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Addiction (For Love of a Stump)

Wed, Jan 16, 2002 00:17AM -0600

I suppose this is the kind of demented entertainment I'm paying $50,000/year for. Yup, this is the sort of thing they teach those aspiring to the art of medicine:

Word of the day: acrotomophilia

For those who are too lazy to click the link (or on a 56k connection--I feel your pain), an acrotomophiliac is someone who has a fetish for amputees. I know as a clinician I'm not supposed to be judgemental and all, but, oh my god, are people weird. Today's lecturer was talking about how some narcissistic acrotomophiliacs will wrap a torniquet around their leg until it gets gangrenous, get taken to the emergency room, and masturbate right after getting an amputation, having the best orgasms of their lives. And how some acrotomophiliacs try to frequent the medical records departments of hospitals so that they can try to glean phone numbers of amputees.

Now, on to a totally unrelated matter (except for the fact that it is also something I've learned in med school). I used to wonder about how anyone could ever get so addicted to something that they'd be willing to stab themselves with a needle, puncture a vein, and possibly risk getting viral hepatitis, AIDS, or subacute bacterial endocarditis, but that was before I learned what a powerful substance opium and its derivatives are. I mean think about all those who run miles at a time, even in the infrafreezing cold, even when suffering from intense bodily pain. You know it's not just about getting into shape. It's all about the endorphins, baby. I think I'm seriously addicted. If I don't go for my semi-daily 20 minute run every day (Oh yes, I am terribly out of shape. Twenty minutes is more than enough to fuck me up at this stage) I start getting all edgy and short-tempered. I just need that fix. I mean, you should look at me now. I'm all calm and sedate with a huge smile on my face. Nothing better than endogenous narcotic substances. If I can only figure out how to get myself to secrete ananandamide, I'll be all set.

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