- Park: "Are you coming?"
- Chase: "Why didn't your lips move when you said that?"
- Park: "(As Chase is waking up) Chase! Are you coming? Liver biopsy’s back."
- — Body and Soul
Body and Soul is an 8th season episode of 'House which first aired on April 23, 2012. The team treats a young Asian boy whose grandfather is convinced he has been possessed by an evil spirit. House, after hiding from Dominika the fact that she's received her citizenship and is free to leave him, has to confront his feelings for her and the sudden increased intimacy of their relationship. However, it appears that Dominika may have been keeping things from House as well. Speaking of intimacy, Park and Chase start having dreams about each other and those spill out into the dynamic between the team members.
A young boy sleeps peacefully. All of a sudden, he is awoken by a mysterious figure, who attacks the boy. However, his mother enters the room and sees he is having a nightmare. The boy awakes and his mother comforts him. The boy says he is having trouble breathing, but his mother thinks it is merely anxiety and tries to calm him. However, the boy loses consciousness and his mother desperately tries to rouse him.
Foreman is waiting for House as he arrives at the hospital. Foreman is angry with House because he’s been ignoring pages. Foreman tells him about the boy - an 8 year old with severe respiratory distress. However, there is no history of allergies or asthma and his chest X-ray was fine. When Foreman mentions the nightmares, House dismisses the case as a stress induced panic attack. However, House gets intrigued when he learns that the nightmares are about an ugly old woman who is trying to strangle the boy. Foreman confirms the boy is of Hmong descent.
House comes to his team telling them about SUNDS, a syndrome of unexplained sudden death that only affects Hmong males. The team discuss possible diagnoses and House settles on the prosaic explanations of pneumonia and toxins. Park asks to go with Taub because he’s going to look for toxins like she suggested. House says he think’s she’s avoiding Chase because she’s been having dreams about him. House also tells the team to read the voluminous files he’s brought to the conference room.
The mother assures Chase she doesn’t believe in demons.
House breaks in on Wilson in the exam room while he’s doing a breast exam on a patient. Wilson tries to throw him out, but as he gets House to the door, House tells him he had an erotic dream about Dominika. Wilson shuts the door on him.
Taub reassures Park that having a sex dream about Chase is perfectly normal. He says that he’s had many such dreams about people he works with. Park points out that Taub frequently does have sex with people he works with. They suddenly smell something. Park thinks it smells like a wet dog, but Taub thinks it’s mold. However, when they investigate, they find the patient’s bedroom smeared with blood and fresh animal parts arranged around the room.
Taub and Park confront the mother, but she doesn’t know what they’re talking about. However, when they said the animal was a pig, she turns to her father-in-law, who admits to doing it and says that’s what they should have done when the boy started having nightmares. All of a sudden, they hear alarms from the patient’s room. He’s having a heart attack. Taub uses the defibrillator and manages to shock him back into sinus rhythm.
They go to talk to House about the heart attack, but he’s more interested in the dead pig. Park tells him it’s a traditional ceremony to restore the boy’s soul. Taub has found out that the grandfather also feels the boy’s father has the same problem - the mother lied about the father moving away after a divorce - he’s in prison for killing his boss. Park dismisses a suggestion of PTSD because the father went to prison when the patient was two. House dismisses Chase’s suggestion of doing an EP study because it doesn’t fit with the other SUNDS cases. Taub suggests pericarditis - it would get worse when a patient lay down to sleep. House agrees to an echocardiogram and tells them to scan the samples from the house for toxins that affect the heart.
House comes to Wilson’s office bearing food to discuss his erotic dream about Dominika. However, Wilson has a different interpretation - House is guilty about throwing away Dominika’s citizenship confirmation. He tells House to tell her the truth.
Park and Chase are working in the lab, and he tells her not to worry about sex dreams. Park asks him if he’s ever dreamt about having sex with her. He denies it, but she accuses him of fighting the idea because he finds it abhorrent. However, their pagers go off. They continue to discuss it as they go to the patient’s room. Taub and Adams report there’s nothing wrong with the heart, but he has severe abdominal pain from constipation even though there’s no sign of an intestinal blockage on the ultrasound. Park reports that the environmental scan was clear. Adams wants to do an exploratory colonoscopy to clear any blockage, but Chase has an idea - Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, and suggests a thyroid biopsy.
