I remember September 27, 2018 like it was yesterday. When Ashley* picked me up from my apartment Thursday morning, I thought it would be like the 138 past Lyft rides I’ve taken since 2017. I was wrong. After I waived to Ashley from the curb, I got settled into the right back seat. The doors locked, and she asked me the usual question. “You from here?” “Yes, I’m a local.” “That’s great! I’m from ...

Read more...

Studies have shown that video games and other addictions, such as alcohol and nicotine, affect neural pathways in similar ways: They all lead to an increase in dopamine levels in specific pleasure centers of the brain. While drugs increase dopamine levels far more than video games, gaming can have a similar deleterious effect of “taking over” a person’s life. One of the key ways that gaming addiction differs from other addictions is ...

Read more...

I lost my attending to suicide. A lot of things about life changed that day. In the days of grief that followed, I was consoled by my mentor who suggested we meet outside on a patch of grass near the hospital. As we shrinks say, we needed time to emotionally process. I remember being grateful that I was going to get fresh air. The hospital felt suffocated by the all too ...

Read more...

“I drank beer with my friends. Almost everyone did.” Alcohol has become constitutional to American culture: “grabbing a drink” after work, happy hour, cheers before meals, on New Year’s, or just because. Our society’s normalization of drinking creates a slippery slope toward excessive alcohol use. Unhealthy alcohol use is rampant: one in six Americans drinks excessively four times a month, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). Almost thirty percent ...

Read more...

"Ms. Taylor*?" "Yes, it's me. I'm so deeply sorry to you and the team. You all helped me so much when I was here. But I started drinking a day after I left and blacked out." Two weeks ago, Ms. Taylor was found by her sister lying unconscious on the bathroom floor after a week-long alcohol binge. Next to her was a suicide note. "My depression is robbing me of my freedom. I ...

Read more...

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 ...

Read more...

Advocates for the legalization of medical and retail marijuana are quick to point out all the possible benefits that a community might see from such a venture. These include increased jobs, increased tax revenue, possible medical benefits and they advertise it as “safe” and “healthy” and “organic.” Many people who have voted for legalization thought they were talking about the marijuana of the 1960s to 1980s when the THC content ...

Read more...

We learn about it in school as a formula. There is a checklist that we are given, and we ask our patients these eight questions and then calculate whether or not they have depression. It’s so simple. Anyone can do it! I never once thought that I would be calculating my own score at the prime of my education. I entered medical school full of hope after years of failures and ...

Read more...

Marijuana has been used for reported medical purposes for thousands of years when the plant had THC content of 0.5 to 3%. The most common reported medical use is for pain. Several states and the District of Columbia have some form of legalized marijuana, with many states having legalized for recreational use. There has been discussion about how cannabis will help curb the opioid epidemic. It’s been reported that medical cannabis ...

Read more...

The day is etched in my memory. The knock at the door. Two detectives and one police officer. I knew the news was bad. We sat at our dinner table, and the dreaded words came: “Your daughter is dead.” “How?” I asked. “She hung herself during the night.” My body went numb, and the moment became surreal — like I was watching myself in a movie rather than being part of the conversation. ...

Read more...

69 Pages

Most Popular

Join 147,000+ subscribers

Get the best of KevinMD in your inbox

Sign me up! It's free. 
close-link
✓ Join 148,000+ subscribers 
✓ Get KevinMD's 5 most popular stories
Subscribe. It's free.
close-image