Apparently yes, according to this malpractice lawsuit:

In a unanimous opinion last April, however, the Texas Supreme Court overruled that decision and upheld the trial verdict. While most patients might not be expected to volunteer where the pain began, a physician-patient like Axelrad would be under a greater obligation to report such information, even if the treating doctor didn't specifically ask about it. Since a jury "must consider a ...

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An important study for sword swallowers worldwide:

In his report, published in the British Medical Journal, Mr Witcombe wrote that sword swallowers knew theirs was a dangerous occupation. Because he could find only two reports in the literature of injuries from the practice, he canvassed almost 50 sword swallowers to explore their technique and its side-effects. "Sore throats - 'sword throats' - occur when swallowers are learning, when performances ...

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Cardiac CT scans

Kudos for this responsible look at the trade-offs and risks of cardiac CT scanning:

Coronary CT scans are being sold directly to the public, and they have found a market in health-conscious people who can afford them. But screening exams can have downsides. They can cause needless worry, and they sometimes reveal other potential conditions that require invasive procedures like biopsies to diagnose.

The older a person is, ...

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Religious bigotry

What to do if a patient refuses to be seen by a Muslim doctor.

Interestingly, foreign grads and older physicians:

The markers included an increased likelihood for international medical graduates. It is important to note that this in not a reflection of these doctors knowing less, but a reflection of the culture and environment of where they were trained and what disease patterns might be like there. In other words, if the international doctor came from an environment where most diseases were bacterial rather ...

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Physician shortages continue, this time in Idaho:

She tells a story about a woman in Massachusetts who was excited about getting health insurance when her state began subsidizing it. But when the woman tried to get a doctor's appointment, she was disappointed.

"She was going to have to wait six months to see a physician she would consider her primary care physician," Allen said. "That is the crisis. ...

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Why is this pathologist doing almost 1,800 autopsies a year?

According to his comments on the stand, he performs anywhere from 1,500 to 1,800 autopsies a year. The National Association of Medical Examiners (NAME) says a medical examiner should perform no more than 250 autopsies per year. After 325, the organization refuses to certify an examiner's practice.

"You can't do it," says Vincent DiMaio, author of Forensic Pathology, ...

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HIPAA strikes back

40 hospital employees are suspended after leaking George Clooney's medical information to the media.

EMRs and ROI

Don't expect much of a revenue boost. Any wonder why EMRs are so slow to spread?

One way to objectively measure value is return on investment (ROI). The news our survey delivers on this front isn't particularly good. For every two respondents who say they have earned back in efficiency and revenue what they invested in an EMR, three say they have not. That's despite the large number of ...

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So much for the mid-levels taking over primary care:

The most surprising finding of the article is that there is a trend for PAs to choose jobs outside the primary care fields. . .

. . . Nevertheless, Dr. Jones finds ""¦the distribution of PAs in the primary care settings of family medicine, general internal medicine, and general pediatrics was 50.8% in 1996. By 2006, only 36.1% were reportedly ...

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Alternative medicine is taking hold at one of the most prestigious trauma centers in the country.

Hilarious, subliminal catch.

Gotta love it when the ACEP meets. Some strange and interesting studies are presented.

Physicians took personality tests and ER docs certainly are a breed apart:

The test breaks personality types down into several categories: Impulsive Sensation Seeking, Neuroticism-Anxiety, Aggression-Hostility, Sociability, and Activity. Emergency medicine residents scored in the high range more frequently in every category than family medicine residents. The difference was only statistically significant in one category, but it's a notable one: "Impulsive Sensation Seeking." A tad more than 19% of ...

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Nurse assault

A job hazard that should get more attention.

Organisms that live within a toxic waste pit are being used in cancer research.

Hospital IT interview

Robert Scoble interviews a physician working in the IT department of a Stanford hospital. Here is the digest version of the enlightening interview.



(via The Medical Quack)

Like oil and water:

In the US, we have a consumerist society where the patient, now a client, makes the decision themselves. It's a little like picking out a purse at Coach, "I want two preventions and a diagnostic."
In a society where "more testing = better medicine", saying no to patients will be the death of any cost-containment/single-payer reform.

It really should be the arteries, says Sid Schwab, but that wouldn't sound as good.

The BMJ is warning that Europe should avoid the problems stemming from DTC ads that are plaguing the US and New Zealand:

The authors warn that allowing DTC ads in Europe will not help consumers make better decisions about medicines but will increase the pharmaceuticalization of health and will expose more of the population to new medicines (many of which offer little benefit over existing medicines) at a time ...

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