Clinical Challenges

Case A 48-year-old woman presents with several red lesions that are extremely pruritic. They are scattered haphazardly on the back of her leg. A few of the lesions are still smooth nodules, but others are now excoriations; she just can’t stop scratching them no matter how hard she tries. She estimates they appeared nearly a month ago. She reports a history of atopic dermatitis, but “this doesn’t feel like the same thing.” View the photo and consider what your diagnosis and next steps would be. Resolution of the case isRead More
The patient is a 26-year-old man who presents after 3 days of palpitations. He denies any chest pain, shortness of breath, diaphoresis, fever, or dizziness. He does use home oxygen (2 L/min), but denies any new shortness of breath. Upon exam, you find: General: Alert and oriented X 3 Lungs: Clear to auscultation bilaterally Cardiovascular: Regular and tachycardic without murmur, rub, or gallop Abdomen: Soft and nontender without rigidity, rebound, or guarding Extremities: No pain or swelling, pulses are 2+ and equal in all 4 extremities View the ECG andRead More
The patient is a 9-year-old boy who was brought in by his parents with right knee pain. He reports that he twisted it while reenacting Star Wars battles in the backyard with friends. His parents did not witness the injury. View the image taken (Figure 1) and consider what your diagnosis and next steps would be. Resolution of the case is described on the next page.  Read More
A 40-year-old woman visits your urgent care center several days after first noticing a rash of pruritic smooth papules on her trunk and intertriginous areas. She reports that she had been spending a lot of time in the pool with her children before they returned to school. Now she also has a fever and swollen glands, and complains of general malaise. View the photo and consider what your diagnosis and next steps would be. Resolution of the case is described on the next page.Read More
A 42-year-old woman with a history of anxiety presents, complaining of intermittent palpitations over the past 2 weeks. She says she has not taken any medication and denies chest pain, shortness of breath, diaphoresis, fever, or dizziness. Upon exam, you find: General: Alert and oriented X 3 Lungs: Clear to auscultation bilaterally Cardiovascular: Regular and tachycardic without murmur, rub, or gallop Abdomen: Soft and nontender without rigidity, rebound, or guarding Extremities: No pain or swelling, pulses are 2+ and equal in all 4 extremities View the ECG and consider whatRead More
The patient is a 25-year-old male who presents with pain over the distal phalanx of the middle finger. He says he hit it with a hammer while hanging a picture frame in his new apartment a short while ago. Pain is evident upon palpation over the distal phalanx of the middle finger, but there are no cuts or breaks in the skin. Neurovascular status is intact. View the image taken (Figure 1) and consider what your diagnosis and next steps would be. Resolution of the case is described on theRead More
Case A 30-year-old woman visited urgent care complaining of a burning sensation on her tongue. At first, she had blamed it on a spicy meal, but the feeling didn’t go away and now she feels as though she isn’t able to taste food as usual. Looking back, she recalls that over a month ago she noticed a white plaque on her tongue. However, that had had disappeared within a day so she hadn’t thought much of it. View the photo and consider what your diagnosis and next steps would be.Read More
Case The patient is a 73-year-old male smoker who complains that he has had intermittent palpitations for the past 2 weeks. He denies chest pain, diaphoresis, fever, or dizziness. He uses home oxygen, 2 L/min, but denies any new shortness of breath. Upon exam, you find: General: Alert and oriented x 3 Lungs: Scattered minimal wheezing, which is symmetric Cardiovascular: Regular and tachycardic without murmur, rub, or gallop Abdomen: Soft and nontender without rigidity, rebound, or guarding Extremities: No pain or swelling, pulses are 2+ and equal in all fourRead More