shutterstock_111214139 A chief resident about to graduate wrote the following to me:

I just read -- twice -- the New Yorker's review of Henry Marsh's memoir you tweeted about. Wow. It seems like he is grappling with so many of the things I'm feeling now, as I'm trying to sort out if I'm trained "enough" to head out into the world. Of ...

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shutterstock_110078714 In Bill’s room were his doctor, a medical scribe, a physician assistant, and a medical student. Not an imposing group, but in that moment each of them knew more about what was happening to Bill than he did. They were strangers who held keys to his fate. The doctor first instructed the scribe to generate an electronic note. Then, he turned his ...

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shutterstock_145263814 I tossed and turned during many sleepless nights as a cancer patient. Some nights from nausea, some from pain. Some from sadness, some even from being cold without hair. There were nights where I feared my next surgery or next treatment. Nights fretting about the scan or blood work -- had it spread? Would I see my graduation in 3 months? ...

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shutterstock_115412092 At my institution, we have a decades-old tradition known as Girls’ Night Out.  Once a year, the female surgical attendings treat the female general surgery residents to a night out at a fancy North End restaurant.  At its infancy, in the late 1970s, the dinner consisted of the only two female members of the department of general surgery.  It has since ...

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shutterstock_141076960 As someone who has practiced hospital medicine up and down the East Coast for the last several years, I’ve had the fortune of working with some absolutely terrific colleagues. The hospital environment is by its very nature a busy and hectic one -- where we all put our heads down and work tirelessly at the coalface for hours on end. Doctors ...

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shutterstock_239583778 There was once a woman whom I met for the first time when she came to the ER, on death's door, metaphorically. I told her and her family just how seriously ill she was, and how slim the chances of survival. We all agreed on that day to take a shot at it -- at survival, that is -- despite lousy ...

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There is much to learn as a new physician, but some patients teach you things you never meant to learn. This happened to me a few months ago. I was taking care of a 26 year old who had an end-stage, inoperable brain tumor that was causing progressive seizure activity. He was admitted with a headache. He had just been discharged about one week ago with similar symptoms. We treated his ...

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shutterstock_50607919 Physician, heal thyself. That's the unwritten rule, sadly, for us. I am a physician. I am therefore invincible and inhuman and all the things my patients cannot be. To seek help is a sign of weakness, and our profession has no place for the weak of body, mind or spirit. We work through illness because our patients deserve that and disease and ...

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One of the core components in transforming a practice is team-based care, and this concept consistently is a focus of many conversations among physicians across the country. My employer, the Quillen College of Medicine at East Tennessee State University (ETSU), also has embraced this concept. And the outstanding group of interprofessional educators with whom I work are constantly looking for ways to enhance not only the way we provide team-based ...

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NoPRT-640x480 Here’s the latest medical fad: Physician resiliency training. Huh? Doctors are already the most resilient people on the planet. Doctors can go days on call without eating. I know. I have. Doctors can go 24 hours without a bathroom break. (Yes, we even have the most resilient bladders!) Doctors can work 168-hour shifts with little or no sleep as detailed in this whistleblower video. Doctors ...

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