Problem Library

Are You Sure I’ve Seen You Before?

Length: 3-6 hours

Discipline: Biological Sciences

Level: Advanced (majors)

Author: Tallitsch, Robert

“Rachel is a 37-year-old female who works as an administrative assistant for a Fortune-500 company in downtown Chicago. It is Monday, and she is walking along the lakefront to work from her north-shore condominium. As she is walking south she notices the beginnings of an oncoming migraine headache. She notices a flashing aura in her peripheral vision. In addition, she is becoming increasingly sensitive to light. By the time she reaches her office she is unable to tolerate even normal sound, and is advised by her boss to ‘head for home’ and take the day off. Rachel’s assistant (Charles) accompanies her during the cab ride home, and helps her pull the blinds in her bedroom and settle her into bed for the day. Rachel is advised by Charles to call the office if she needs anything. Two hours later Charles receives a garbled telephone call from Rachel. She is agitated and very frightened. Charles advises her to remain calm, and tells her that he will be right over. Immediately after hanging up from Rachel’s call Charles dials 911 and requests an ambulance at Rachel’s address. He immediately hails a cab and meets the ambulance at Rachel’s condo. She is immediately placed on oxygen and rushed to Northwestern Memorial Hospital. Students are asked to correctly diagnose the patient and answer several related questions about the patient.”

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