The "Disney" approach to health care

This non-concierge clinic offers amenities not commonly found:

“I love everything here,” said Laurie Wheeler, who came with sons Justin, 10, and David, 12. The boys couldn’t wait to play their favorite video game. Wheeler, if she wants, can check her e-mail in the patient library/computer room.

A surgeon removes a kidney instead of the gallbladder

It took 3 days before the mistake was noticed:

A physician assistant and a nurse present during the surgery said the surgeon “was working in the exact location you would expect…(the gallbladder) to be located,” according to the DPH’Â’s investigation report.

However, the patient had a lot of internal inflammation and an unusual internal anatomy, which made the surgery more complex, Muller said.

“From a medical standpoint, absolutely …

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Dr. Anna Pou: Here comes the lawsuit fallout

People are going after the hospitals:

The deaths at Uptown’s Memorial Medical Center during the stifling, dark hours after Hurricane Katrina have spawned more than the highly publicized arrests of a doctor and two nurses on murder charges. A predictable thicket of civil lawsuits has also sprouted, records show.

Two suits filed at Orleans Parish Civil District Court concern the deaths of five patients at Memorial, some of them …

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A former colleague comments on Dr. Anna Pou

Due to intense interest in the Anna Pou story, the following post will be republished to stay current.

Original post date: 7/19/2006

Waking Up Costs offers his support:

I just learned that a former colleague and friend has been charged with second degree murder in the death of four patients at a New Orleans hospital after Katrina. I worked with Dr. Anna Pou in the operating …

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The hypertension conspiracy

Dr. Crippen thinks Big Pharma is to blame:

Dr Crippen’Â’s old fashioned” treatment for blood pressure costs a few pence a month, and the drugs he uses (such as beta-blockers and diuretics) have been around for years. They have a proven safety record. They are not going to produce any surprises. The only problem is that they do not offer any profit to the big drug companies.

The science behind home-field advantage

Studies show that home games increase testosterone levels:

Two new studies also show how the hormone may especially peak before home games, and that female athletes likely experience the same hormone flux.

The first study, of male ice hockey players, found higher testosterone levels in athletes competing at their home rink, compared to playing an away game. The other, a Portuguese study of female soccer players, found that …

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Why doctors order unnecessary tests

I’m happy that this study is getting some play in the media. Essentially, many of the “routine” tests done on a physical are not recommended (the whole concept of a “routine physical” is controversial – but that’s for another discussion). Merenstein concludes:

# 37 percent of checkups included a urinalysis.

# 9 percent of checkups included an electrocardiogram.

# 8 percent of checkups included an …

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A news station reveals a doctor’s name after a malpractice settlement

The plaintiff didn’t really understand the concept of a settlement:

“The doctor responsible for Kate’Â’s death pretty much walked off scott free,” Gavoni said . . .

. . . When Gavoni entered his wife’s allergist’Â’s name it said there was a settlement, but that was it. There was no mention of his wife’s death and the doctor was never disciplined.

Cadaver skin

Used for burn victims:

Cadaver skin is removed from donors shortly after their deaths, then processed and distributed by skin and tissue banks. It has long been the preferred option for a patient with the most severe burns until a graft of the patient’s own skin can be applied. Although some synthetic skin has come on the market in the last 20 years, new products have not appeared as …

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NYT – the lost art of medical-school pimping:

Does grilling medical students with questions make them into better doctors? For years, many professors routinely peppered students with relevant and arcane queries, often embarrassing them. Things may be gentler today, but the practice, referred to as the “pimping” of students, still has its advocates.

Bedside manner: An anesthesiologist is alleged to have slapped a 3-year old child. “According to the family, the boy was now having nightmares, waking up constantly saying: ‘Mean lady, mean lady, I don’t want to go back there.’

It is alleged the 3-year-old became agitated last week during a pre-surgical check to have several decaying teeth removed and spat on the female anaesthetist.”

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