Been & Going

[Lessons From The TV People] Diagnose Me

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Let me back up. I was catching up on some random Uverse offerings on my DVR the other night when I went down the TLC black hole. You see, I had gotten pissed off at a History Channel show about Medusa. Yeah, Medusa didn’t just offend Athena and that’s why she was turned into a monster. Poseidon raped the virgin priestess in the temple and Athena blamed her! Can you believe that? I was furious! Then on top of all of that, we are supposed to root for Perseus to cut her head off? That’s some bullshit right there. Thanks, History Channel, for forever changing my viewings of Clash of the Titans. Team Medusa all the way.

Go get 'em, girl!

Go get ’em, girl!

Anyway, my anger was such that I turned to TLC. That says something doesn’t it? If you don’t understand, just know that TLC is the home of Hoarders, My 600-lb Life, Breaking Amish, Kate Plus Eight, the creepy Duggar Family show, makeover shows, plus many others that don’t qualify for TLC’s original moniker The Learning Channel. However, this particular night I did luck into some shows that were very educational. Just not what I expected to learn on a Wednesday evening. I caught the tail end of I Still Didn’t Know I Was Pregnant. This follows a woman who thought she had food poisoning but instead gave birth. And if the title wasn’t a tip off: this is not the first time it has happened. Man, if I was her, I would assume every little ache or pain was another pregnancy. “My neck is stiff. I must have slept on it—I’M GOING TO HAVE A BABY!”


“I can’t get to my Post Its!”

After Wow, That Burrito I Just Had Is Kicking ended came the show Diagnose Me. Diagnose Me is about mysterious illnesses that are misdiagnosed for longer than necessary before these poor people actually get cured.  The first story on this episode was about a woman who had dizzy spells that led to mysterious symptoms that made it seem like she was possessed by the devil. She would pace and yell and repeat what people said like an annoying ten-year-old and knock trays out of nurses’ hands. But what really concerned her father was all the Post Its in her apartment. Because that is the first sign of a demon possession. You know when you are in the office supply closet and you are tempted to take those pink sticky notes? That’s the devil working through you.

Well, spoiler: it wasn’t a demon possession. Her brain was producing too much of a certain antibody.  It only took three false diagnoses before her doctor decided to “do some research”. Thank you, TLC, for teaching me to tell my doctor to Google.

The second story was about A WOMAN WITH FINGERNAILS ON HER FACE.

On her face.


On her scalp, too.


Finger. Nails. On. Her. Face.

Before I get further into the Fingernail Face, I would like to give a shout out to the actress playing Shayna. The Demon Possessed Post It Lady had more action but Reenactment Shayna really got to the meat of the role. She nailed it.

Because she had fingernails on her face.

Poor Shayna went for over a year with this condition before it was properly diagnosed. One doc thought it was reaction to a steroid for an asthma attack. Another thought it was psoriasis. While a

Fingernails On Her Face!

Fingernails On Her Face!

third did a bunch of biopsies because of suspected lymphoma. Wrong. Wrong. Wrong. Meanwhile, Shayna became a recluse. Her mother tried to get her out by taking to the store. That didn’t go well. An old woman saw her and said, “Oh my goodness. What is she doing out? She could get us sick!” So intolerant, these Reenactment Old Ladies.

Finally, Shayna was taken to John Hopkins to meet with the Medical Mysteries Team (Assemble!). They looked at her and came to this conclusion: “Hey, it looks like fingernails growing out of the hair follicles. Fingernails are made of keratin like hair is.  We should look at the number of cells in each follicle. Perhaps she is producing more keratin than normal.” And that’s what happened. Shayna was given some Vitamin A medicine that is normally used for severe acne and now she is 60% back to normal. And I’m 60% sure I’m going to have reoccurring Fingernail Face nightmares.

Diagnose Me is on TLC where you can see other educational shows like Grandmother Lovers.

(Confession: I saw a bit of that one. I’m not proud. It was about two guys in their thirties who are sexually attracted to women over 60. I swear they even had a scene of one of them going to visit an old flame’s grave. Classic.)