Tuesday, June 15, 2004

Firstly - a short disclaimer. If there are small children in the room or persons with a weak disposition, please send them out of the room now. The following post is about home surgery. Nor am I recommmending anyone out there perform this or any other type of surgery on themselves, despite the fact that this blog is written as a how to guide.

Over the last week or so there has been a small growth in my armpit. I started calling him Eric. I showed some work colleagues the growth and the consensus was it was a skin tag and if it was causing me bother I should get it removed. The next suggestion was that I should do it myself rather than pay those outrageous prices charged by professional medical technicians. I mean, how hard can surgery be, right? Actually, now I think back on it, it wasn't really a suggestion, more of a dare. Whatever, I'm game.

Here is a picture of the offending piece of flesh. Pretty small, I think you'll agree. Apparently doctors don't like removing them. I don't know why. Probably a pretty good reason. That won't stop me, though.

If you're doing this at home, firstly make sure you have an ice cream in the fridge or a chocolate bar or something. The reason why will become apparent soon. Wash the effected area thoroughly with anti-bacterial soap. Then prepare your surgical supplies shown above. The primary surgical instrument I selected to perform the operation was a pair of nail clippers, which I boiled for about ten minutes before beginning. In retrospect I should have selected a pair of SHARP nail clippers.

Next, position the nail clippers with the skin tag inside its jaws, then squeeze like buggery. At this point a small, plaintive cry may escape your lips. This is normal. Then tug, squeeze, twist and wiggle the nail clippers. Crying for your "mummy" is also natural at this point but whatever you do, don't give up. You definitely won't have the stomach to try this twice in quick succession. It stings like an absolute, cast iron bitch. You know that real ouchy sting that makes your toes clench and your eyes go all funny? One of them.

Then Eric and I parted company.

Then the blood appears as a tiny dot. Then a blob. Then a trickle. You may be concerned that you are bleeding to death at this point. You may well be, but don't panic, just wipe with antiseptic cream and plaster a piece of gauze or cotton wool or whatever you have handy to soak up the blood.

Remember that ice cream or chocolate bar? Now is the right time for it. Eat it, and praise your forethought.

I examined Eric, briefly, we said our last goodbyes, then I chucked him in the bin. Serve the little bastard right.


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