House is having Chinese food with Dominika in his office. He lies to her and tells her it will be 2-4 weeks before they hear back from the Immigration and Naturalization Service. She says that it’s okay because she has fun living with him, although she really wants to be a citizen.
Adams goes to do the biopsy, but the patient resists the lidocaine. His mother tries to get him to co-operate, but all of a sudden, the boy talks harshly to her in a foreign language. The grandfather says it’s Hmong for “It‘s too late. There‘s nothing you can do“, but the mother says the boy has never been exposed to the language. The grandfather says it’s the Da speaking through him. The boy has a seizure. Taub calls for lorazepam.
Chase notes the seizure rules out Hashimoto’s, but Taub wants to focus on why the patient is speaking a language he’s never heard before. However, House thinks the patient was speaking gibberish and the grandfather heard what he wanted to hear. Park suggests scleraderma, but House is more interested in how she and Chase are reacting - neither is looking at the other. Adams hits on a satisfying zebra, Rasmussen’s encephalitis and House orders an MRI.
Chase explains the diagnosis to the mother, but the grandfather tells him he’s wrong and is wasting the patient’s time. The grandfather says he remembers when his own son had the same dreams. Science couldn’t help him either. He insists his son wasn’t suffering from a mental illness either. Chase asks him not to tell the patient - it will only scare him and won’t make him better.
Park and Taub do the MRI on the patient. Park tells Taub she dreamt about him, but when Taub is interested, she says she was just seeing what a typical response should be - the person is usually flattered like Taub was. Taub tells her that she and Chase are getting along just fine and that she shouldn’t let House screw it up.
House takes Dominika to a shooting range. She’s good, and she admits she was a police woman for a year. House gets a page that the MRI was normal, but tells Dominika that doesn’t mean the team is right about there being nothing wrong with the patient’s brain. Dominika asks House why he believes in dark matter but not evil spirits.
The grandfather tells the patient that he’s angered their ancestors. He asks the boy to help him ask for forgiveness, but tells the boy that the evil spirits are in the air and that he has to suffocate him. However, it’s just another nightmare, but the mother can’t wake him up. Taub comes to help. The patient finally wakes and tells them to get his grandfather away. The mother and Taub assure him that the grandfather is no where near him. The boy insists the grandfather tried to choke him, and when Taub examines the boy’s neck, he sees bruising consistent with strangulation.
House thinks the bruising caused the dream, and not the other way around. He also wants to continue to talk about Park’s dreams about Chase. They return to the patient and determine it’s most likely hepatic fibrosis. House orders a liver biopsy.
Taub and Adams do the biopsy while the mother discusses how the boy’s dreams are having physical manifestations.
Park finds Chase alone in the conference room. They discuss how they’re avoiding each other and Park gets mad when Chase suggests she likes him more than he likes her. After a terrible argument, they stare at each other, embrace each other and start kissing passionately. Park pushes him onto the couch and tears off his shirt. However, Chase hears Park calling him and awakes from his sex dream about her. Park tells him the biopsy results are back.
The biopsy is negative. The nurse calls and the doctors come in to watch the boy float over his bed.
Taub and Adams swear to House that the boy was levitating, but House dismisses it again. He does a levitation trick right in front of them to show them there’s probably a rational explanation they haven’t thought of. He also wants to know why Chase seems to be avoiding Park. Chase changes the subject by suggesting the patient is hypocalcaemia. House orders electrolytes and beta blockers. House then tells Park that he thinks Chase had a sex dream about her. Chase leaves saying dreams don’t mean anything.
However, the mother is resisting treatment. She wants to let the grandfather perform a ceremony. She says if they won’t let her do it there, she will take the patient home. However, despite her earlier denials about believing in spirits, she believes that it’s the only explanation for her husband’s crime and her son’s behavior.
House goes to Foreman, but Foreman doesn’t see a problem. House threatens to quit if Foreman puts superstition above science, but Foreman calls his bluff and says allowing the ceremony isn’t the same as saying the beliefs are true. However, when House brings up dead animals, Foreman agrees to talk to the mother.
