The discussion reminded me of an attending plastic surgeon of mine during my resident days. He was one of the most obsessive-compulsive people I ever met. When he applied a dressing, he always cut the tape with scissors instead of tearing it. He felt that torn tape looked sloppy, and that if a patient saw a ragged edged of torn tape, she might think that the surgical procedure itself had been done without meticulous care too.
When he wrapped a hand, he used a very bulky dressing with yards and yards of carefully cut, not torn, tape over the ace bandage to prevent from slipping or unraveling.
But my favorite eccentricity was what he told patients who had any sort of facial surgery. He had a thing about the role of movement of skin possibly causing scars to separate and permanently widen.
So he gave this written instruction to every patient who had so little as a facial mole removed, "Do not talk or chew for 10 days."
Think about it. Could any patient possibly comply with that? Some of us more cynical types figured that should a scar not have turned out perfectly, the conversation might have gone like this.
Surgeon: "About your scar, you must have talked or chewed during the first 10 days after surgery."
Patient (sheepishly): "Well doc, I must admit I did say a few words, and I had to eat something."