01x05 - Damned if You Do

We are condemned to useless labor.

Fourth circle of hell.

Charting goes a lot faster when you eliminate all classic poetry.

Writing down what we already know to be read by nobody.

I'm pretty sure Dante would agree that qualifies as useless.

You're over two weeks behind in your charting.

Oops.

I missed.

- What are you, eight?

- Could an eight-year-old do this?

You'd better stop, or it'll stick that way.

- You have a patient in Exam One.

- Yeah, but, see, I'm off at 12:00, and it's already five of.

She's been waiting for you since 11:00.

Melancholy without hope.

Which circle is that?

Hi.

I'm Dr. House.

What seems to be the problem?

Show him your hands, Augustine.

- It-It looks like stigmata.

- Shh.

Pius.

You must be all the talk around the "holy water" cooler.

Been washing a lot of dishes recently?

I help out in the kitchen.

- Anything new in the kitchen?

- We just got a donation of saucepans and pots this week.

- I unpacked and washed them.

- Should have spent your time saving souls.

It's easier on the hands.

This is contact dermatitis.

You're allergic to dish soap.

Nonsense.

We've always used that soap.

Why is there a problem now?

I've been a doctor for years.

Why do I have to keep assuring people that I know what I'm doing?

Aperson can become allergic to substances...

that they've had repeated and prolonged exposure to.

The good news is-- free samples.

Diphenhydramine.

It's an antihistamine.

It'll stop the allergic reaction.

Take one every eight hours.

It might make you feel a little sleepy.

And get some of that over-the-counter cortisone cream.

Thank you, Doctor.

You want some water?

I have some tea.

Well, you just relax for a few minutes.

That stuff works pretty fast.

Still out by 12:00.

How do you solve a problem like dermatitis?

What?

Doctor?

I want to thank you for your patience.

She talkin' to you?

I don't know.

She's certainly looking at me.

Ah, it's good to get a secular diagnosis.

The sisters tend to interpret their illnesses as divine intervention.

And you don't?

Then you're wearing an awfully funny hat.

Ooh, boy.

Excuse me.

If I break my leg, I believe it happened for a reason.

I believe God wanted me to break my leg.

I also believe he wants me to put a cast on it.

Doctor!

Something's wrong.

Lift up your chin.

Sister, you're having an asthma attack.

I need you to relax.

Roll up her sleeve, please.

I'm gonna give you epinephrine.

It'll open your lungs and help you breathe.

What happened?

Did she take the pill?

- Yes.

- It's probably an allergic reaction.

She's allergic to an anti-allergy medicine?

You figure somebody's out to get her?

- How are you feeling?

- Better.

I'll put you on some steroids instead.

- Is my heart supposed to be feeling so funny?

- It's called adrenaline.

It makes your heart beat fast.

But not this fast.

Get a nurse, please.

Hold on.

Help!

Somebody help us!

Somebody get in here!

Call a code and charge up a defibrillator.

She's got no pulse.

You diagnosed the patient with allergies and prescribed antihistamine.

She went into respiratory distress, and you injected her with epinephrine.

Presumably 1 c.c.

.1 c.c.

That is the standard dose.

That is what I gave her.

People don't go into cardiac arrest from .1 c.c. epinephrine.

She must have a preexisting heart condition that got exacerbated by the epinephrine.

It's too bad you didn't make a notation in the chart.

I can make it up right now.

The drawer has syringes with both dosages.

You could have reached for the wrong-- - But I didn't.

- Everyone makes mistakes.

This is why doctors pay through the nose for malpractice insurance.

Relax.

They're not gonna sue.

The worst they'd do is whack my hand with a ruler.

- And the discipline board-- are they gonna whack your hand too?

- You're gonna report me?

- What choice do I have?

- Uh, how about not report me?

I can justify keeping her here for a 24-hour observation.

If you haven't found an underlying cause for the cardiac arrest by then, I will have to notify our attorneys.

Her hands were red and swollen.

Maybe she has a skin infection.

Cellulitis?

That could manifest with tachycardia.

There's no history of fever.

Results from the C.B.C. didn't indicate an infection.

The eosinophils are mildly elevated.

Sed rate's up a bit.

Could we be looking at a systemic allergic response?

It's not allergic.

Allergies don't cause cardiac arrest like this.

- Could be inflammation of the blood vessels.

- Vasculitis?

