‘House’ recap: A trip down memory lane
House has something in common with the Patient of the Week, a 33-year-old waitress named Nadia. She has a photographic memory. House has a pornographic memory. A match made in … I can’t remember how the saying goes. Tip o’ my tongue…
Poor Nadia. Ever since puberty, she has perfect recall. Although most people might consider that a blessing, she considers it a curse. After she trips carrying a tray of dishes at the diner (nice job, Einstein!), she’s taken to PPTH with temporary leg paralysis and high CK levels in her blood. (That’s creatine kinase, not the potty-mouth comedian Louis CK).
Taub and Foreman are dispatched to her home, where they find dozens of jigsaw puzzles (hint!) and empty laxative wrappers (yuck). Magnesium poisoning? Nah, her BP and respiration is normal. Try again.
Nadia reveals she has been falling at work with increasing frequency the past several years, which leads Masters (yes, she’s still on the team, darn it!) to think it’s Parkinson’s. But it’s still too early for the correct diagnosis.
Enter, Nadia’s older sister, Elena, carrying a bouquet of daisies. How sweet, except sis detests them, which results in a heart episode, the first of what seemed like a record number of attacks Monday. Could it be long QT syndrome? (That’s a heart thing, Mr. Google says, not cotton swabs.)
So Nadia needs a scan, but in order to get a proper reading, older sis has to get Nadia riled up so that she has another episode. Now, I have an older sister, and this part seemed redundant to me. “Mom always liked you best!” “But your curfew was later!” Seems that whenever the two are in the same room, they fight, and this time it’s over a little incident where older sis hit the younger with a car back in the day. Nadia’s heart goes ballistic, and we have a diagnosis and drug: Autoimmune. Beta blocker.
But Nadia’s breath starts to smell like ammonia. A prescription for breath mints, you ask? No: Her kidneys are shutting down. She’s put on dialysis, but then has a respiratory episode. Oh, and she breaks out in hives. In other words, she’s a walking health benefits plan.
Turns out, our POTW is allergic to dialysis. That combined with her failing kidneys is a death sentence. Her only hope is a kidney transplant. So, after all the years of sisters bickering, turns out they’re gonna have to put aside the little hit-and-run incident. Older sis consents to the transplant.
But we're not done yet. Coming out of anesthesia, Nadia has a seizure. Three Emmy clips in one episode! Nadia then displays choreia (involuntary movement) in her arm. The symptoms add up to McLeod Syndrome, which can also cause obsessive-compulsive disorder. Her photographic memory and love of puzzles are a manifestation.
There is hope. SSRI drugs (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors) will alleviate her ills, but there’s a side effect: Her memory will be like everyone else’s. No, she won’t be able to remember what she had for lunch on Oct. 30, 2008, or whether she had correct change for the bus on March 31, 1996. Them’s the breaks. She reluctantly takes the pills.
The "B" story concerns Taub trying to pass the pathology certification test. House assigns Foreman to be his tutor. Taub ends up buying the test on the Pathology Board Exam black market. He passes (I’d be really worried if he didn’t). And Foreman asks Taub to move in. Isn't it romantic?
The "C" story is Wilson adopting a diabetic cat, and House trying to come between them. House suggests a bag and a river for the cat. Wilson won’t bite. At least this week.
-- Linda Whitmore
Photo: House (Hugh Laurie) thinks Wilson (Robert Sean Leonard) should get out more. Credit: Michael Yarish / Fox