DIY Craze Spreads to Hip Replacements, Appendix Removal as Americans Lose Health Insurance

By Dewey Yosef

SAN FRANCISCO, CA — Once limited to the realm of people who enjoy demolishing their bathroom with nothing but a sledgehammer and a lack of concern for asbestos, the “do-it-yourself” craze has spread to the ever-widening pool of Americans who have lost their health insurance coverage. 

Tom Jensen, 79, has needed a hip replacement for more ten years. “I missed a few monthly payments, and Kaiser dumped me, right before I was supposed to go under the knife,” Jensen says. “So, I looked up an old army buddy who used to work in the mess hall chopping onions all day. It turns out, he once heard someone talk about this episode of ER where this lady’s gall bladder explodes. He’s coming over tomorrow with a hand saw and a bottle of whiskey. Wish us luck!”

For Cheryl Matthews, 31, the appeal of DIY surgery is purely social. “I call them ‘Appendix Parties,’ explains Matthews. “We sip a little wine, nibble on some cheese and crackers, and then we bring out the iodine and the ether. We used to be a book club, as a matter of fact. I guess what it comes down to is we would much rather have our neighbor remove our appendix than admit we never finished Infinite Jest.”

Despite drawbacks like infection, constant, debilitating pain and total paralysis, proponents of DIY surgery point out that in addition to the money you save by not hiring a pricey professional, self-surgery can also be a great way to earn some extra cash.

“So, let’s say you take out your own kidney and you want to sell it,” explains IRS source Irv Wallace. “You can list it on your taxes as a donation, and actually get tax credit for it. Then, you charge a ‘processing fee’ to whoever wants your organ. You can make anywhere from ten bucks to maybe $10,000. It’s better than driving for Uber, that’s for sure.”

Kate JamesComment