That wouldn't give you an elevated eosinophil count.

Churg-Strauss vasculitis would.

The blood vessels of the heart, lungs and skin become inflamed, causing the asthma, rash and heart problems-- covers all her symptoms.

You need a biopsy to diagnose.

Chest C.T. would be quicker.

The lady just came in with a rash.

What the hell are those?

Candy canes.

Candy canes?

Are you mocking me?

No.

It-It's Christmas, and I-- I thought-- Relax.

It's a joke.

Isn't the prognosis for Churg-Strauss a bit grim?

Yeah.

Untreated, only 33% of patients survive past a year.

Treated-- five years.

Then I definitely suggest treatment.

If it was any other attending doctor, I'd say that he made a mistake...

and gave her too much epinephrine.

Saying you wouldn't say it was my mistake...

is saying it was my mistake.

Everyone screws up.

Your rule.

I think you fit within the subset of "everyone".

I didn't screw up.

- Order a chest C.T. and start the sister on prednisone-- 40 milligrams T.I.D.

- The sister?

Oh, didn't I mention?

The patient's a nun-- Sister Augustine.

I hate nuns.

Who doesn't?

- Sister Augustine?

- We weren't watching.

We were trying to see if this is the bed control.

Oh.

Uh, this one's the bed control.

And that's the TV control.

I'm Dr.

Cameron.

This is Dr.

Chase and Dr.

Foreman.

I haven't seen television in over 20 years.

Do you consider it the work of the devil, or do you just not get cable where you live?

- Um-- - How are you feeling, Sister?

I seem to be a little better.

They gave me some medication.

Prednisone.

It's a steroid to help with the inflammation.

Has Dr.

House figured out what I have?

Will I be okay?

We're not sure what's wrong yet.

You'll have a chest C.T.

scan this afternoon that'll help with the diagnosis.

Dr. House is giving her medication, and he doesn't know what she has yet?

Trust, Sister Pius.

It all happens for a reason.

He doesn't know what he's doing.

The only problem that woman has is that House grabbed the wrong syringe.

You don't trust him?

I don't trust a man who won't admit he might be wrong.

I notice you weren't so quick to tell her she's got Churg-Strauss and only has a couple years left.

I don't tell patients bad news unless it's conclusive.

Because you know he might be wrong.

About Churg-Strauss.

Not about what happened in the clinic.

What about you, Chase?

You think he's infallible too?

All I know is, if House didn't make a mistake and Sister Augustine has Churg-Strauss, he'll be self-satisfied and our lives will be good for a few weeks.

If House did make a mistake, he'll be upset and our lives will be miserable for months.

There is that.

If Cuddy thinks I made a mistake, the least she could do is suspend me from clinic duty.

She doesn't confuse making a mistake with being incompetent.

Oh, here we go-- lesson time.

I recognize that confidence is not my short suit.

I also recognize that I am human and capable of error.

So you might have screwed this up?

No.

So it's merely a theoretical capacity for error.

Good point.

Maybe there isn't one.

Maybe that's my error.

Most people who think as much of themselves as you do like to talk about themselves.

Most people don't like to listen.

So, what's wrong with you?

Let me guess-- inflammatory bowel.

Wow.

Yeah.

Is it that bad?

Yes.

It's also written on your chart.

"Bloody diarrhea, gas, pain.

Took sulfasalazine, but it didn't work".

- No.

Then-Then I-- - "Next, tried steroid enemas.

Oral corticosteroids--5-A.S.A., 6-mercaptopurine".

- I'm impressed.

- By my medical history?

By how well your last doctor charted.

It's one thing to have to go to the bathroom every hour, but when the kids sit on my lap, it's-- The store sent me home.

They're gonna fire me.

Can't you put me back on 5-A.S.A.?

Maybe it'll work this time.

Not likely.

I'm giving you a prescription.

It's cheap, which is good, because your insurance company won't pay for it.

- "Cogaritis"?

- Cigarettes.

One twice a day.

No more, no less.

Studies have shown that cigarette smoking... is one of the most effective ways to control inflammatory bowel.

Plus it's been well established that you look 30% cooler.

- Are you kidding me?

- About the looking cooler, yeah.

- The rest is true.

- Isn't it addictive and dangerous?

Pretty much all the drugs I prescribe are addictive and dangerous.

The only difference with this one is it's completely legal.