The mother says she’s not going to deny her son treatment, but she wants to try everything. Foreman explains that they run a hospital, not a temple. She says she will take her son someplace else, but Foreman says he’s too ill to transport. The mother threatens legal action. Foreman asks for 24 hours.
House arrives home to find Dominika on the phone crying. She’s holding a letter. House thinks it’s a letter from immigration. He goes to explain, but Dominika bursts out that she’s just found out that her aunt has been put into a nursing home and her mother hadn’t told her. House gives her a hug. He agrees to stay in that evening.
The patient is still having trouble breathing and becomes unresponsive. Adams can’t revive him. The mother says she’s calling the grandfather.
The grandfather starts a ritual. All the tests are negative. House says if the mother has given up, he wants to give up too. Chase says a patient or parent being an idiot never stopped them before. House points out that if they do manage to cure him, the grandfather’s ritual will get the credit. However, the rest of the team starts another differential. As they argue, House comes up with the idea of a patent ductus arteriosus. It was closed up by an infection, but re-opened when they gave him antibiotics for pneumonia. Adams points out the treatment is just ibuprofen - very low risk. Chase thinks House just doesn’t want to treat because if they succeed, the mother will become religious. House asks everyone else if they think his billion-to-one shot is right. They don’t and he decides since they don’t agree, he’s not going to treat.
The ritual proceeds. Taub gets permission to put the patient on the schedule for the operating room. However, the patient’s blood pressure starts to drop and Taub calls a code. They ask the mother to stop the ritual, but she refuses. Adams decides to give the patient ibuprofen anyway.
House is at home. Dominika wonders why he is sulking. He says either religion is killing a kid, or he is. Dominika snuggles up with him and kisses him. He draws her closer. She starts undressing. However, he gets a phone call, and he decides to ignore it. However, Dominika sees the call is from Immigration and Naturalization. She grabs the phone before House can. She gets the good news, but they tell her they have sent several notices without a response. House says he’s sorry.
The patients vital signs start to improve. They realize he will make a full recovery. Adams says it was the ibuprofen, but the mother is convinced it was the ritual.
Dominika packs her things to leave and hugs House goodbye.
Chase is waiting for an elevator when Park comes by. She asks if she was good. Chase says dreams don’t mean anything. She says they do - that he either wants to have sex with her, or that they like and trust each other despite their differences. She breaks wind to test her theory.
House tells Wilson that Adams defied his orders and Dominika moved out. He says he’s surprisingly depressed about Dominika moving out. Wilson says that he has cancer. House thinks Wilson is just trying to get back at him, but Wilson says he has a stage II thymoma. It’s just been confirmed.
For once, House just sits there, stunned.
- Chase and Park have sex dreams about each other.
- Dominika finds out that House was hiding the fact she had received citizenship. She leaves him.
- Wilson reveals that he has cancer.
Zebra Factor 8/10
A patent ductus arteriosus is a rare condition, but it is commonly diagnosed in children the patient’s age. It is a less of a stretch here than it was in the episode Big Baby.
Trivia & Cultural References
- Oysters Rockefeller are oysters on the half-shell topped with butter, bread crumbs and a secret green puree of vegetables, then baked or broiled.
- The Hmong are an ethnic group that lives in the mountainous region shared by Laos, Vietnam, China and Thailand. The Hmong in Laos had to flee the country after a civil war.
- The Dab Tsog is a figure in Hmong mythology which sits upon a victim while they are asleep, making it difficult for them to breathe and not allowing them to awake.
- A Luau is a traditional Hawaiian feast.
- *69 is the common telephone code to identify the last caller to a telephone line.
- Higgs boson is a theoretical particle that, if found, will explain how quantum fields fill space and why quarks and electrons have mass.
- A Luffa or Loofah is a sponge made from a dried plant similar to a cucumber.
- The New York City Marathon is an annual foot race that, except for 2012, has been held every year since 1970.
- The levitation trick that House performed depends on the viewer’s perspective. The illusion is achieved by holding the heels together and the right foot straight out while the left foot is used to lift the weight of the magician and the toes stay on the floor.
- Shakira is a popular Colombian-born entertainer.
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