One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
(among doctors) a patient who makes frequent visits to a surgery, complaining of persistent but unidentifiable ailments.
- ‘Because such patients may evoke despair, anger, and frustration in doctors, they may be referred to as ‘heartsink patients,’ ‘difficult patients,’ ‘fat folder patients,’ and ‘chronic complainers.’’
- ‘I recognised my scrawl and wondered if I had written this in desperation for something to do for another heartsink patient.’
- ‘Imagine inviting your heartsink patients home for dinner.’
- ‘My spell of tiredness has led me to investigate and investigate my heartsink patients.’
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