Merry Christmas.

I was talking to the nurse-- Arsenio.

Do you know him?

Not really.

He can take pictures with his phone.

Cool.

That woman from the lab was interesting too.

She studied astrophysics before becoming a nurse.

You know the staff better than I do.

I love to hear all about people.

- Yet you live in a monastery.

- It's where I serve our Lord and the world best.

Our Lord maybe.

The rest of the world, on the other hand, - would probably get more out of feeding the homeless or-- - Healing the sick?

As an example, yeah.

Did you always want to be a doctor?

Always.

You always want to be a nun?

My parents died when I was six.

I was raised in a foster home run by the Church.

When I was 18, I went to the monastery, where they let me take my vows.

I've known no other life, and I haven't wanted to.

Okay, Sister.

We need you to lie as still as possible.

If you get scared, just let us know.

As Jonah said from inside the whale, "When I had lost all hope, I turned my thoughts to the Lord." - Well, she's got God on her side.

- I don't believe in God.

You're not even a little agnostic?

Is it supposed to smell funny?

Someone ralphed in there this morning.

We cleaned it up, but-- - It's normal, Sister.

It's just a few more minutes.

- Mm.

I believe in a higher order that's in control of what happens, but not one, anthropomorphic entity called "God"...

that's concerned with the everyday workings of you and me.

What else is there to control but the everyday workings of you and me?

It's always about you, Foreman.

What are you talking about-- the trees, the fish?

Should they be the ones that think it's all about them?

What about you, Chase?

Do you believe in God?

I believe Sister Augustine has no vascular pathology, which means no Churg-Strauss.

Which means House made a mistake.

No, not necessarily.

It could be something else-- thyrotoxicosis or a carcinoid.

I don't get you.

You don't believe in God, but you're willing to put complete faith in one man?

Please.

The smell.

Let's get her out of there.

I'm coming, Sister.

I gotcha.

Please.

The smell.

I'm comin'.

I'm gonna be sick.

There's no smell.

No.

God.

Oh!

It's Jesus.

It's Jesus!

He's coming for me!

He's burning me with his touch!

Let's get her on some Ativan.

The smells, religious visions-- it's symptomatic of temporal lobe swelling.

- We don't want her to-- - She's seizing.

- Jaw block!

- Help me get her on her side.

- Religious visions?

- Yeah.

And next comes-- Patient tested positive for herpetic encephalitis.

- What's that tell us?

- Her immune system is severely compromised.

Oh, I know.

Prednisone compromises the immune system.

- Isn't that the medicine that you gave her for that thing she doesn't have?

- Yeah, that-- Hey.

- I'm thinking that's a trick question.

- Her immune system is severely compromised.

- Two doses of prednisone wouldn't do that.

- Are you hanging your diagnosis on an adverb?

- In 10 seconds, I'm going to announce that I gave her the wrong dose in the clinic.

- You're gonna admit negligence?

Unless you leave the room.

If you stay, you'll have to testify.

Five, four, three, two-- So, there I was in the clinic, drunk.

I opened the drawer, closed my eyes, take the first syringe I can find -- So, what are the options for a compromised immune system?

Mixed connective tissue disease.

It'd explain why she was feeling better on the prednisone.

Sure.

She was feeling better right up to the moment it almost killed her.

On the other hand, it explains the symptoms-- swollen hands, pulmonary problems, cardiac problems.

It all fits.

Except her A.N.A.

was normal.

- So redraw the blood.

- But the treatment is corticosteroids-- prednisone-- and we can't go there because of the encephalitis.

Then we'll treat it with something that modulates the immune system but doesn't suppress it-- hyperbaric oxygen chamber.

There's no protocol for putting a patient in a high-pressure oxygen room to treat auto-immune problems.

Oh, you people.

Always with the protocols.

Prep the nun and discontinue the prednisone.

I am both amused and annoyed...

that you think I should be less stubborn than you are.

You are aware of the Hippocratic oath, right?

The one that starts, "First, do no harm", then goes on to tell us no abortions, no seductions, and definitely no cutting of those who labor beneath the stone?

Yeah.

I took a read once.

Wasn't impressed.

Hyperbaric treatments could cause oxygen toxicity-- lung and eye damage.

Every treatment has its dangers.

Which is why we only treat...

if we're convinced the patient actually needs the treatment.

I'm convinced.

You're not.

