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Memory Alpha
Patient wear

Patients in the Enterprise sickbay

Patient cat

Dr. Crusher's "littlest patient"

A patient was any lifeform that required medical and/or psychological treatment.

Patients usually wore a hospital gown or other loose-fitting garment when undergoing continuing care in order to facilitate their treatment.

Patients in sickbay on the USS Enterprise had access to library tapes, including technical manuals for the ship. (TOS: "Space Seed")

In 2365, Dr. Katherine Pulaski described Captain Jean-Luc Picard's plan to destroy the USS Enterprise-D to defeat Nagilum as "curing the disease by killing the patient." (TNG: "Where Silence Has Lease")

When Commander William T. Riker told Counselor Deanna Troi stories as he was undergoing treatment for a Surata IV microbe infection, she told him he was "a very entertaining patient." (TNG: "Shades of Gray")

When Dr. Beverly Crusher claimed she was experiencing déjà vu while treating Geordi La Forge for dizziness in 2370, he told her she must be thinking of another patient. (TNG: "Cause And Effect") Later, Worf made a similar claim when she remembered already treating him for a concussion. (TNG: "Parallels")

While inquiring on a pregnant Spot's health that year, Dr. Crusher described the feline as her smallest patient. (TNG: "Genesis")

Without consent of a close relative, a doctor could not perform surgery on a patient against their will. Dr. Julian Bashir told this to Jake Sisko, who gave the doctor permission to operate on his father. (DS9: "Rapture")

In 2372, Bashir gave Quark a case of Alvanian brandy, saying a patient had given it to him as payment but he couldn't accept it. (DS9: "Body Parts")

While experiencing a simulated case of the Levodian flu, The Doctor told Kes not to offer his holographic tissue paper to patients. (VOY: "Tattoo")

In 2373, Dr. Bashir used leaving an imaginary patient on the operating table as an excuse to leave Miles O'Brien and his wife alone. (DS9: "The Assignment")

One aim of The Doctor's personality improvement project was to have "more patience with my patients." (VOY: "Darkling")

An ambulatory case was a patient who was not injured badly enough to require transport by wheelchair or stretcher but rather could walk without assistance.

In 2369, following an attack by the Lenarians, Doctor Beverly Crusher told a medic to tell Dr. Selar that she could use ward three for ambulatory cases. (TNG: "Tapestry")

Treatment of patients[]

According to doctors[]

In Doctor Mark Piper's experience, the healthiest of patients were "generally off on some reading," unlike Gary Mitchell after going through the galactic barrier. (TOS: "Where No Man Has Gone Before")

In Dr. Leonard McCoy's opinion, advanced medical technology alone was ineffective in determining a patient's overall health. He preferred to observe firsthand markers, such as "a healthy set of tonsils." (TOS: "The Man Trap") Given the choice between primitive medical procedures and 23rd century techniques when a life was at stake, however, he preferred to opt for the less invasive methods. (Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home)

McCoy took Joe Tormolen's death hard in 2266, saying that he'd never lost a patient like him before, a man who ordinarily wouldn't give up. (TOS: "The Naked Time")

According to Dr. Crusher, "The first tenet of good medicine is never make the patient any worse." (TNG: "Ethics")

When Garak told Julian Bashir that he needed to know who he really was in 2370, the doctor replied by saying, "I'm a doctor. You're my patient. That's all I need to know." (DS9: "The Wire")

Cautioning Seven of Nine, The Doctor told her that patients who tried to self-diagnose always assumed the worst. (VOY: "Relativity")

According to patients[]

In 2366, Q criticized Beverly Crusher's bedside manner, saying that her patients probably recovered quickly just to get away from her. (TNG: "Deja Q")

According to Rachel Garrett, doctors always overprotected their patients. (TNG: "Yesterday's Enterprise")

In 2367, when faced with the possibility of losing her empathic abilities forever, Deanna Troi once described how she'd seen many patients treated differently by their friends and colleagues as a result of disability. (TNG: "The Loss")

In 2371, Jadzia Dax was nervous about going back to the Symbiosis Commission as a patient, saying it was worse than being an initiate. (DS9: "Equilibrium")

According to machines[]

During a 2268 trial of the M-5 multitronic unit aboard the EnterpriseOne of several efficiency measures taken by the computer was the shutting down of all systems in sickbay until there were patients to treat. (TOS: "The Ultimate Computer")

