Fourteen hours into their shift, the intern headed down to the lobby to pick up the delivery. Today it was Indian food. He struggled to push the elevator button while holding the bags but managed to make it up to the top floor ICU. The rest of the surgeons gathered around the table cluttered with spent pens, journal articles and unused bottles of lidocaine to eat. Someone offered up their ...

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Since the beginning of a new academic year is fast approaching, here’s some heartfelt advice. You might need it, I hope you read it and heed it. If you’re just beginning your medical school journey, the first line is written specifically for you, but the rest of the piece is pertinent for any doctor, at any age and any stage of their careers. If this is your first day of med ...

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Match Day is the culmination of a medical student's education: the day all graduating seniors and non-traditional applicants find out where they will spend the next three to seven years to train in a desired specialty. I fell in love with obstetrics and gynecology (OB/GYN) as it was the perfect way to combine my passion for women's health with medicine and surgery. I also liked that the patients were relatively ...

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The bedrock requirement to obtain informed consent before patients may be enrolled in research has been eroding. I’ve documented the different ways and different reasons for this several times over the years ("Informed Consent for Babies: When Experts Disagree," "Informed Consent in Infant Research: Ethical Problems Remain," "Informed Consent in Comparative Effectiveness Research," and "The Erosion of Informed ...

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Recent research from Florida Atlantic University and Cleveland State University have found a direct correlation between preventative health care and the number of paid sick leave days a worker gets. Workers with more than 10 paid sick days annually access preventative care more frequently than those without paid sick days. Preventative care, in turn, leads to better overall mental and physical health. Doctors that are in private practice function ...

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Both patients and providers realize that an internist is different from a surgeon, but specifically how they differ and how this affects their approaches to patient care is largely under-appreciated. Over the last four years, I have conducted over 250 interviews with physicians across specialties and institutions about what they do and why they do what they do. With each project, I continue finding remarkably distinct, specialty-specific values, perceptions, and ...

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In the 1984 rock mockumentary This is Spinal Tap, a fictional band discusses the controversy surrounding one of their album covers. “There’s such a fine line between stupid and ...” the lead singer says, realizing where they’d crossed the line of tastefulness. His guitarist finishes his thought, “... and clever,” he says. In life, in rock and roll and in medicine, there is indeed a fine line between stupid and clever. During ...

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A patient with progressive neurologic disorder had a gastrojejunal tube placed for feeding. In a nursing home, the tube fell out and was replaced with a Foley catheter. He was sent to the hospital for placement of a new tube. When he arrived in the interventional radiology suite, the Foley catheter was not visible. A new gastrojejunal tube was successfully placed, and the patient was sent back to the nursing ...

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My last operative day was October 15, 2009. My last attempt at getting to understand my group disability policy was on May 10, 2018. I’m a disabled anesthesiologist who lost his career when my left median nerve stopped functioning properly. I had two disability policies, a private and a group. My dealings with these two companies have been day and night. My group insurance carrier hammered my dignity for years. In ...

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During my pediatric surgery training, I could easily point out which was the hardest day for the three fellows that were under training on that specific year. It was late evening when I received a call that one of our patients had coded. I was at home, and the drive usually took me exactly seven minutes. Due to social reasons, this patient was in the hospital with us for months (at ...

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