During my third year of medical school, I completed a clinical rotation in surgery. I was certain that it would be horrible. I envisioned myself in the OR, getting lightheaded, passing out onto the sterile field and being yelled at by my attending physician. I worried that the medical knowledge I'd worked so hard to learn would be neglected in favor of memorizing the steps of surgical procedures. My parents, ...

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“Come on, bring it on! Come on, bring it on!” the little girl repeatedly chanted behind the drawn curtain in the pre-op holding area. I pulled the curtain back and peered in to see my young patient in the bed and happy as a lark, her mother was sitting next to her trying to contain her laughter. Other patients and staff members giggled as they passed by, hearing this mantra ...

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Marie Kondo, the best-selling guru of organization and “sparking joy” has established the foundation of getting a space organized and functional. Her do-it-all-once method, known as the KonMari Method, is considered healthy and life-altering for those seeking organization and productivity in their space. One of the ideal places to organize is the home office especially for doctors, nurses and medical professionals who have reading, studying and research to do. You ...

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In 1741, a French physician named Nicolas Andre coined a new word, Orthopédie, and published a book on the topic. Andry described how physicians and families could correct or prevent skeletal abnormalities in children. At that time, the treatment methods were entirely non-operative because the development of general anesthesia and the concept of non-emergency surgery were still a century away. So Andry stressed the importance of his message in two ways. ...

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I recently received a scathing email criticizing an article I wrote about the care of patients in underserved areas. “Should you really even get to write articles about poor, underserved populations when you run a concierge practice?” the author wrote. “This is called hypocrisy. You are what is wrong with the medical field.” What the author of this email didn’t know was that I spent six years working for the underserved ...

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My friend, Lello Tesema, and I were sitting in a restaurant in Harvard Square. It was the first, feverish bit of spring when it seems like the entire city has emerged en masse from their winter dens. We were sitting outside under patio lights, wearing regular clothes instead of our usual scrubs. I should have been happy. As often happened in those days, I asked Lello if things were ever going ...

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John and I met as young children and were high-school sweethearts. We married and put him through college and had four children during the process. He joined the Air Force to pay for medical school, and we spent four years overseas to help pay off the costs of his education. We recently counted how many years of his life were spent being educated. If you go back to the beginning and ...

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I have spent the greater portion of my 20s enduring a premature quarter-life crisis. Patterns of self-doubt and debilitating anxiety became my new normal. I was rejected from medical school — again. After taking time to process the reality that I would have to wait another year to re-apply, I fervently journeyed through a messy jungle of introspection that led me to these six lessons. Although I learned more than I could ...

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“Welcome to our clinic. May we take your order?” Many patients have Googled, Yahoo'ed or Bing'ed their symptoms way before I even lay eyes on them in an examining room. And they have a schema of what they’ll be getting out of the visit. If the encounter takes a detour -- the diagnosis is not in line with what they believe they have, or they are about to stroke out from unmanaged ...

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