The Jye Allocator dictated medical care based on a patient's usefulness rather than need. (VOY: "Critical Care")

According to others[]

When Bashir managed to save the life of Vedek Bareil against all odds in 2371, Benjamin Sisko chided him for his modesty, saying, "It's not every doctor that can lose a patient and then has him back on his feet in a few weeks." (DS9: "Life Support")

In 2376, The Doctor added a daydreaming algorithm to his program himself. When the algorithm malfunctioned, causing him to daydream all the time whether he decided to or not, B'Elanna Torres commented that "A doctor who operates on himself has a petaQ for a patient." (VOY: "Tinker Tenor Doctor Spy")

First patients[]

Doctor Antaak's first patient was his pet targ Boshar. As a child, he stitched up the targ's side after it was torn open. (ENT: "Affliction")

Julian Bashir's first patient was his teddy bear Kukalaka, whom he re-stuffed and sewed the leg of after it became damaged, despite his mother's desire to discard the toy. In 2372, he related this to Ekoria, describing it as his first surgery. When she asked him why he kept persisting in sewing up the ragged object, Bashir replied that he "wouldn't be much of a doctor if I gave up on a patient, would I?" (DS9: "The Quickening")

Particularly difficult patients[]

Spock once described McCoy as "the worst patient in the entire crew of the Enterprise.". (TOS: "All Our Yesterdays")

Jonathan Archer had heard that doctors make the worst patients. (ENT: "Regeneration") Beverly Crusher believed therapists were second only to doctors as far as being bad patients. (TNG: "The Loss")

Crusher also described Worf to Dr. Toby Russell as a difficult patient. (TNG: "Ethics")

The Doctor believed that Vulcans made the worst patients. (VOY: "Cold Fire")

In 2376, he sarcastically responded to a skeptical Lewis Zimmerman, who believed his program to be obsolete, that "I also have an exceptionally high tolerance for difficult patients." (VOY: "Life Line") In 2377, when he expressed a lack of surprise at finding sickbay "fugitive" Seven of Nine with B'Elanna Torres in USS Voyager's engineering section, Torres remarked, "We difficult patients need to stick together." (VOY: "Imperfection")

Faking illness[]

Some patients faked their illnesses to gain sympathy or advantages.

In 2268, Spock went into a trance to fake illness so he and McCoy could return to the Enterprise after the Kelvans captured them. McCoy later chalked up the Vulcan's sudden symptoms to a flare-up of Rigelian Kassaba fever. (TOS: "By Any Other Name")

In 2269, McCoy noted that the Shore Leave Planet's sensors can probably distinguish between real injuries and fake ones. (TAS: "Once Upon a Planet")

In 2365, an incapacitated Riker joked that he found his sickbay stay enjoyable due to being waited on, and hoped they won't discover he's faking sick. Picard then expressed his wish that Riker had been faking injury, as he had seen the poisonous thorn which injured him. (TNG: "Shades of Gray")

In 2367, Guy of Gisbourne accused Maid Marian (Vash) of feigning insanity in an attempt to save herself from execution. (TNG: "Qpid")

In 2369, Quark pretended to be stricken with the aphasia virus in order to visit his customers in Deep Space 9's infirmary and determine whether they were faking sick to avoid paying their bar bill. Benjamin Sisko felt nobody could be that sly, but the Ferengi assured him that he was. (DS9: "Babel")

In 2371, Leeta faked illness by coughing in front of Julian Bashir in the hopes that she might get some attention from him. He recommended a Fanalian toddy for her and ordered one himself, claiming he felt like he was getting a cough, too. (DS9: "Explorers")

In 2377, it was suspected that Gar faked illness to gain access to USS Voyager's sickbay, but Neelix speculated that in his attempts to please the Dralian's palate, he might have actually made him ill with the exotic spices the Talaxian added to Gar's food. (VOY: "Critical Care")

Later that year, Harry Kim faked a seizure in order to see The Doctor, whose holoprogram was hiding in Seven of Nine's Borg implants. (VOY: "Body and Soul")

The term malingerer, meaning a patient who faked illness as an excuse to miss work, was used in a deleted scene from TOS: "The Enemy Within", where Doctor Leonard McCoy claims to have a malingerer in sickbay. (Star Trek: Lost Scenes)

See also[]

External link[]