the -itis identity crisis

So this is what it feels like
to be an imposter in the limelight,
taking credit for a red leg
without even having to beg!

Stasis dermatitis isn’t “sexy” I know,
it doesn’t make you go “whoa,”
but popularity never did guarantee success,
that’s why I’m here to clean up this mess.

“Admit to medicine for bilateral cellulitis…”
is the ED’s go-to anchoring bias
that created my -itis identity crisis,
I’m a wannabe pseudocellulitis!

My claim to fame is that I’m an imitator
I, too, cause dolor, tumor, calor, and rubor,
but IV Vancomycin won’t make me better
(cue a boring compression stocking lecture).

Normally I wouldn’t put up such a fuss,
a mistaken identity isn’t such a bust,
after all, it’s hard to compete with pus,
and avoiding TED hose is a plus.

But causing unnecessary admissions
and facilitating C. Diff transmission
isn’t exactly the legacy I envisioned,
so I’m calling out this imprecision.

For the next rash billed as “cellulitis,”
don’t be basic and order antibiotics.
Examine and take a careful history
to avoid a case of mistaken identity.

I’m critical, I know, I’m sorry
It’s hard being lumped in the “other” category,
I hope my words aren’t inflammatory
to overshadow the lesson of this story.

It’s really quite simple, I’ll repeat:
a bilateral cellulitis is a rare feat,
so think what else it could be
and maybe, you’ll spot me.

Yours truly,
V.S. Dermatitis

 

–last updated on 6/25/18–

 

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