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Recent Episodes :: Episodes ::  #516 "The Softer Side"

February 23, 2009
516 House, Wilson, and Cuddy
Wilson (Robert Sean Leonard) and Cuddy (Lisa Edelstein) help House (Hugh Laurie,) when he experiments with a new treatment for his leg pain in the HOUSE episode "The Softer Side" airing Monday, Feb. 16 (8:00-9:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX.X
Š2009 Fox Broadcasting Co.
Credits: Adam Taylor/FOX
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Written by
Liz Friedman
Directed by
Deran Sarafian
Patient of the Week:
Jackson, who has both male and female DNA (genetic mosaicism) but whose parents have raised him as a boy without telling him about the problem in his genes, collapses with severe abdominal pain after a basketball game. His parents have been giving him testosterone shots as he approaches puberty.
How House gets involved:
Cuddy brings him the case and he takes it without arguing.
The privacy invasion / ethical breach
It isn't clear whether Foreman and Thirteen have permission to search the patient's house. Thirteen refuses to tell the patient that the testosterone shots are vitamins (whether this is ethical is debated).
Preliminary diagnoses:
At first House and the team thinks it is dehydration. The parents ask House for a MRI to look for a blind uterus and House agrees to do this. When the patient has a heart problem during a procedure, they think it might be drugs or toxins but a search of his house turns up nothing except a poem. Then the patient's liver and kidneys start to fail.
The final diagnosis
House quits in the middle of the case and when he comes back figures out that Jackson had dehydration (aggravated by a high number of energy drinks he consumed causing the fluids given in the ER not to work quickly) and everything else was caused by the contrast used in the MRI House agreed to do to please the parents.
Clinic Patients
Additional Information
  • House stops breathing after being nicer than normal to many people.
  • It is Foreman who gets House breathing again by grabbing his nipples and twisting thus causing pain which wakes House up.
  • House concludes that being nice and out of pain makes him a bad doctor.

516 House, Wilson and Cuddy
Wilson (Robert Sean Leonard) and Cuddy (Lisa Edelstein) are surprised to learn that House (Hugh Laurie) has found a new way to treat his leg pain in the HOUSE episode "The Softer Side" airing Monday, Feb. 16 (8:00-9:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX.
Credit: Adam Taylor/FOX
Additional Resources
Cast: Hugh Laurie as Dr. Gregory House; Lisa Edelstein as Dr. Lisa Cuddy; Omar Epps as Dr. Eric Foreman; Robert Sean Leonard as Dr. James Wilson; Jennifer Morrison as Dr. Allison Cameron; Jesse Spencer as Dr. Robert Chase; Peter Jacobson as Dr. Chris Taub; Kal Penn as Dr. Lawrence Kutner; Olivia Wilde as Thirteen

Guest Cast: Dominic Scott Kay as Jackson; Julia Campbell as Melanie; Ben Reed as Joseph; Nick Puga as Ian; Fred Kronenberg as Doctor; Meagan Gordon as Young Woman; Nicole Cannon as Nurse Helen; Bobbin Bergstrom as Nurse

Quotes, Quotations, Dialogue, Scenes
  • Thirteen and Foreman are dressing for work. She asks him, "Black heels or boots?"
       "You know I'm a fan of those heels."
       "Boots it is." Foreman looks confused so she explains. "For all we know, House knows you're a fan of those heels."
       "You think House is going to figure out we faked our breakup because of your shoes?" Thirteen just waits for Foreman to figure out what he just said and when he does, he continues, "Go with the boots."

  • While Taub and Thirteen do an MRI, he asks her, House long do you think the post breakup awkwardness is going to last?"
       "Foreman and I are both professionals."
       "If by professional you mean he's a T-1000 built by Cyberdyne Systems. I never understood what you saw in him."
       "He's not really your type, Huh?"
       "Here's my impression of Foreman on the happiest day of his life." Taub turns to her with a dour expression on his face. He turns back to the equipment. "Now on the saddest day of his life." He turns back to her with the same expression.
       "We just broke up. I'm not quite ready to mock him yet."
       "House was a jerk to break you two up. But... he did you a favor."

