shutterstock_216140242 Question from a reader: "What are your feelings about when a patient breaks up with you? I love love my doc, but ..." Patients “break up” with me all the time. Well, not all the time, but it’s not uncommon. There are many reasons, some of which are under the patient’s control, and some which are not. Moving across the country is ...

Read more...

A version of this speech was delivered May 14, 2015 to the graduating class at the University of Manitoba. I’m not a doctor. I never will be. I’m a lowly journalist. I tell stories.  For almost 30 years, I’ve tried to help Canadians understand their health system and their medical care. In that time, I’ve seen tremendous advances in medicine and I’ve met, quite literally, thousands of health professionals, from students to ...

Read more...

Medical student Justin Dubin gives an engaging talk on the Socratic paradox and how it applies to medicine. Part of the Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School Med Talks 2014 series.

I hate to be the bearer of bad news.  Sorry to say, breast cancer touches everyone.  If there is no one that you love that hasn't been affected by breast cancer, just wait.  It's coming. I have had personal experience with friends and family with breast cancer.  There's Tina, who was my roommate in medical school.  There's my mother, now a survivor for 20+ years.  I have already flirted ...

Read more...

shutterstock_117895975 I often wondered what got me here. I am a reader. Give me a book, an apple and a bus ride home and I was lost in the words. Send me to school and make me create 3x5 word cards for hundreds of new words and I was hooked. Then off to high school where science gave me a new vocabulary. ...

Read more...

DoctorsThankPatients-640x480 I’m a family physician in Eugene, Oregon -- a sweet town where folks are pretty darn friendly.  I still do house calls. Patients often surprise me with gifts. And nearly every appointment ends in a hug. Kindness is contagious. I like to return the favor. So every few weeks I celebrate “patient appreciation day.” I thank patients with balloons and chocolates. Why? For ...

Read more...

shutterstock_228969187 Racism and prejudice are endemic in America. Many of us reflexively answer, No, if we are asked if we are prejudiced. I don’t. I say yes. While I do my best to give everyone a fair shake, I grew up in a white suburban family in the latter decades of the last century. My friends, my parent’s friends and all those we ...

Read more...

shutterstock_265206557 In case you were wondering -- robots won’t replace anesthesiologists any time soon, regardless of what the Washington Post may have to say. There will definitely be a place for feedback and closed-loop technology applications in sedation and in general anesthesia, but for the foreseeable future we will still need humans. I’ve been practicing anesthesiology for 30 years now, in the ...

Read more...

shutterstock_87958063 It’s a Monday morning, and two patients wait expectantly for the cardiologist. Instead, they get me, a fresh resident. “I don’t know why I’m seeing you,” says the first. I bumble through the chart and find a note indicating he has a large atrium on his most recent echocardiogram. “So, what surgery do you have coming up?” I offer, to get ...

Read more...

shutterstock_213583006 In the world of health care, we face a lot of questions and challenges. Hospital administrations across the country are grappling with these and always on the lookout for solutions. As far as raising the standard of health care quality, there’s been great progress over the last several years in the areas of patient safety, adhering to best practices, and trying ...

Read more...

shutterstock_161227907 Many people used to believe that Facebook was an extremely defensible business and that it would be almost impossible for another social network to compete. It has grown to an enormous scale with massive troves of data and more than 1.5 billion monthly users. The thinking around their defensibility was that because all of your friends and photos and updates are already stored on Facebook, it ...

Read more...

shutterstock_133750277 In the movies, pain is glorious. The runner pushing to the edge. The magic of childbirth. The soldier battles impossible odds to conquer. Pain? “Suck, it up, maggot, pain is nature’s way of telling you that you’re alive.” But, to the cancer patient, in the real world? Pain is nature’s way of saying “you may soon be dead.” For a patient suffering ...

Read more...

caitlyn_jenner_e This piece will likely draw ire from many, but I do not intend it to be inflammatory.  I write it to explain why Bruce Jenner’s recent, and very public, transformation into Caitlyn shouldn’t necessarily make us feel all warm, fuzzy, and optimistic.  This is not meant to insult or degrade any individuals who are transgender or merely confused about their own ...

Read more...

shutterstock_119970649 Ask any premed student what they fear most and the answer will always be the MCAT, or Medical College Admission Test. After 25 years, the MCAT is being revised, becoming longer (by three hours) and covering a broader range of topics than simply chemistry, physics, and biology. One-quarter of the new test covers "psychology, sociology and the biological foundations of behavior." ...

Read more...

will-work-4-likes For physicians interested in growing their social media presence, this is what not to do. James Chang is a radiologist and author of Oh Doctor, The Places You Will Go… He blogs at Poor MD and can be reached on Facebook.

shutterstock_222192721 There’s a simple way to define value. Ask why we exist. Imaging exists because clinicians are uncomfortable with uncertainty. Imaging exists because emergency physicians feel that being 98 percent correct about the absence of pulmonary embolism is not good enough. Radiologists exist because imaging is not an assay on a Western blot with a 100 percent accuracy. Radiologists exist because information is ...

Read more...

A continuing series on physician online reputation.  Created in partnership with The Doctors Company as part of their social media resources for physicians There are two ways that physicians can establish their online reputation. The first way is to use existing physician rating sites. What physician rating sites will do is create a profile page of every single doctor in the United States. This ...

Read more...

academicMedicalCenterTwitter Ever since I began residency, I have been encouraging, prodding, and at times, persistently pestering department leadership of my belief that our ophthalmology department should have a dedicated Twitter feed. After months of persistence combined with good timing and supportive leadership, the Twitter feed was launched on June 1, 2015 for the University of Iowa department of ophthalmology and ...

Read more...

A patient undergoing a colonoscopy pressed "record" on his smartphone before being sedated, hoping to capture instructions from his physicians after the procedure.  What he heard instead was shocking: "In addition to their vicious commentary, the doctors discussed avoiding the man after the colonoscopy, instructing an assistant to lie to him, and then placed a false diagnosis on his chart." The incident cost his anesthesiologist $500,000 in the ensuing malpractice and defamation ...

Read more...

shutterstock_252181402 In 2008, at the age of 22, I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism and began my experience with the American health care system and how to care for myself in it. When I was in the process of diagnosing my illness, I went to Oregon Health and Science University in Portland to meet with an endocrinologist and have my ultrasound results interpreted. ...

Read more...

Most Popular