Colonoscopy and defamation, perfect together?

Among a collation of (nut)cases Lowering the Bar calls “Assorted Stupidity #61,” is this one:

A colonoscopy is unpleasant enough without having the doctors make fun of you during it. But this wasn’t “defamation,” as the plaintiff claims, because the statements weren’t “published.” Just because the plaintiff “inadvertently” recorded the insults on his phone while he was under anesthesia doesn’t make that a “publication.” (Example: <to unconscious guy> “Really, after five minutes of talking to you in pre-op I wanted to punch you in the face.”)

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