  • After Kutner talks to Foreman about the breakup, Foreman goes to the two of them. "I get House wanting to jerk me and Thirteen around, but you guys?"
       Kutner turns to Taub, "Told you they were still together." Taub takes out his wallet and hands Kutner money.
       Foreman asks "How'd you know?"
       Taub tells him how Kutner had deduced it. "Noticed you smelled like Thirteen's soap every morning."
       Foreman is skeptical as he asks Kutner, "You figured it out?"
       "Yes. I'm a little slow. Maybe someone could let me know when I should be insulted."
       At first Foreman is relieved. "House doesn't know.... You noticed but House didn't?"
       "Yes. I get it. He's generally smarter than me. Can we please move on."
       "He's not generally smarter than you. He's always smarter than you. Unless—"

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    Foreman has come to the same conclusion that Wilson had already come to although Foreman doesn't know it so he calls Wilson to tell him what he is now sure of. "House is on heroin."
       "Well that's certainly an interesting notion." Wilson has taken the phone call while out at a restaurant with House.
       Foreman goes on without yet realizing that House is with Wilson. "It's why his lungs stopped. It's why he okay'd the MRI. It's why he missed— things he wouldn't ordinarily miss."
       "Um. We'll run some tests and I'll let you know."
       "He's there isn't he?"
       "Well that would explain the inappropriate responses. I gotta go."
       Wilson explains the phone call to House."Sorry. Consult."
       House notices the drinks on the table. "When did you order these?"
       "When you were in the bathroom. I thought a celebration was in order." He picks up his beer. "To cheating death." House picks up his bourbon and clinks glasses but he then puts it down. "You off bourbon? Can I get you something else?"
       "I came here expecting a burger. Figured I'd have to endure a little lecture on moderation."
       "You never listen so why—"
       "Instead I get a drink. I nice little glass of respiratory depression on the day my lungs stopped working."
       "You seem fine now."
       "You don't believe I OD'd on vicodin. You figure I'm on something stronger. And because you can never ever assume anything but the most screwed up scenarios as far as I'm concerned—"
       "Funny how I'm usually right."
       House continues, "You think that i'm on heroin. Heroin!" He motions to the drink. "This is you version of a tox screen. Because if I am on heroin, I can't drink that without risking another bout of not breathing.?"
       House picks up the shot of bourbon and drinks it down and gets up to leave with a "Good night."
       A moment later Wilson follows and finds House vomiting up the drink in the alley way. "You idiot!"
       "Okay. I admit it. I have bulimia. I look great though, don't I?"
       " Heroin? Heroin! Of all the stupid—"
       House interrupts. "I'm not on heroin."
       "I just caught you with your fingers down your throat."
       "I'm on methadone. Stupid product: heroin without the high."
       "Yeah. And twice the risk of death."
       "But no risk of arrest."
       "You nearly died today."
       "Today was a fluke. I nodded off."
       "Right. You're safe as long as you never sleep again. Mistime your dose, you die. A couple of drinks, you die. Mix it with thee wrong drugs, you die. You want to detox from vicodin, pick something that won't kill you."
       "I'm not detoxing."
       "If you're looking for something that'll help with your pain—"
       "Doesn't help my pain. It eliminates it." House throws away his cane. My leg doesn't hurt anymore." And he walks off.

  • Cuddy finds House reading in a men's room stall and tells him she knows about the methadone and because she is afraid it will kill him, I can't sit by and watch you kill yourself. As long as you're in my hospital, you can't do mehadone."
       House considers this for a moment and then chooses, walks out and tells Cuddy, "I'll send someone for my stuff."
       "That's it? You're quitting? You're choosing methadone over this job?"
       "I'm choosing lack of pain over this job."

  • Wilson goes to see House who has hired a hooker to watch him sleep in case he stops breathing. But that is not what amazes Wilson. "You shaved." Then House asks Wilson to help him choose between two ties and again Wilson is almost speechless. "You have two ties?"

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    Wilson comes away thinking House is happy or at least not miserable and he tells this to Cuddy and Cuddy offers House his job back with conditions. House gets back just in time to solve the case and sees the entire case as his fault. Whereas the idea that the methadone might kill him never stopped him from taking it, this does and when Cuddy offers him a dose, he says, "I'm done with methadone. I screwed up."
       "The kid's parents wanted the MRI."
       I knew he didn't need it. I did it anyway. That's what got him sick."
       "You just solved a case that no one else could solve."
       "I created a case. I played here because I was in a good mood. Because I didn't hurt."
       "You don't need your pain to be a good doctor."
       "I'm not interested in good."
       "You're afraid to be happy."
       "Why do you care if I'm happy."
       Cuddy pauses then says, "You're afraid of change. The only thing you have is your intellect. You think if that's compromised, you have nothing." She offers him the dose of methadone. "Just take it."
       "No. It's already done. This is the only me you get." And he limps out using his cane for support.
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