Question is, what are you gonna do about it?

Hmm?

I have an opening Thursday at 3:00.

Do you have a fourth?

Is he any good?

Can I call you right back?

Okay.

What's up?

The pressure will force the oxygen into your system, saturate your blood.

It will enhance white cell activity, reduce the inflammation.

And that will help with this mixed connective tissue disease?

We'll be doing about 10 treatments, and then we'll reevaluate.

The last treatment with prednisone caused the seizures, right?

How confident is Dr.

House about this?

That you reacted so strongly to the prednisone let us know...

that you had an underlying problem with your immune system.

I guess it was a blessing... of sorts.

So, who's your favorite reindeer, Nurse Arnold?

Rudolph.

I would've thought it was Vixen.

What are you implying?

Nothing.

But I saw you at the Christmas party with Dr.

Riles... and Dr. Jorkins and Nurse Crandall.

I was just doing some Christmas dancing.

This is a chapel, a house of prayer.

House of prayer?

Huh.

That explains the good reception.

Also why nobody's ever here.

I need to talk with you, Dr.

House.

Sister Augustine believes in things that aren't real.

I thought that was a job requirement for you people.

She's been known to lie to get sympathy.

She's a hypochondriac.

So you're warning me that I may be treating a nonexistent ailment.

Sore throats, joint pains.

There's always something wrong, and there's never a reason for it.

Mother Superior plays right into it-- lets Augustine off work duties, treating her as fragile, special.

That must make you angry.

It bothers me.

It's not really in Augustine's best interests.

You want some?

I shouldn't.

I guess you gotta be good at reading people to be a good infirmarian, huh?

Mm.

Mm-hmm.

So, we've got pride, anger, envy, gluttony-- That's four out of seven deadly sins in under two minutes.

Do you people keep records of these things?

Is there a "Cathlympics"?

They say you have a gift.

They like to talk.

- You hide behind your intelligence.

- Yeah.

That's pretty stupid.

And you make jokes because you're afraid to take anything seriously.

Because if you take things seriously, they matter.

And if they matter-- When things go wrong, I get hurt.

- I'm not tough.

I'm vulnerable.

- I barely know you.

And I don't know if I'm right.

I just hope I am.

Because the alternative is...

you really are as miserable as you seem to be.

You know, from the way you're looking at me right now, I'd say you just hit number five.

Lust.

Dr.

Brown, I love you too.

How are you feeling?

A little weak.

- That's from the oxygen.

- My mouth is dry.

Okay.

Well, uh, I'll get you some of your tea.

Mixed connective tissue disease?

Her A.N.A. is barely elevated.

Thanks for checking up on her.

Good to know you got my back.

O2 sat's down to 83.

Pulmonary problems, breathing problems.

Irritation from the oxygen is typical.

She comes in with a rash, and you put her into cardiac arrest.

That well just never runs dry, does it?

If there was no underlying problem, why is she still having the rapid heart rate?

Maybe from the herpetic encephalitis caused by you giving her prednisone.

Her reaction is a symptom, not an error.

There's always an explanation, isn't there?

Yes, there is.

And if this one doesn't work, we'll find another.

But never one involving you screwing up.

One that fits all the facts.

Look, we obviously have a difference of opinion, and that's fine.

But, unfortunately, I've used up all the time I budgeted today for banging my head against a wall.

I'm gonna do you the biggest favor one doctor can do for another.

I am gonna stop you from killing your patient.

You're off the case.

We're gonna treat the symptoms.

Not the underlying condition?

There is no underlying condition.

What's her status?

The sister's breathing is labored.

Pneumonitis from the hyperbaric chamber.

Put her on 40% oxygen until her O2 sats increase.

B.U.N. and creatinine's rising.

A.L.T. and A.S.T. twice the normal range.

Could be from the hypotensive episode.

Let's follow them with labs.

She still has the rash and joint pain she came in with.

Order a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory.

When we were looking at the differential diagnosis with Dr.

House, we were considering-- I don't need to hear what Dr.

House was considering.

All of this woman's symptoms can be traced to Dr.

House's considerations.

Okay.

Let's just get this patient healthy.

I want her going out the front door and not the back.

Hey, it's not like I betrayed him.

Cuddy would have found out about the hyperbaric treatments eventually.

You did what you thought you had to.

Can't get enough of this place, huh?

