I recently found something I had lost. Or rather, I found someone I had lost. He was a dear friend from my childhood. We spent days and nights roaming the woods near our homes, catching crawdads and minnows in the creek and turning rocks over to look for banded water snakes. We shot bows and arrows and rode bikes. Standard Appalachian stuff, that. In the winter, we would sled until we ...

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051809+Maureen+Dowd+p1 If I’m to take fashion advice from Maureen Dowd’s March 3 column, “Stroke of Fate,” a take-down of emergency medicine disguised as a recovery narrative of her niece, then I should exchange my white coat for grease-stained overalls. In her column, a Harvard neurology professor who specializes in stroke describes the brain as the Rolls-Royce of the human body. When it ...

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I just stepped out of the administrative building at medical school and hear a big commotion. I look over and see an elderly male slouched on the ground bleeding profusely from his mouth and nose.  Blood is soaking the front of his collared shirt and pooling on the ground. Bystanders are making a scene and not sure what to do. I drop the items I'm carrying and calmly approach the man and ...

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ZDoggMD's take on prescription drug abuse, set to Taylor Swift's "Blank Space."  The comments from the video are all over: Is it, as one commenter notes, "a genuine reflection of the issue of drug-seeking patient behavior," or, "offensive to people who are truly suffering"?  You decide.

shutterstock_263483609 Emergency medicine physicians: Could these be your cases?

  • A 35-year-old presents with shortness of breath and numbness to the legs. CXR and EKG are normal. She is discharged to see her doctor in two days, but is found dead at home. Autopsy reveals a dissecting aortic aneurysm.
  • A 15-month-old is triaged to fast track and seen by a physician assistant for fever, lethargy, ...

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"She's safe," my friend and fellow resident told me over the phone just hours after reaching his Mom in Kathmandu. A text from my undergraduate Hindi Professor read, "My own family is safe. But it’s hard to comprehend the amount of loss. My own house in which I was born is gone." Calls, texts, and emails over the last week have been reassuring in the midst of media depictions of ...

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shutterstock_173706362 With the flurry of Twitter posts about Maureen Dowd’s article “Stroke of Fate” in the New York Times, it almost seems as if the subject is already stale. Maureen Dowd is the Pulitzer Prize-winning op-ed columnist for the New York Times who tells a compelling story about a young patient who suffered from a stroke. The patient was healthy triathlete, ...

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“I need a doctor in here!” As I walk into the resuscitation room in the emergency department (ED), I see Mr. G, a cachectic elderly gentleman barely holding onto his breath. After a rapid assessment, it is clear that he is tiring and cannot maintain breathing on his own for much longer. “We need to secure his airway” -- with my command, the resident applies an oxygen mask, cracks open the ...

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As an internist, working in the emergency room feels at times like the dark underbelly of medicine. The frenetic pace, the need to make decisions within highly uncertain conditions, and reliance on technology all cut against the grain of the internists credo of “being a doctor’s doctor.” If internists are biased in how they arrive at diagnoses, emergency medicine doctors face such bias on an exponential scale. Clinical decision-making is ...

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shutterstock_191393468 A recent publication from the Mayo Clinic created a lot of buzz regarding the use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV), or drones, in medicine. However, in reality, most of the drones being used or tested in the U.S. are for things like aerial photography, small package delivery, and surveillance. While several corporations have been quick to expand existing applications ...

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