Patient worried about toxic shock syndrome visits urgent care center

I work at an urgent care center every other weekend, where I see a lot of young women for female issues. It is never a dull time, and I often name my weekends after my most memorable patients.

On this particular weekend, I saw a 50-year-old woman with a chief complaint of a lost tampon. According to the history she provided, she went to her obstetrician and gynecologist for her annual exam. The exam was supposedly completed and after dressing, she met him in his office. He told her that he was unable to complete the exam, because she had a retained tampon. He sent her home with instructions to use some cream daily to help the tampon fall out.

My question to her was why he did not remove it? He is an OB-GYN. She came to me because she started to develop some viral type symptoms and thought that perhaps she was developing toxic shock syndrome. After careful examination, I could not locate a tampon. I explained to the patient that there were only so many places that it could be hidden. I sent her home with treatment for a bacterial infection and instructions to get a new OB-GYN.

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