Came for my stethoscope.

So I shouldn't read too much into the fact that you were looking for it...

in the drawer with the epinephrine syringes in it?

Okay.

Yeah, I'd like to clear my reputation.

Oh, right.

I forgot how much you care about what people think.

Prescribing cigarettes for inflammatory bowel?

That's, uh-- They cause lung cancer, you know.

You know why they have ribbons for breast cancer, colorectal cancer, prostate cancer-- and not for lung cancer?

They ran out of colors?

It's because people blame lung cancer patients.

They smoke.

They screwed up.

They deserve to die.

The reason people die from lung cancer is guilt.

Huh.

Well, guilt does a lot of damage.

You said that with great significance.

You're not here to find your stethoscope.

You're not here to clear your reputation.

You're here because you're having doubts.

You might have screwed up.

I'm here because, if I'm right, Cuddy is killing that patient.

Okay.

But if you're wrong?

Then she's saving her.

Fine.

You're gonna have to go through every record of every patient...

who's been through this clinic in the last two days.

And you're gonna have to hope that those records can be trusted.

Which, by the way, yours can't.

These pills will help your kidneys function a little better, Sister.

Get your wrist?

What's that?

104.

Is that good?

It's fine.

You're a lousy liar, Dr.

Chase.

I have to get this.

Excuse me.

My mother's been dead for 10 years.

But she's always with you in spirit.

What do you know about the nun?

Which one?

The cute one.

I think she likes me.

- The sick one, obviously.

- Her parents died when she was a child.

She's been with the Church ever since.

What's she lying about?

- Why do you say that?

- I always say that.

And the old nun thinks the sick nun is a big fat nun liar.

You know nuns.

What do you think?

I don't know nuns.

You hate nuns.

You can't hate someone if you don't know them.

Know any Nazis?

Maybe I hate them on principle.

I have a theory about what makes good boys good.

It's not because of some moral imperative.

Good boys have the fear of God put into them.

Catholic Church specializes in that kind of training-- to make good boys afraid of divine retribution, so they'll do what their daddies tell them-- like, for example, going into medical school when it's the last thing they wanna do.

What do you think?

I think, if she did have a secret, her boss would know.


Did you paint or put in new carpets recently?

No.

Any way she could have got access to drugs?

We lock all our medications in the infirmary, and we don't keep prescription drugs here.

Why haven't you asked Sister Augustine about these things directly?

I've found that when you want to know the truth about someone, that someone is probably the last person you should ask.

Ah.

And have you been speaking to Sister Eucharist?

She ratted out her fellow sister pretty quickly.

Oh.

If I were you, I'd have her repeat a year of nun school.

Well, becoming a nun doesn't make you a saint.

Becoming a doctor doesn't make you a healer.

And just because we live in a monastery, and we spend most of our time in prayer, doesn't mean we don't find time for drama.

So, what is the sick one's drama?

Sister Augustine lived in Catholic foster care until she came to us.

- Tea?

- Sure.

Do all of you lie?

It's a good strategy; it's simpler when you all tell the same lie.

She has not spent her entire life as a good Catholic.

When she had a cardiac arrest, I had to open her blouse to do C.P.R.

And I learned two things: nuns can have nice breasts, and she has a tattoo on her shoulder-- of a skunk.

Now, maybe it's the sacred skunk of Joseph, but, as far as I know, Catholic foster care and monasteries...

do not keep tattoo parlors in their refectories.

We consider that our life begins...

when we put on our habits and take our vows.

- What happens before then-- - Is irrelevant to you, but it's relevant to me.

Sister Augustine went into foster care when she was six years old, but she left when she was 12.

She lived on the streets.

She got into drugs.

When she was 15, she became pregnant.

Tried to self-abort.

She lost the child.

She became ill.

We took her in when she came back.

If we had thought it was medically relevant, we would have told you.

It's not.

This tea is delicious.

Local herbs?

Any change with the medication?

Yes.

She's getting worse.

Lung function's deteriorating.

B.U.N. and creatinine continuing to rise.

She's starting to run a fever, and the rash is spreading.

At this rate, she's not gonna make Christmas.

Maybe House is right.

Maybe there is an underlying condition that explains the symptoms.

Something we haven't considered.

Like what?

It could be a metabolic disorder.

Specifically?

Might be genetic.

Specifically?

I'm just saying-- You're just saying you think House is right.

