It was around 2 p.m. when a 380-pound woman came into the ED. She was in her late 30s. The physician went to see her and then ordered IV fluids, some basic blood tests, and a urine sample. At a hospital, everyone’s job is made harder when a patient is obese. Getting the patient on the bed requires more personnel. Inserting an IV -- an intravenous catheter to infuse fluids or ...

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Today, I talked at length with that lady whose husband has Creutzfeldt–Jakob disease (CJD). That patient -- the one with arbitrary myoclonic jerks, always naked and uncovered by blankets due to uncontrolled flailing, his penis and Foley catheter exposed. That one with overgrown mycotic toenails and eyes that are always only half-open, his gaze drifting everywhere. He was until now just a patient for me -- the CJD patient. Yet today ...

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