shutterstock_138966065 There isn’t any such thing as an ordinary life.  - Lucy Maud Montgomery Heroes are ordinary people who make themselves extraordinary. - Gerard Way My colleague, Dr. Jesse Ehrenfeld, is currently on leave from his academic anesthesia practice as well as from his post as speaker of the house of delegates for the Massachusetts Medical Society to serve as Lt. Commander Jesse Ehrenfeld, combat anesthesiologist in Kandahar, ...

Read more...

During my residency training in plastic surgery, I remember spending time in the offices of some of our community faculty members. These were invaluable opportunities to gain exposure to the field outside of the academic university hospital, where things were quite different. The university was a large organization where several residency programs and hundreds of trainees were not just seamlessly integrated into the workings of the hospital, but actually required to ...

Read more...

plastic surgery In 2012, in a remote town of San Jose, on the southern part of Occidental Mindoro province in the Philippines, I met a little boy and his desperate, but courageous mother.  The boy was just a few months past his first birthday.  He was born with a facial congenital defect known as bilateral cleft lip, so commonly seen in ...

Read more...

Living in the trenches of a surgical internship can be a gut wrenching, lonely experience for many.  The journey from medical student to resident to surgical attending is a notoriously steep trek, necessitating our long 6+ years of training. Surviving intern year remains as hard as ever despite the significantly greater resources and awareness that exists among residency programs today. These burdens are felt by all specialties and have tragically led ...

Read more...

The following is based on an actual case that occurred a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away. A 65-year-old man arrived in the emergency department by ambulance after being found unresponsive. His respiratory rate was 40 per minute, heart rate was 170 per minute, and temperature was 102.2°. He did not respond to Narcan or an ampule of 50 percent dextrose. Blood sugar was 600 mg/dL. The diagnosis ...

Read more...

michael davidson This week the local and national attention has been riveted on accusations that Bill Belichick and the Patriots football team deliberately deflated the footballs used in the division championship game.  Football, remember, is a multi-billion dollar industry in which the commodity being sold is grown men throwing brown, oblong balls at each other and knocking each other down.  Boston.com, a ...

Read more...

american society of anesthesiologists A guest column by the American Society of Anesthesiologists, exclusive to KevinMD.com. In an emergency, the first question people often ask is: “Is there a doctor in the house?” When you have a medical problem, the best advice is, “Ask your doctor.”  Most people automatically assume that “doctor” in this context refers to a physician with a ...

Read more...

shutterstock_197629736 You are human and fallible. - Charlotte Bronte, Jane Eyre Alas, the frailty is to blame, not me -- for such as we are made of, such we be … - William Shakespeare, Twelfth Night Sha-doo-bee, Shattered … - Mick Jagger, “Shattered”, The Rolling Stones, Some Girls (1978) The image of the surgeon is synonymous with strength. Surgeons are stereotypically charismatic, commanding, confident, even arrogant. Strong minds, strong bodies, strong wills. Leaders, especially ...

Read more...

0121_davidson-620x411 In 1994, I was working at my first radiation oncology job in San Diego at Grossmont Hospital when I came into work to hear disturbing news.  One of my colleagues in medical oncology, a compassionate man known for his gentle nature, had stayed late at the cancer center the evening before to finish up paperwork.  With his back to his ever ...

Read more...

Have you ever wondered about the behavior of surgical residents on Facebook? I have. A study from the Journal of Surgical Education posted online in June 2014 looked at the issue. The paper, "An Assessment of Unprofessional Behavior among Surgical Residents on Facebook: A Warning of the Dangers of Social Media," identified 996 surgical residents from 57 surgical residency programs in the Midwest and found that 319 (32 percent) had Facebook profiles. Most ...

Read more...

Most Popular