Might be right.

Ofcourse he might be right.

It might be the hand of God at work.

Don't say it's something else...

unless you've got something concrete to offer.

What's this, hemlock?

I'm gonna do you the biggest favor one doctor can do another.

I'm gonna stop you from killing your patient.

It's figwort tea-- great for that little pick-me-up we're all looking for in the morning.

Opens the lungs, increases the blood pressure, stimulates the heart.

Unfortunately, if you then get injected with even .1 c.c. of epinephrine-- instant cardiac arrest.

- Still, what the hell, it tastes great.

- Sister Augustine-- Has been drinking it religiously, so to speak.

And if you take the cardiac arrest out of the equation-- All the rest of the symptoms can be explained by a severe long-term allergic reaction.

Well, that's what Cameron said in the beginning.

Yes, she did.

Well done.

But your unwillingness to stick by your diagnosis almost killed this woman.

Take a lesson from Foreman-- stand up for what you believe.

Okay.

Let's go figure out how to save a nun.

Damned if you do, damned if you don't.

Because it's been untreated for so long, it's gone from a simple "watery eyes, scratchy throat" allergy...

to a whopping "I'm gonna kick your ass" allergy-- compromising her immune system, diminishing her ability to heal and breaking down her organ systems.

So, what's the source?

The dish soap.

No.

The symptoms persisted days after the dish-washing episode.

It's gotta be something she's been exposed to here in the hospital as well as the monastery.

What about the tea?

It caused her arrhythmia.

Could be, but it's not definitive.

We'll skin-test for allergens.

Not yet.

She's too reactive.

She tests positive to everything.

We need to stabilize her-- isolate her from all possible allergens-- give her system a rest.

Get her in a clean room.

Okay.

Then gradually introduce allergens and see how she responds.

When she reacts to something, we'll know that's what's killing her.

There you go.

No television, no books.

- Not even my Bible?

- I'm afraid not.

This room has filtered air, filtered water.

You even have silk sheets-- very decadent and hypoallergenic.

You should be feeling better here.

We'll be back to check on you in a little while.

Can the other sisters come in and pray with me?

It'd be better if you don't have any visitors.

Once we isolate what's causing your allergy, then we can be a little more lax.

I-I can pray with you.

I don't wanna die.

Why has he left me?

I was in seminary school.

They asked us once what our favorite passage was.

I chose First Peter, chapter one, verse seven.

"These trials only test your faith to see whether or not it is strong and pure.

Your faith is being tested, as fire tests gold and purifies it".

"And your faith is far more precious to the Lord than mere gold.

"So if your faith remains strong after being tested, "it will bring you much praise and glory and honor...

on the day of his return".

He hasn't left you.

The only thing in the way of you knowing he's there is your fear.

You have a choice-- faith or fear.

That's the test.

Choosing faith doesn't mean I won't die.

But it will affect how you experience your death...

and, therefore, your life.

It's up to you.

Why did you leave seminary school?

That test.

You passed.

I didn't.

We'll call you if anything changes.

Will she be all right?

As long as she's not exposed to anything that can aggravate her allergy, she'll be fine.

I need some help in here!

Screw the procedure!

She's in anaphylactic shock!

No way.

She's in a damn clean room.

You kidding me?

Get in here!

. 1 c.c. of epi.

We've got to intubate.

I got it.

Get the ambu bag.

I'm in.

Breathing's stabilized.

It's a clean room.

How do you get an allergic reaction in a clean room?

Maybe it was the preservatives in the I.V.?

Checked that.

Latex tubing?

Checked that.

Checked everything.

Well, it could be mast cell leukemia.

It can cause anaphylaxis.

I checked the blood levels, and it's not eosinophilia or idiopathic anaphylaxis.

Maybe it's just divine will.

It's not my will.

You do realize, if you're wrong-- about the big picture, that is-- you're going to burn, right?

What do you want me to do-- just accept it, pack it in?

Yeah.

I want you to accept that sometimes patients die against all reason, and sometimes they get better against all reason.

No, they don't.

We just don't know the reason.

I think the nuns would agree with you on that.

I just wanted to say that I know that you did everything you could.

I don't need verification from you to know that I'm doing my job well.

That's your problem, not mine.

I was just being nice.

Yeah, well, you don't need to always do that.

Merry Christmas.

Sister Augustine's been extubated.

