and how he was very interested in getting to know them better. He would do all of that with a smirk on his face.”
Who Would Do Such A Thing?
“This story will forever haunt me. I recently took care of a woman who was in her mid 40s, paraplegic, and also had a colostomy. A colostomy is a pouch that is attached to your colon from the outside of your body that catches your stool. These are for people that have serious issues with their gastrointestinal tract that require an alternative channel for feces to leave their body.
Well, this patient was a very sick lady to begin with, but she was also have strange infections originating from her colostomy site. She was to the point of sepsis, which again to simplify, is just not good.
It turned out that her husband was addicted to smack and needed money in the worst way, so he rented his wife out, meaning that people would pay to come over to their house and violate his wife in her stoma: the alternate site from which the feces left her body. We tested her stoma, and it was essentially crusted with dried good of the numerous guys who had taken advantage of her.
It is the most messed up scenario I’ve ever seen.”
Imagine Being In This Patient’s Shoes
“I’m a registered nurse on a medical and surgical floor, and when I had been off orientation for maybe two months, we had an autistic Alzheimer’s patient spend one night on my floor. Needless to say, he was an individual assignment. Now, this wouldn’t have been a fun assignment for anyone because he had a catheter that he was really unhappy about and he liked to swear. A lot. Unfortunately, the nurse that was assigned to this guy wasn’t the most patient or understanding nurse on Earth.
All night long, I could hear the two going back and forth:
PATIENT: ‘You witch, get this hose out of my junk! I have to pee.’
NURSE: ‘Please don’t yell at m., I don’t like that tone and I think that’s very rude to talk to people like that.’
PATIENT: ‘Get bent! I have to pee and you won’t let me.’
NURSE: ‘I’ve asked you already, please don’t swear at me.’
She does know that she’s not going to get very far with that approach, right?
Finally, after this had gone on for hours and I sat in the room to cover her break and couldn’t get him off the topic of his catheter, I called the doctors to explain the situation and asked if he even needed the catheter.
DOCTOR: ‘We would like to leave the catheter in overnight so that he can get some sleep and doesn’t have to get up for the bathroom.’
ME: ‘I don’t think that’s going to work. He’s convinced he has to void and has been very… vocal about the subject for the last five hours. I sat in to cover his nurse’s lunch and there was no distracting him from the catheter.’
If memory serves me right, I think he had a urological surgery, so it wouldn’t be too strange for him to have a catheter in for one night, so that could have contributed to her not questioning it. But I know that the nurse sitting in there also let herself get too distracted by the avalanche of profanity coming at her to even question whether the catheter was necessary. Either way, I wasn’t too impressed that the only reason the resident left the catheter in after surgery was because he thought he was doing the nurses a favor.
Fortunately, the doctor could hear the patient shouting in the background and decided that maybe it would be better for everybody if we took the hose out of the patient’s junk.”
Just A Normal Day At The Inner-City Hospital
“My mom is an intensive care nurse in a large metropolitan area.
There were two cousins involved in a gang shooting. Here’s the kicker: they were on opposite sides of the shooting. They were both admitted with multiple wounds and in critical condition. Their well acquainted families overran the ICU for days with heated arguments and fights. It all came to a head when one of the boys died. This sent a stampede of large emotional women down the hall to the other side of the family. It soon became an all out brawl between around 30 people – in an ICU at a hospital – that took many doctors and security guards to stop.
Here’s another gang related story. Two guys on one gang were in an SUV and were tagged in a drive by from an opposing gang. They were shot. They were both in the ER within hours. One died and the other was unconscious. Hours later, a rival gang member came to finish the job. He drove his Escalade through the ER, got out, walked over to the unconscious guy’s bed, and shot him once in the head. He got back in his car and backed out and left. I’m not sure if he was caught, but I’d be surprised if he wasn’t.
In any ICU in the United States, there is going to be an assortment of patients. My mom told me that the most common of which are extremely obese people, I’m talking upward of 500 pounds. One of the patients my mom sought after had been unable to was below the belt for some time and this resulted in an nasty case of gangrene. While my mom was not there for the initial draining, skin removal, or reduction of swelling, she did have to help place the guy’s balls in pockets cut into his thighs for safe keeping.”
Even This Seasoned Paramedic Was Shocked By What He Saw
“I am a paramedic. I got dispatched to a 40-year-old male in an ‘altered level of consciousness.’ No big deal, could be anything and it’s likely nothing.
I found a firefighter at the front door looking ill, which is never a good sign. As I made it halfway up the stairs, the unmistakable stench of feces hit me like a roundhouse. This was thick. The firefighter at the top of the stairs was pale and simply shook his head in my direction. I reached the hallway at the top of the stairs and turned to the one open door. There was poop everywhere.
With no exaggeration, it looked like eight people had been eating Wendy’s chili and painting the room with feces for days. My numb disbelief was shattered by a clearly distressed gay man’s voice: ‘Why aren’t you guys doing anything?’
I was in the doorway and could see the bed. There was a man in his birthday suit on a mattress covered in feces flailing back and forth in his mud-bath and mumbling incoherently. What happened next is hazy.
I vaguely remember exclaiming, ‘Oh my god,’ and searching for someone to take the initiative. My whole job is to get people to a hospital, preferably still alive. This poor poop-covered specimen needed to be lifted, carried, hauled, and rolled downstairs onto a gurney and into the ambulance. Stepping forward and frustrated, I pled with the patient to please sit up and show me that he was able to follow directions. Shockingly, he shot upright instantly. In the same instant, poo shot out of his left lower abdomen toward my boots from what I realized was a colostomy bag hole. I watched it ooze out, turned toward the bathroom and began to dry heave. The third firefighter had already assumed the position and was blowing chunks in a toilet, which I might add was covered in feces.
