It was Friday night, and after a long day of grossing, I was ready to leave the hospital when the department’s door opened, and the nurse shouted, “we have a frozen for an emergency liver transplant.” Without hesitation, I took the specimen and called the attending on call. After a few minutes, the surgeon arrived anxiously to our reading room. “We flew all the way from Pennsylvania to get this ...

Read more...

My first clinical rotation as a third-year medical student was in orthopedics. I remember the excitement of being scrubbed into the OR, with the gloried task of suctioning while the fellows did the real work. About 30 minutes into the surgery, when things were getting underway, a male physician scrubbed in and took the tool away from me — I grabbed it back, letting him know I had the ...

Read more...

She shook her head no, eyes brimming with tears, chin quivering with emotion. Again, I told her that without further care, her son would never have use of his arm and possibly would die. Her voice trembling, she told me her husband would beat her if she returned home without the boy. She placed her son on their horse, his newly bandaged arm in a make-shift sling. I gave her ...

Read more...

This is not what I signed up for. Have you ever said this when you are rushing home 1.5 hours after the last patient left and you still haven’t finished all your charting? You grab a handful of forms to take home with you with the hopeful expectation that you will get them done tonight too. After you have done “enough” to appear to be a present parent and prepared supper ...

Read more...

Even if you have a great health insurance plan, you may be faced with large unexpected medical bills that can significantly impact your finances and may lead to medical debt. High deductible plans, the rising cost of care, and high-cost treatments for conditions ranging from cancer to COVID-19 can put almost anyone at risk for medical bills that put strain on their budget. In fact, about a third of adults ...

Read more...

With 2020 behind us and the pandemic still raging, it is incumbent upon us to take a close look in the rear-view mirror. While the vaccines' approval gives us all hope, the vaccination initiative's slow rollout should worry us. Physicians, health care providers, nurses, and essential workers, and patients and family members have borne the brunt of the pandemic. On the last count, about 3,000 health care workers had lost ...

Read more...

“Oh, but don’t worry, they’re fresh!”  We were not talking about produce, and this was not reassuring.  The conference speaker was scheduled to teach a Botox training session the next day - using cadaver heads. When I had initially signed up for this physician seminar on facial cosmetic rejuvenation, there was no mention of cadavers. I left the session wondering exactly how “fresh” he meant and feeling a sense of ...

Read more...

The day before the United States border with Canada shut down to non-essential travelers, my mother left Chicago to take care of my grandparents who lived by themselves in Ottawa, Canada. With the COVID outbreaks at nursing homes, she took it upon herself to stay with them as long as they needed her. During the following months, my grandpa sustained another heart failure exacerbation, and my grandma was diagnosed with ...

Read more...

I just started laughing. It was early on Monday morning during our COVID surge. I couldn’t help myself. Phones were not on yet, but I already had triage COVID calls.  “Put on your roller skates” was all I was thinking. I questioned my laughter. The day and a life of a primary care physician during COVID. Not a fun one by any means. Certainly not one to laugh at. But, if ...

Read more...

The reality is just setting in: I’m months away from finishing my family medicine residency! I want to yell it from the mountaintops, but let me also channel my elation into some advice. This is for the next generation: all you phenomenal DO and MD students who are on the cusp of becoming physicians.

In deciding where to rank highly, I cannot overstate the value of being ...

Read more...

Most Popular

✓ Join 150,000+ subscribers
✓ Get KevinMD's most popular stories