Good.

She's requested to check out, against medical advice.

She wants to go back to the monastery.

Well, talk her out of it.

I think I may have talked her into it.

Room's paid up for the rest of the week.

Might as well stick around.

This illness... is a test of my faith.

If it's his will to take me, it doesn't matter where I am.

I can accept that.

Does anybody believe anything you say?

You're not accepting.

You're running away.

Just like you always do.

You ran away from the monastery to get laid.

You ran away from the real world when getting laid didn't work out so good.

Now things aren't working out again, so off you go.

Why is it so difficult for you to believe in God?

What I have difficulty with is the whole concept of belief.

Faith isn't based on logic and experience.

I experience God on a daily basis...

and the miracle of life all around-- the miracle of birth, the miracle of love.

He is always with me.

Where is the miracle in delivering a crack-addicted baby?

Hmm?

Then watching her mother abandon her 'cause she needs another score.

Miracle of love.

You're over twice as likely to be killed...

by the person you love than by a stranger.

Are you trying to talk me out of my faith?

You can have all the faith you want in spirits and the afterlife...

and heaven and hell.

But when it comes to this world, don't be an idiot.

'Cause you can tell me that you put your faith in God to get you through the day, but when it comes time to cross the road, I know you look both ways.

I don't believe he is inside me and is going to save me.

I believe he is inside me whether I live or die.

Then you might as well live.

You got a better shot betting on me than on him.

When I was 15, I was on every kind of birth control known to man-- and I still got pregnant.

I blamed God.

I hated him for ruining my life.

But then I realized something.

You can't be angry with God and not believe in him at the same time.

No one can.

Not even you, Dr.

House.

How'd it go?

She has God inside her.

It would have been easier to deal with a tumor.

Maybe she's allergic to God?

We've looked everywhere for an allergen that could be causing this reaction...

except one place-- inside her.

On her medical history, she didn't mention any surgery.

She had one.

Can we get her records?

What hospital was it at?

She didn't have it at a hospital.

Order a full body scan.

What if she refuses?

Tell her I'm looking for a miracle.

No piercings.

No fillings.

No surgical pins in the arm.

No implants.

It's clean as a whistle.

What's House looking for?

- What is that?

- Don't know.

Lock on it.

Get a 3-D representation.

Oh, my God.

The copper cross-- a form of birth control pulled off the market in the '80s.

- So she's allergic to copper.

- Rare, but it happens.

Wouldn't she know she had an I.U.D.?

She had an abortion.

I.U.D. must have been left in, embedded in the endometrial tissue where it couldn't be detected.

So, all we have to do is remove the I.U.D.

Then the symptoms should subside.

I got this I.U.D. when I was 15.

It-It's been more than 20 years.

Prolonged exposure to an allergen with minimal symptoms.

But at some point. all it takes is one last contact to cause a full-blown reaction.

Just like a balloon filled with air-- one last breath, it explodes.

The first time I got the rash was when I was washing the copper cookware.

And all your subsequent symptoms came from ingesting food prepared in it.

Dr. House found his miracle.

I doubt he'll interpret it that way.

You told me your favorite passage.

Would you like to hear mine?

"Celebrate and be glad, because your brother was dead and is alive again".

The prodigal son.

He'll be waiting for you when you're ready.

We'll schedule your surgery for tomorrow.

The sixth circle of hell.

Confined in a sweat box with a bloody nose, and all the tissues are soggy.

I think that's the seventh.

No.

The seventh is-- God, you must be fun at parties.

I think we both know the flaw in that theory.

How's the sister?

Heart rate is normal, kidneys functioning.

You know how it is with nuns.

You take out their I.U.D.'s, they just bounce right back.

Great.

Told you I didn't screw up.

You screwed up.

I gave her .1 c.c. of epinephrine.

Yeah, and if Cuddy hadn't taken you off the case, you would have killed her.

You wanna come over for Christmas dinner?

You're Jewish.

Yeah.

Hanukkah dinner.

What do you care?

It's food.

It's people.

No, thanks.

Maybe I'll come to your place.

Your wife doesn't mind being alone at Christmas?

I'm a doctor.

She's used to being alone.

I don't wanna talk about it.

Neither do I.

You did good with the nun.

- Congratulations.

- Thank you.

Merry Christmas, Dr.

House.

Dr. Wilson.

Good night.

That was sweet.