We got him out of the residence and to the hospital where they ‘saved him’ with antibiotics.”
They Now Sell Frozen Yogurt, It Was That Bad
“I worked in the dementia unit of a nursing home for six months. My first day, there was a woman there who had previously been in a mental hospital, and when I went to go talk to her, she pointed out the window and said, ‘See those kids out there? Aren’t they beautiful?’ There were no kids, but I went along with it. Then she said, ‘I didn’t mean to burn them. I didn’t mean to kill my children.’
A couple of weeks later I had a man that was COMPLETELY covered in feces. This happens often in dementia units, and a lot of the men are too embarrassed to let you clean them up. I hadn’t learned this yet and was technically still training, and this man was too big for me to help him on my own. A more experienced aide came in with me, and he got so mad that we were trying to help him that he tried to deck me in the jaw, but I ducked and he started choking the girl next to me.
Another woman would sit in the corner of the dining facility with a cup of coffee and a box of tissues. She’d start to line up every tissue perfectly, then start screaming that she needed help. She’d start banging her coffee cup on the table, then when you asked her what was wrong, she wouldn’t know what she wanted, but wouldn’t let you get her food either. She yelled at everyone, and would get extremely violent. She threw hot tomato soup at me, pulled my hair, pinched and twisted every part of me she could reach, punched, and kicked.
My last week working there, a woman fell out of her wheel chair to the floor, and was passed out and a bunch of aides rushed to try and help her. She’d gone into a seizure, and the nurses tried to sedate her afterward because she was violent with everyone and in danger of hurting herself. When I was called in to help, I was told to hold her down on a bed because she kept finding ways to get cuts all over her body. I couldn’t hold her down at all, this woman had brute strength, even after all the sedatives.
Needless to say, every time I came home from that job, I would be covered in excrement, bodily fluids, bruises, food, cuts, and even teeth marks. I now sell frozen yogurt.”
Who Knew A Junkie Could Run Like That?
“When I was working at a hospital as a nursing assistant, I had a patient on a medical hold while she was detoxing. She was 23 years old and weighed 89 pounds. For three days, I was her ‘personal safety attendant,’ which meant that she was my only patient and I sat in her room for my entire shift and made sure she stayed there and was safe.
On the final night of her hold, she was extremely anxious. She kept telling me she was supposed to be moving to Michigan that day and her boyfriend didn’t know she was in the hospital and would leave without her. She didn’t want to be at the hospital anymore and was trying to manipulate her way out of the medical hold. She kept changing to her street clothes from her hospital gown multiple times throughout my shift because she thought she would be leaving.
One of the times she got up to her closet to change, yet again, I was charting and let her out of my sight for 15 seconds. That was all it took. I finished charting and looked around the corner and saw her running out of her room and down the hallway. This began the chase. Our hospital unit was the only unit that was directly connected to the parking ramp, through a staff door that was unlocked during normal business hours. She sprinted through our unit and out this back door to the parking ramp. She ran down four flights of stairs and got out on the third floor, then ran down the middle of the ‘road’ of the parking ramp. She stopped running and put her thumb out to hitch rides from the hospital visitors that were driving past her.
At this point, one of my fellow nursing assistants who saw us and followed us as well, caught up to me and we were discussing how to get her back to the hospital. Our Vocera pagers were out of range, but fortunately, I had my cell phone on me and passed it off to her to call security. I walked up to the patient and tried to convince her to stay at the hospital – she wouldn’t have any of it. We walked the rest of the way down the parking ramp together, where three security guards were waiting for us at the exit. They approached us and tried to convince her to go back to her room. They were actually successful, and we were about to enter the hospital, when one of the security guards touched her to guide her through the door.
That set her off and she sprinted off again, out the exit of the parking ramp, across a busy street, and through the neighborhoods across the street. All five of use were chasing her. One of the guards finally got hands on her and took her to the ground. We all walked her back up to her hospital room. The police were called, the doctor who put her on medical hold was called, and she ended up being transferred to the local mental institution for a week-long detox.”
They Were Prepared For Everything But This
“I work in an operating room and once had a teenage patient who weighed 300 pounds and was a clinical psychotic. This kid was known to be violent when he woke up from anesthesia, so we were prepared with four burly guys surrounding the table at the end of the surgery.
When he opened his eyes, they got really wide and then he started crying. Not just whimpering, but full on lip quivering and tears. It broke my heart. So, as I was standing near the head of the table, I leaned down and asked him, ‘Dude, what do you need?’ to which he responded through those shudders you get when you cry-talk, ‘I JUST WANT A HUUUUUUUG!’
I reached down, gave him a big ole bear hug, and he quieted right down and relaxed.”
I Don’t Think She’s Sleeping
“I worked in a hospital kitchen for 10 years. I worked pretty much all jobs within the kitchen, but the only one that got me out of it was the tray passer. I don’t remember the floor, probably not relevant, but it was a typical day passing trays. I knocked on the closed door and introduced myself. Waited for a reply… Nothing. This is typical though because some patients were sleeping or hard of hearing. As the room had no infection precautions or other signage on the door I entered and again introduced myself to the elderly woman in the bed. No response, obviously sleeping. I put the tray down on her table and noticed that she was a little too asleep, shall we say. Dead as a door nail is more like it.
This was not my first time seeing a dead body, but it was at work. Not a big deal really, but still, come on. I grabbed the tray, left the room and closed the door. As I was exiting, a nurse asked if I had just gone in there. I was a little put off that there was no sign on the door, and I responded in kind, showing my frustration with the lack of follow through. She was the nursing supervisor and knew what was in that room. Needless to say, I heard the nurse getting an earful for not following protocol.”