Merry Funtabulously Frivolous Friday Five 354

Just when you thought your brain could unwind on a Friday, you realise that it would rather be challenged with some good old fashioned medical trivia FFFF, introducing Funtabulously Frivolous Friday Five 354 – Christmas tradition edition.

Don’t forget to explore previous FFFF Christmas editions

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Question 1

For those in the Northern Hemisphere, it gets a little chilly over Christmas.

What is the lowest recorded temperature in a human who has survived?

Reveal the funtabulous answer

13.7°C (56.7°F)

Swedish radiologist Dr Anna Elisabeth Johansson Bågenholm survived an accidental hypothermia accident at age 29. She was skiing in Norway and fell into a stream. Her body was trapped under ice, but she found an air pocket. By the time rescuers could break through the ice, she had been in the water for 80 minutes and was unconscious without a pulse. 2hrs 15 minutes later once on ECMO, staff managed to get a heartbeat. She was 35 days on a ventilator and returned to work 140 days after the accident with no signs of any brain damage.

At the time, she was studying to become an orthopaedic surgeon and it would appear her hypothermia accident made her smarter, as she later trained to become a radiologist.


Question 2

Christmas is a busy time of year in the hospital but it also comes with benefits. Vast tins of biscuits and early on Christmas day workload seems to briefly reduce. So with this festive little break on the horizon…

What is the best biscuit to dunk in your tea?

Reveal the funtabulous answer

An Oat biscuit according to the DUNC study.

Authors of the DUNC study conclude that a healthcare worker can enjoy a cup of tea and a nutritional biscuit in a 10-minute break period.

The optimal drinking temp was 61°C (141.8°F), achieved at 330-450 seconds with 40ml of milk. The oat biscuit faired to have the highest nutritional content and was least likely to break.


Question 3

It’s getting close to putting out some treats for the reindeer. If Rudolph were to sustain a ‘carrot stick‘ fracture where would it be and what underlying disease would he have?

Reveal the funtabulous answer

Cervical Spine and ankylosing spondylitis.

Carrot Stick fractures (less festively referred to as ‘chalk stick’ fractures) usually occur through disco-vertebral junctions in the lower cervical or upper thoracic spine. When a spine is fused, like in ankylosing spondylitis, the fused columns act as lever points and can result in significant and unstable fractures from minimal trauma.

Rudolph better be careful if he has AS when landing on the roof on Christmas Eve.

Case courtesy of Matt Skalski, Radiopaedia.org, rID: 83455
Case courtesy of Chris O’Donnell, Radiopaedia.org, rID: 19549

Question 4

What does “Bah! Humbug!” actually mean?

Reveal the funtabulous answer

Nonsense; to mislead, deceive or hoax.

Ebenezer Scrooge most famously shouts “Humbug” throughout Charles Dickens “A Christmas Carol” first published in 1843. But Dickens did not use the term Humbug as ‘I hate Christmas’.

A christmas carol HUMBUG 2

Humbug originally appeared in the writing in a 1750 issue of The Students, or the Oxford and Cambridge Monthly Miscellany, where it was a word very much in vogue with the people of taste and fashion. See all the cool kids were using it but no meaning was attached, cool and rad man!

1750 The student origin of the word HUMBUG

Later, it was referred to as a hoax or someone forming a trick. In keeping with Scrooge’s belief that Christmas was trying to swindle money from the rich, he must have felt the whole season was one big jest after another.


Question 5

Which of these luxury treats is most likely to bring on an attack of gout?

  1. A portion of Stilton
  2. A fresh lobster canapé
  3. A glass of port.

Reveal the funtabulous answer

The lobster

Lobster contains the highest level of purines

… and finally, festive quotes:

Seeing is believing, but sometimes the most real things in the world are the things we can’t see.

The Conductor, The Polar Express
Visit one of our favourite websites: theawkwardyeti.com

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Funtabulously Frivolous Friday Five

Dr Neil Long BMBS FACEM FRCEM FRCPC. Emergency Physician at Kelowna hospital, British Columbia. Loves the misery of alpine climbing and working in austere environments (namely tertiary trauma centres). Supporter of FOAMed, lifelong education and trying to find that elusive peak performance.

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