Having been surgically trained and surgically-minded, I've had expression ingrained in my psyche such as "a chance to cut is a chance to cure," "when in doubt, cut it out" and "nothing can heal like cold, hard steel." Indeed, as a surgeon, I see patients in my office and in the hospital with the specific question of whether or not surgery is indicated, what type of surgery and how urgently ...

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On January 21, 2017, the day after the 45th President of the United States was inaugurated, hundreds of thousands of women and men marched in thousands of cities across this country and others to stand up for rights of women, men, and countless groups that have been ostracized or are at risk for losing rights, representation, or critical funding. I watched my Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram feeds throughout the day. ...

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The other day, I was operating on a little girl with a congenital ear abnormality. Not life and death stuff, but delicate surgery nonetheless. My surgical scrub technician was someone with whom I hadn't worked before, and I asked him if he was enrolled in the operating room nurse training program, as many of the new folks are. "No, I'm just a tech." I stopped what I was doing and replied: "You ...

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Recently, new dietary guidelines were released, recommending reducing sugar intake overall, and reducing meat intake in growing boys.  Last year, as we remain in the throes of a nationwide obesity epidemic, the FDA changed the nutritional labels we’ve become all-too-familiar with. The emphasis is now on calorie count of an "appropriate" serving size. So much for my pretending that the "appropriately served" pint of ice cream I just downed had 350 ...

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In September 2010, a seasoned pediatric intensive care unit nurse administered an accidental overdose to a critically ill baby, giving ten times the amount of calcium that was prescribed. Five days later, this baby, with an already tenuous heart condition, died. The nurse recognized her mistake immediately, informed her superior, and also told the family and physicians. She was, however, escorted out of the hospital, put on administrative leave, and ...

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The other day, the mother of a nine-week-old baby girl called my office in a panic.  Her daughter was having terrible breathing trouble, with coughing and wheezing.  She asked to been seen that day, and of course I said yes. I asked mom how the baby had been doing overall, and she said that she’d had some noisy breathing as a newborn, but all was well until the past few ...

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