I walk by the closed double doors and frosty windows of the ICU. You’re lying in there, intubated. It feels weird to go to work now. I can’t see you or talk to you, don’t know the drips, don’t know the plan ... and it’s killing me. I, along with many others, desperately want to express my love. So many feelings are swirling inside: Guilt. For having a chill workday that ...

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There is a wealth of information about your health circulating in your blood. For people with diabetes, accessing that information can be a matter of life or death. For nearly 30 years, the prevailing technology for checking the blood sugars of someone with diabetes has been the fingerstick. People with diabetes are often asked to stick their fingers and check their blood multiple times a day to assess whether their blood ...

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This article is sponsored by Careers by KevinMD.com. When George W. "Billy" Campbell, MD, walks down the street, he never knows who — or what — he's going to encounter. Anything can happen when you're the doctor at Foothills Family Medicine of Westminster, South Carolina, a small town with a population of only 2,500. "I've had someone pull ...

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Test your medicine knowledge with the MKSAP challenge, in partnership with the American College of Physicians. A 42-year-old man arrives for follow-up consultation. Three months ago he developed a proximal right leg deep venous thrombosis following a skiing-related fracture of the right tibia. Although not recommended by guidelines, a thrombophilia evaluation was performed, which revealed an elevated plasma homocysteine level, and subsequent genetic testing revealed ...

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For longer than anyone could remember, he was the rural community's pharmacist.  A skilled compounder of prescriptions, he was conversant in chocolates, greeting cards, and how to obviate a trip to the doctor's office by using an over-the-counter remedy. A devoted family man, he was involved in many civic and church activities. Most have forgotten all the roles he once played in the community, but no one will ever forget that ...

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It was during the first few weeks of medical school that I realized that I was joining a secret society. Like many physicians, I was called to medicine at a young age. For me, it was Doctor Beverly Crusher from Star Trek: The Next Generation. I admired her — I wanted to be who she was and do what she did. (More or less, my dreams of space medicine transmuted ...

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I was moved when a family entrusted me to give a eulogy for their beloved. This great privilege highlighted a hallmark of a physician’s service to humanity: “to cure sometimes, alleviate often, but comfort always.” But I was horrified to learn that his death at the hospital may have been the result of a preventable error — one that was withheld from the family. Sadly, that patient ...

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I came across Dr. Kevin Tolliver’s post, "Beware the Limits of Telemedicine," and found it to gloss over the benefits of telemedicine and the opportunities that increasing telemedicine uptake can afford to the patient and provider. With this post, I aim to show that these opportunities for systemic change to the health care delivery model – particularly driven by telemedicine – surpass the listed limitations of telemedicine. The ...

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Patients legally using medical marijuana (cannabis) at home may be stunned if they are admitted to a hospital because many hospitals may prohibit them from using it. In the United States, medical marijuana is legal in 31 states, and research shows that medical marijuana can effectively treat pain — but patients beware. The issue of medical marijuana is a complicated one, and patients may be precluded from ...

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In Dr. Suneel Dhand’s article, “We can do a better job with hospital discharge paperwork,” he advocates for physicians to do a better job at creating discharge instructions that are more appealing and easier for patients to understand. After all, coherent patient instructions are a crucial part in ensuring that patients are able to adhere to our recommendations, including taking appropriate medications, following up on ...

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Imagine being a cancer patient afraid of seeing an oncologist because they would likely need to discuss chemotherapy and all the lifestyle changes that it entails. Imagine being a patient with heart failure afraid of seeing the cardiologist because they may be prescribed a diuretic to remove excess fluid from their body and may need dietary counseling. Imagine being a patient with severe rheumatoid arthritis with excruciating joint pain, who ...

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STAT_Logo My son, Luke, was born 18 months ago with myelomeningocele, the most severe form of spina bifida. Luke and our family have faced many challenges: premature birth at 26 weeks due to complications after in utero surgery for spina bifida; a 171-day stay in the neonatal intensive care unit; 10 surgeries since birth; and more. Throughout ...

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At a quality and patient safety meeting recently, one of the departments was presenting their annual report on all they have done, reviewing progress that has been made around several quality and patient safety initiatives. One of their project centered on efforts to decrease an incredibly high no-show rate. Coupled with their desire to avoid overbooking appointments, the problem has compromised patient access, both for their own established patients and for new ...

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The United States spends more on health care per capita than any other country in the world — yet health outcomes continue to fall short. In order to close the spending gap with other countries, United States health care policy must focus on reducing costs. While a variety of suggestions have been put forth by economists and medical professionals on how to cut spending and improve health, one Read more...

Well, they are calling it the golden age of rectums! The trends are simple and straightforward. First, Baby Boomers and beyond are aging and staying alive longer. The gut, a hidden culprit behind many ailments, requires continuous maintenance. Colonoscopies, EGDs and ERCPs. These require services of gastroenterologists (GIs) who are always in short supply (14,000 in the U.S.).4 Second, gastroenterology practices are fragmented like hotels were before the Hilton. Regulatory, technological and ...

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Most urology practices in the United States do not employ male nurses or assistants, even in larger cities. This is a serious problem because approximately 75 percent of urology patients are male. Often people wrongly assume that men don't care about their modesty. In many cases, this is simply not true. Societal norms say men are not supposed to be modest that this is a sign of weakness. From childhood, males ...

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The stethoscope. Nothings says “I’m a doctor” more than the stethoscope in a pocket or draped around the neck. Forty-five years ago when I got my first one, a gift from my physician-father, the former was more common. Then we were more likely to wear coats — white coats or suit coats — and pockets were available. I had suit coats in which the lining was worn out from the ...

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I am writing this from the perspective of a woman physician in academic medicine. I am a mid-career cardiac anesthesiologist who works in several national organizations and serve on various committees and boards. I have learned a lot from serving in national medical societies, made great friends this way, and been able to feel a sense of accomplishment in being a part of change within my specialty. That is why I ...

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We all know that there’s a remarkable shortage of physicians in America and that it’s growing worse.  This is especially true in primary care but it’s present across all specialties.  This shortage alone is a significant stress on practicing physicians.  But when it is coupled with corporatization, the increasing complexity of medical care, unrelenting electronic charting requirements and the explosion of administrative tasks, physicians barely keep up each day. This is one of the ...

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If you can’t beat ’em, join them (and make it better).  Am I right?  This was some of the sentiment I felt as I registered with FINRA (Financial Industry Regulatory Authority) to take the Series 65 exam.  Passing this exam will allow me to register in my state as an Independent Advisory Representative (IAR) and function as a financial advisor.   This begs the question: Why should I become a financial ...

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