They say to be a good doctor, you have to leave everything behind when you enter the exam room. You walk in with a clean slate — shiny and sterile, crisp, clean and decontaminated. I wonder if that’s why we wear a white coat? To symbolize the unscathed, untouched and pristine figure who walks into the room and solves all the problems. The one who just woke up from a ...

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It has been a struggle to get out of my own way. I’m sure many of you have the same feeling. My health and well-being have suffered mightily from the stress of taking care of others in my work as a physician. I have not taken care of myself. Period. My career does not make me unique in this situation, as the patients I treat every day suffer from similar ...

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The words were like bitter candies that I had been sucking on, hoping to come to a sweet center. I had walked the hallways of the hospital holding them in the silky pocket of my cheek for weeks. Finally, afraid I would choke, I spit them out into the middle of the dinner table. “I think I’m depressed.” I stared down at the tablecloth, moisture collecting on the base of my water ...

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My name is Lucy. I have stage IV liver cancer. I wanted everything done — even though the doctors told me this disease is terminal. My family, my church and my friends were praying for “the cure.” Though I believed in God and the hereafter, I wasn’t ready to go. 74-years-old with beautiful children, grandchildren, and a great-granddaughter. I woke up confused. In the background — wherever I was — I could hear ...

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A guest column by the American Society of Anesthesiologists, exclusive to KevinMD.com. I love to see the pure joy that floods over mothers as they hear their new baby’s first cry!  The ability to help make childbirth safer for mothers and babies led me to a career in obstetric anesthesiology -- in the high-risk, high-reward ...

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A few months ago a nurse I know vented her frustration at a misperception she had received several times, unfortunately. She recalled a conversation in which someone had asked her in a condescending manner if she does anything else at work besides “handing out pills.” I became visibly irritated at this, not only was this person purposely making disrespectful comments to bring her down but was also perpetuating her own biased ...

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I am a resident in a fancy hospital in New York. We focus a lot on value-based care, and technological innovations, and high reliability. This year, we are opening a multimillion-dollar new facility for specialty medical services. Our outdoor spaces have stone lions and grassy promenades. Our cafe serves world-class food. Today, during a beautiful new spring morning, I watched my colleagues sit, in disbelief and despair, crying with each other ...

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STAT_Logo Doctors shouldn’t lie to their patients, even now when the parsing of words and the telling of white lies is common at the highest level of our government. But they do it all the time — sometimes for personal reasons but most of the time for what they believe is the good of their patients. As ...

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A doctor is working down their long list of patients, powering through the day, striving to use their skills to get them better. Some of the patients will be follow-ups who they already know; others will be brand new patients, who they are meeting for the first time. Of course, the job of any doctor is first and foremost to heal their patient in whatever way they can. That’s what ...

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We’re all human beings, but we’re not all alike. Each person experiences pain differently, from an emotional perspective as well as a physical one, and responds to pain differently. That means that physicians like myself need to evaluate patients on an individual basis and find the best way to treat their pain. Today, however, doctors are under pressure to limit costs and prescribe treatments based on standardized guidelines. A major gap looms ...

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