I Found The Key!

As a paramedic, I have encountered more adipose than I ever imagined possible. I suppose prior to joining EMS, I was always aware of obesity as an epidemic, but I had no reason to encounter many downright spherically shaped people. I never expected to voluntarily hold employment at which I not only get to see the morbidly obese regularly, but I also encounter some of the unexpected byproducts of vast girth.

Today, I treated a woman of advanced mass with a myriad of health problems. In the process of rearranging some of her bountiful tissue to place leads for an accurate ECG reading, and I found under her left breast…a key. A single, isolated key.

I said, “Ma’am, this looks like the kind of thing you’re going to want to hold onto,” while handing it to her. Her face lit up. “This is my house key! I’ve been looking for this! Thank you!” I’m certainly glad I was able to help my patient with a problem, but entrapped key extraction was not a service I had anticipated providing.

I understand the concept of using one’s breasts as an excellent place for storage. I tuck my pepper spray in my cleavage when I go for long jogs, and I’m not above sticking some cash in there when I don’t want to carry my wallet. Typically, one also needs a bra to assist with this kind of storage.My patient needed not be limited by such troublesome clothing. She could store, and subsequently lose her house key in her bosom without trouble.

I’ve given it a fair amount of thought, and I still can’t decide if this is a pro or a con to morbid obesity. On one hand, you can store things without even using the elasticity of a bra, but you also run the risk of losing necessary objects. I’m completely ambivalent.


  • Travis Cryan says:

    HAHAHAHA… the first time you encounter this phenomenon it is truly memorable. I have discovered TV remotes, sandwiches, chicken wings, etc. Of course the worst was the roach… 

  • Deeann says:

    I had a woman that had half a sandwich in a plastic sandwich baggy tucked under her left breast. When I discovered it and removed it she states “oh, that’s my lunch”, takes it from me and places it under her right breast. I still can’t eat ham and cheese

  • Jay says:

    On my EMT practicum we went for a large woman with chest pain. While going to put on the 12-Lead, I found a piece of food rotting under her left flab roll, which had caused some necrosis of the surrounding tissue. Thus the chest pain.

    I don’t know where that fits into any chest pain pneumonic, but I consider it part of my differential diagnosis now.


    • parapup says:

      BWAHAHAHAHA!  Next time I teach the paramecia, I’ll be sure to let them know tissue necrosis secondary to food degradation should be included in their differentials.  🙂

  • David Mootoo says:

    Been there, done that! Not keys, though…found a remote control, and one time, a couple of casino chips…weird.

    • parapup says:

      Casino chips?  I’m going to start keeping tabs on the weird shit located.  I had a friend who found a nutter butter and a fork.  These things amuse me. Thanks for reading, David!

  • marie-nicole says:

    I once had a mobidly obese patient who was barely conscious, in septic shock.  After having 3 EMS crews and 5 fire truck respond,  we finally extricated the gentleman from his dwelling.  While in the process of moving him,  a previously unfound abscess bursted releasing a river of puss down the left side of his abdomen. I am sure I don’t need to describe the smell that came with that!  Once in hospital,  after further investigation,  we discovered that the patient had a face cloth stuck in between skin folds,  which had obviously caused the gigantic abscess, and massive infection.  When the patient was asked how this happened,  he claimed he had tried to clean himself up after spilling coffee all over his torso almost 3 weeks prior.  He was now remembering that he might have had misplaced that face cloth…   

    • parapup says:

      Man, the gross-itude here is out of control.  I’ll never look at my wash cloth the same.  I’ll be sure to keep up with mine if I ever become morbidly obese!  Thanks for reading, Marie-Nicole!

  • Kris from Canada says:

    “unexpected byproducts of vast girth” gawd that is funny! Glad to see a new blog post! Thanks for the great laugh!

  • Anonymous says:

    I found $634 in a Crown Royal bag under a woman’s boob once.

    Same woman was the first and only patient I’ve ever had to administer glucose rectally.

    Neither experience was very pleasant.

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