by Ashwin Patel As a MD/PhD candidate, I enjoy learning how medicine interfaces with other fields. I found that MDs that have ventured into these fields have the best stories and insights to share. I recently had the privilege of interviewing Dr. David E. Albert, MD. He's a physician, a successful inventor with 30+ patents, and a serial entrepreneur. He has sold two of his companies, one to ...

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by Andrew Schutzbank, MD “He wants to go to Atlantic City for his research time?” must have been the question bouncing around my residency’s Area of Concentration (AOC) Committee. Not that there is anything wrong with Atlantic City per se, but historically, our residency program generously grants three to six weeks of AOC time to allow residents to explore interests and ...

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I have had the pleasure as a medical student to complete my clinical clerkships in the Baltimore area community hospitals, the Johns Hopkins Hospital, and the National Institutes of Health. I will forever cherish these experiences and lessons as I progress through my career. With an educated and wealthy suburban population and a large disadvantaged urban population; Baltimore is symbolic of the challenges and opportunities the healthcare field faces. There are different ...

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I don't know what your destiny will be, but one thing I do know: the only ones among you who will be really happy are those who have sought and found how to serve. - Albert Schweitzer The middle-aged Tanzanian woman lived many hours away and had traveled to the academic medical center in Moshi. She had now waited all day to see ...

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Researchers want us to believe that science is transparent and self-correcting. When someone makes a mistake, he or she owns up to it. That's what corrections and retractions are for. But that's not what happens at some medical journals. Instead, retraction notices read like doublespeak: "The authors have identified inconsistencies within the data that may have affected the results of the study." That one turned out to be because of faked data. You ...

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I was in practice about five years and was about to do a radical nephrectomy on a patient. I met with the patient and his son in my office and the son informed me that he and his father were Jehovah's Witnesses and that he didn't want his father to receive any blood or blood products before, during, or after surgery. I asked the father if that was his wish and he ...

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Every day, mental health clinics, emergency departments, psychiatric hospitals, physicians’ offices, counselors’ offices, school counselors and police officers are faced with an almost impossible responsibility. It is a responsibility, a burden, often highlighted retrospectively, after a tragedy. Their job is this: identify every dangerous person, treat them properly and avoid horrific events like the recent murders in Tuscon. I sympathize greatly, since I work in the emergency department of a hospital ...

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by George Van Antwerp Should you pay physicians for medication adherence? I’d love to hear some physician perspectives on this.  It’s a question that comes up every once in a while. Let’s start with a few facts:

  • Adherence is estimated to be a $290B problem
  • Poor adherence limits the effectiveness of the healthcare system
  • Interventions do impact adherence
  • There are lots of reasons for non-adherence
  • Medication adherence leads to lower healthcare costs
The question of ...

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If you need laser eye surgery in the state of Kentucky, or a little cosmetic work around the eyelids, it now behooves you to ask your prospective surgeon the following question before signing the operative consent form: "Say doc, did you go to medical school?" Kentucky joined the company of Oklahoma earlier this year as the second state to conflate optometrists and ophthalmologists. Only ophthalmologists are the sort of doctors who graduated ...

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A failed treatment, a surgical complication, a medical error, a patient death. When the going gets tough, even the toughest clinicians should get help. Physicians and nurses who feel personally responsible for a medical error or a patient’s injury face an immediate quandary—their next patient. In the midst of your angst and guilt, do you suck it up and soldier ...

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