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September 17, 1982

argh... rumph... zzz... A Plea for the Medical Précis

JAMA. 1982;248(11):1300. doi:10.1001/jama.1982.03330110014004

The jangling ring of a bedside telephone pierces the silence of a physician's bedroom at 2:35 AM.

Physician Caller:  Phil? How are you? Were you asleep?

Physician Sleeper:  Hello. This is Dr Warren.

Physician Caller:  Phil? Phil? Can you hear me? You sound awful! Do you have a cold?

Physician Sleeper:  Oh, Ron. No, I don't have a cold. What time is it?

Physician Caller:  Listen, Phil, you remember Mrs Carlyle, the car dealer's wife: She has an aunt visiting here who has a friend in Mt Pleasant. You know, Mt Pleasant was where the nursing service had their outing, ffrr..., phragh, sss....

Physician Sleeper:  Ron, what is the matter? (Lapsing into unfocused somnolence, making a conscious effort to find out who he is, where he is, and what is being said to him.)

Physician Caller:  Phil, are you sure you don't have a cold? You sound all stuffed up.