Desert Island Drugs

Who’s up for Desert Island Drugs?

Few of us, if any, will ever find ourselves guests on that stalwart of the Radio 4 Sunday morning schedule, “Desert Island Discs’, but we can all imagine what it might be like to be marooned on a small island without an adequate drug supply – some may even be able to picture that particular scenario on a larger island, one perhaps somewhere in the North Sea.

So if you could have just eight drugs with you on that island, what would they be? Don’t forget you can take a book with you (I’ll give you the BNF and the complete works of Helen Stokes-Lampard), and a luxury item too (It must have no practical use though, so no suggesting an unnecessary locum, booked at the last minute, for your duty doctor day).

I’ll get the ball rolling with my choices:

Not all drugs are associated with special occasions in one’s life – some just become part of the furniture, they’re like good friends without which life just wouldn’t be the same. In this category then, of drugs I just couldn’t do without, would come Ibuprofen, Omeprazole and, of course, Methadone.

Then there are drugs that are linked to particular holidays – Cinnarizine (recalling a wonderful family vacation to France, or at least the memorable pre-holiday channel crossing) and Mefloquine (taken for that once in a lifetime trip to Africa which changed how I thought about things in ways I didn’t expect).

My next choice would be infant paracetamol. I had an idyllic childhood and nothing conjures up memories of those happy days better than the memories of being sat on my mother’s knee with the pain of a bulging tympanic membrane throbbing in my ear and the taste of a plastic spoon in my mouth.

Drugs have helped me through the bad times too, times when I thought the tears would never end. It was then that Roaccutane was there to dry my eyes.

And finally, a medication recalling the good days. Nitrous Oxide was the drug my wife and I shared surreptitiously whilst the midwife nipped out of the delivery suite in the hours prior to the birth of our first daughter. How we laughed…and laughed…and laughed…and laughed.

My luxury would be print outs of my patients’ contact with the 111 service. They contain no information of any practical use but would provide paper with which I could indulge myself in a spot of Origami.

My book would be any medical text book. Never having got round to studying one before, it’d be great to finally have the time to devote to reading one. And they tend to be quite thick so, being a little deficient in the feet and inches stakes, it’d come in handy for reaching up high.

And lastly, what if I could only save one drug from the waves, what would it be? Well the Methadone of course, though the excuse ‘lost at sea’ would be a novel one I could try using when trying to get additional supplies early.

Over to you! Play now for fun, as we may all be playing for real soon.

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