As a medical student, I have encountered more emotional and psychological pain as a direct result of my training than I could have previously anticipated. My pain may not be physical (though sometimes it is secondary to sleep deprivation), but it is real. I look around me and am reminded of who I do not want to be, and the kind of person I would dread becoming. At first, I ...

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Someday, we may miss the quaint idea of going to see your doctor for your medical concerns. I realize taking your children to see their doc is a pain. So is taking your car into the mechanic, waiting for the cable guy or going out for groceries. There are other things you’d rather be doing with your time. Can a quick phone call substitute for a doctor visit? At least one huge ...

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I don’t want to dramatize the death of a nineteen-month-old girl who passed away this summer from wounds secondary to child abuse. I just want to document that it happened. That in late August, as I was signing out my patients to the resident taking over for me in the ED, an infant was wheeled in who was found by EMS in asystole with a body temperature below 90 degrees Fahrenheit. ...

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Naturopaths hate it when I draw attention to examples of patient harm resulting from naturopaths failing to uphold medical standards of care. The Ezekiel Stephan case was a prime example of the harm that can come from naturopaths trying to play doctor. Nineteen-month-old Ezekiel Stephan died in 2012 from bacterial meningitis after his parents sought medical advice from naturopath Tracey Tannis. Per Tannis’s recommendation, Ezekiel’s parents treated him with ...

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As of September 15, 85 children from 33 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico have died due to infection with the flu during the 2015-2016 season. Piper Lowery, who was a healthy and vibrant 12-year-old girl died from H1N1 Influenza almost one year ago.  Her mother, Pegy Lowery, has gone public with her daughters’ story, to urge more parents to get flu shots for their children.  I ...

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“C-section at OR 3,” said the clerk at the neonatal ICU (NICU). We then sped to the prep area to enter the OR as soon as we could. Once geared up, we entered the OR and waited for the new addition to the NICU family. Mom had no prenatal care, but we knew she had used multiple illicit drugs throughout the pregnancy, she was young, had a history of psychiatric disease, ...

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Codeine is a terrible choice for treating children’s pain and cough, and we ought to just stop using it. It’s like an old yogurt container, way at the back of your fridge -- sure, it was once tasty, and then for a while, you held on to it for sentimental reasons. “Remember that yogurt?” you’d say to your spouse. But it’s well past time to throw that stinky stuff away. For ...

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“Listen, when I was your age, I did the same thing …” The words came out of my mouth too fast for my frontal cortex to weigh them or to monitor, let alone modulate, the intensity of my delivery. He was a relatively new patient, 17 years old, scheduled for a well-child exam. A tall, athletic young man, he was alone in the exam room. His right arm was in a sling. “What ...

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"Medicine is not for boys." That's what my 7 year old recently very emphatically told me. My son is not interested in becoming a doctor because it is for girls. He then suggested I discuss medicine with my 3-year-old daughter because she's a girl. My son instead prefers to be a fire fighter, soccer player, or superhero, or maybe a dentist because some boys still actually do that -- but definitely not a ...

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Spanking is an extremely common form of corporal punishment, generally used against a child in response to a perceived bad behavior. It is an old-fashioned form of punishment that has the potential to cause more harm than good. It is clear that spanking may be effective in causing immediate obedience, but this effect is short-lived. Corporal punishment has been associated with adverse effects in childhood, such as causing the child to ...

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