Humans need human touch Patients sometimes need a shoulder to cry on. When I say that, I normally mean it on a completely figurative level. However, at times, it needs to be interpreted differently. There are instances in a medical encounter where an actual shoulder could be of service — a physical crutch that takes off an emotional load — and that's when the popular adage can be beneficially carried out in ...

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Fear of exposure I hear from a lot of my professional friends, especially the doctors I'm in touch with regularly, about the fear of diving in — of starting out on their own social media journey. They're watching us all swim around them, paralyzed by the thought of even dipping in their feet. It’s OK to feel that way. We all start somewhere, and many of us have experienced the same ...

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When preparations are underway for vaccinations to take place, my household becomes a war zone. The thought of an impending vaccine, to my boys, resembles the actual possibility of a weapons attack. It is, in essence, a weapon. It's a needle that comes your way and invades the comfort of your normally undisturbed skin surface. But it also serves a purpose — much like the police department does — to protect ...

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I've said it to my patients, and I'll say it here as well. Finding the right provider is crucial when it comes to two providers of medical care — your primary care doctor and your therapist. It makes logical sense. Patients tend to see these doctors most, more than any other specialty. Now, I can't speak for therapy, because it's not my field. While I do engage in a lot of one-on-one guidance ...

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The commentary below is meant to invoke meaningful discourse rather than incite an unpleasant argument. Less than a year ago, I heard Ben Stiller doling out kudos to his heroic doctor who diagnosed him with early-stage prostate cancer by using a simple, widespread screen. What was interesting was that Stiller was actually underage. What I mean is that the star was not of age to be screened, according to current prostate cancer ...

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Back in the grueling training days of my residency, I was the first-hand victim of theft. Not the kind you see on the big screen, where you're held up at gunpoint, or the kind where your belongings get ransacked. It was worse, at least in the way that it made me feel. I had my handbag stolen from me, right from its usual resting place on the shelf near my ...

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"The doctors who did this should be hanged." It's a statement the came at me with a bang. It stood out in its thread, in the accusatory way of old courtroom scenes of black and white movies, where the heroine dramatically screams out at the jury, seated wide-eyed in their box nearby. But it was merely a response to a Facebook post on the topic of the opioid epidemic, typed in nonchalantly, ...

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The setting: an inpatient unit in the Bronx, circa 2005. I was a resident (and hence was likely disheveled, groggy or exhibiting some other outward display of exhaustion) of the internal medicine program at Albert Einstein University Medical Center/Moses Division, aka Montefiore. The fact that the program was considered "malignant" by those in my industry — mainly due to the strict nature of the training program — likely strengthens the possibility ...

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I’m not here to tattle. No siree, Bob. I’ll save that for my kids. But what I am here to do is spell out a story in which I ended up down in the dumps. A medical mistake happened. To me. On me. I’ll never forget it. I can’t because I carry it with me forever. Here’s the short of the long: My obstetrician messed up. She took care of my pregnancy during one of the most ...

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I find interesting how much lies in the fate of the day's mood when it comes to forming a new patient-physician relationship. I can have one of my typical days (and thankfully this is usually the case) in which my mood is great; I stroll into work, after having sipped an entire cup of coffee, maybe nibbled on a Moroccan cookie or two, and donned my white coat and stethoscope, ...

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