Emergency! 10 Unbelievable Medical Drama (and Comedy) Plotlines

From one patient who turned blue and another who turned purple, to two very different kinds of sexual dysfunction, here are 10 unforgettable TV medical cases


Gone to the Dogs

Scrubs, season 5
Episode: "My Lunch" and "My Fallen Idol"
The 911: When one patient dies, her organs are used in transplant surgeries for other patients. But when the transplant patients start having their own medical emergencies, an autopsy reveals the donor was infected with rabies.

The 411: Three transplant patients die, and a guilty Dr. Cox (John C. McGinley), who blames himself, falls into a drunken downward spiral that nearly derails his career.


Bad Blood

Grey's Anatomy, season 3
Episode: "Wishin' and Hopin'"
The 911: A cancer patient in the hospital is causing everyone around her, including the medical staff, to get sick and pass out in the operating room.
The 411: The woman was undergoing chemotherapy, but she was also taking herbal supplements to try to boost her recovery, and the supplements and chemo were reacting to each other in a way that made the woman's blood toxic. The doctors had to don oxygen masks and work in 20-second shifts (until the oxygen ran out) to complete the surgical procedure.


A Family Affair

House, season 3
Episode: "Fools for Love"
The 911: A young couple who has shared marijuana seems to be suffering from salmonella poisoning.
The 411: Nope, they haven't been poisoned. They have a genetic disease. The same genetic disease. And the same genetics -- because, unbeknownst to them, they're half-siblings! It's news so disturbing that even grumpy Dr. House refuses to be the one to deliver it.


That's Not Smurferific

Royal Pains, season 1
Episode: "Am I Blue?"
The 911: After a day at the beach, a young woman's skin turns blue.
The 411: No, she didn't eat too many blueberries or suddenly become inflicted with a case of Smurfitis. Turns out she was using a medication that made her skin photo-sensitive and turned it blue.


One of Their Own

ER, season 3
Episode: "Night Shift"
The 911: Dr. Benton has paged young, stressed out Dr. Gant to come to work, as the understaffed ER is about to begin treating a mangled patient who has been hit by an elevated train.
The 411: The doctors hear a beeper go off and see it belongs to the patient. When they read the number on the pager, they realize the patient is Dr. Gant, who jumped in front of the train on purpose.


Pole Position

Grey's Anatomy, season 2
Episode: "Into You Like a Train"
The 911: Two train crash victims are sent to the ER, where it's revealed they've both been impaled by a pole, which is still stuck in both of them. Anything done to save either of them may kill one, or both, of them.
The 411: The man, a fifty-something dad named Tom, volunteers to let the doctors save the other victim, twenty-something Bonnie, because he wants her to have a chance to live longer. But Bonnie's injuries are worse and she begins to crash, leaving the doctors with no choice but to take the risk of moving her off the pole. Bonnie dies, and the doctors focus on saving Tom.


Every Second Counts

M*A*S*H, season 9
Episode: "Death Takes a Holiday"
The 911: A mortally wounded soldier lands at the 4077, and the doctors don't even entertain the idea that they can save his life.
The 411: But, so that the man's family doesn't have to remember Christmas Day as the day he died, Hawkeye and company try to prolong the soldier's life until a minute past midnight on December 26.


Too Much of a Good Thing

Grey's Anatomy, season 2
Episode: "Yesterday"
The 911: A woman who's been in a car accident is wheeled into the ER, where she has a seizure-like episode similar to the one she was having when the car accident happened.
The 411: Epilepsy? Drug reaction? Brain injury? Nope, turns out she is, ahem, suffering from spontaneous orgasms, which is a real thing, and is not, according to the patient, nearly as fun as the Seattle Grace doctors seem to think it is. And it's not tough to believe her, especially when she has one of her "episodes" in front of her father. Fortunately, there is a procedure that will cure her.


The Little Toe

Nip/Tuck, season 2
Episode: "Manya Mabika"
The 911: Somalian model Manya sought the help of plastic surgeons Christian and Sean because she had been a victim of female genital mutilation and could no longer achieve orgasms.
The 411: The good doctors replaced her mutilated body part with a toe and connected it to her nerves, which enabled her to experience sexual pleasure again (and which Christian was only too happy to help her test).


With a Spouse Like This …

House, season 2
Episode: "Clueless"
The 911: While a couple is engaged in role play in the bedroom, the husband starts to have breathing problems and ends up at the hospital in the care of House and his team. House's colleagues think the patient is suffering from lupus, but Dr. House thinks something more sinister is afoot.
The 411: Give the man a prize...House was right. Though the couple appeared to have a happy marriage -- something House's co-worker Cameron placed a bet on -- House applied a substance to the wife's hands that turned them purple and proved the doctor's theory that the wife had been poisoning her hubby with gold.

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