A cardiologist said my wife has "what we call a student heart murmur." A private witticism?

His little joke, meaning, “This heart murmur is so loud/obvious even a student could spot it.”

Is this his own coinage, a cardio in-joke-term, or --entirely plausibly–a turn of phrase whenever obvious symptoms are presented?


You know, sorta like, “even a rookie knows (such and such)”.

Around here, the variation usually goes, “Even a McMaster student could hear that murmur”. :wink:

Thanks for quick reply. McMaster reference is lost on me, but I’m sure does the trick.

Maybe he reads this

But I guess its the sort of thing that happens when they describe murmur grades everywhere … "the last grade is the only one you will hear as a student… and not because none of your patients are 1 -5 … "

You cardiologist sounds like a real card.

I don’t know if it is still the case, but back when I fantasized about going to med school, McMaster had unique entry criteria. One didn’t actually have to have a science background to get into their medical school. Going by memory, you had to have organic chemistry (which back in my day was a second year university course - don’t know if that has changed), but otherwise, you could have a degree in anything. I have personally known a professional musician, for instance, who entered their medical school. So, among Southern Ontario doctors, McMaster is commonly the butt of jokes (good natured, I’m sure) because of this.

When I was a student buying my first stethoscope I was advised to get the best one I could afford because, as a student, I’d need it. The fellow said that as a fellow he could get by with a cheaper one. And that [our favorite cardiologist] didn’t need no stinking stethoscope. He talked to the patient, looked at the chest, and just knew.

I thought I got it, but it had nothing to do with McDonalds…

Our cardio already knew about the heart murmer/floppy valve thing, but he didn’t need no examination when he guessed my wife had flat feet.

I’ve repeatedly told the story of this flabbergasting non sequitur and his explanation of his psychic powers.

Prize TBD to whomever first says how he knew, or at least thought it was highly probable…
::leaves question hanging for suspense::

Also (having looked at cartoon–thanks!), notwithstanding all the riffing on loudness, is that grading really the only ways these are first-pass grouped? If so, how is pianissimo-to-fortissimo “scaled,” as it were, relative to, say, beeper thrums? Metric or rhythmic changes included also, right? Something about a “gunner” in the cartoon?

She was wearing a cop uniform?

Nope. Took me a moment…

Her valve (MVP?) is part of an Ehler-Danlos spectrum issue?

Her initials are F.F.F.F.?

Meh. I think DSeid nailed the prize.

Or Marfans. Was her maiden name Lincoln? Is she tall?

Sheesh. Every time I check in it’s Google-time. Nope, I don’t think so, thank God, based on (scary) pitchers and my reading…Those two symptoms of my wife can’t be necessary and sufficient for such a diagnosis, right?

But I now know the answer to my own initial query ::Hah! I am large, a multitude, a Teeming Million…::, because I got riled up about it: whether the doctor should’ve gotten a pass or got paid (a woman is most often addressed as Ms.), as well as so many people: how I was trapped by Mr. TV, the Ardens, those saps Mrs. Butt and Mrs. MSD–that hard-ass, and of course Countess VIII. I also learned the answer to my second, broader query, about what makes for a good listen-to, besides pp–ff: I went to the Italian bisexual Il P.
ETA: :confused: “F.F.F.F.”?
ETA: first graf to Ehler-Danlos.

No, one also specifies in which of four areas of the chest the murmur is heard the loudest, whethere it is “systolic” or “diastolic” (occurring when the heart is contracting vs. relaxing,) how the sound changes with time (e.g., crescendo-decrescendo,) and other associated sounds (S3, S4, “opening snap,” etc.)

Disclaimer: I am a pscyhiatry resident and no longer deal with the details of such things.

“Gunner” is med school lingo for an overambitious student who is excessively eager to do well on tests and please supervisors in the hospital by demonstrating his superlative medical knowledge and abilities, often to the extent of being willing to backstab his classmates in order to do so.

Sorry. 4F Selective Service Classification (flat feet?)

My mother’s cardiologist told her she had Acute Angina. She slapped him.
Very old joke. So sue me.