Pectoriloquy |

Fibroelastosis Filk (to the tune of “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious”) FREE TO VIEW

Faith Anne Hurley, MA, History
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Editor’s Note: The author writes, “As a person with a rare condition, I have had to educate myself about cardiopulmonary medicine so that I can communicate effectively with my caregivers. This piece of filk, which puts new words to a familiar tune, expresses the struggles and comedies of medical jargon from the patient’s point of view.” Faith Anne Hurley is an historian, teacher, writer, and a heart patient. Writing and laughing help her cope with the struggles of chronic illness.

Reproduction of this article is prohibited without written permission from the American College of Chest Physicians. See online for more details.

Chest. 2012;142(6):1685. doi:10.1378/chest.11-3207
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When meeting new cardiologists, it’s frankly quite absurd
to have to speak their dialect and say the perfect word.
To tell them what my problem is, although it sounds obscene
this is the only way to say precisely what I mean:
Ventricular endocardial fibroelastosis!
Say it and high blood pressure would not seem so ferocious!
As names go, compared to most, it’s really quite atrocious!
When residents are chatting, merely “heart stuff” would suffice
but once they hear this word, they have to use it once or twice.
I’m sure my skilled internist must have grasped it in a jiff,
but when she wrote it down then the poor nurse saw hieroglyphs.
Ventricular endocardial fibroelastosis!
If you say it clearly then you really sound precocious,
but it may be enough to give your doctor a neurosis.
It’s sadly hard to carve upon a medic alert tag
and so I have to write it down and put it in my bag.
But at least I have a way to keep myself amused
by making younger doctors all look really quite confused.
Ventricular endocardial fibroelastosis!




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