Tag: narrative medicine

Blog Posts (10)

February 21, 2017

The Aftergift

“… and maybe then you’ll hear the words I’ve been singing; Funny, when you’re dead how people start listen’n…” If I Die Young (2010) by The Band Perry It was in the fall of 2015 that I received a call from a Mrs. Jones.  She went on to detail how her husband, Robert, had died […]
February 14, 2017

After the Loss of a Patient: Reflection and Connection Through Prose

By Hedy S. Wald Lean machine of prose, stripped down to the essence, and a power-packed way to care for the caregiver… this was my experience of the 55-word story genre1 at a writing seminar.2  While I had some experience writing haiku, I was generally accustomed to reflective narratives3 as “story” so was nothing short […]
January 31, 2017

Anatomy from the Inside: An Anatomist’s Experience as Patient

By Robert Frysztak Many stories have been written by physicians describing their personal experiences as a patient. But I cannot recall reading a similar perspective from a research scientist or medical educator, one who has intimate knowledge of anatomy and physiology paralleling or exceeding that of most physicians.  I would like to share with you […]
December 6, 2016

Lessons Learned from a Beatbox Heart

By Tim Lahey Two days ago, Jimmy stuck a used needle into the soft skin of his forearm, and released 20 milligrams of black tar heroin and a bolus of bacteria into his blood. The bacteria floated from vein to artery as he nodded, eventually sticking themselves to the ragged edge of his aortic valve.  […]
November 10, 2016

Popocatepetl and Iztaccihuatl, a poem by Guadalupe Garcia McCall

A NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR This poem is metaphorically from the cutting room floor, meaning that it was cut from the original manuscript for my novel-in-verse, Under the Mesquite.  My editor at Lee & Low Books, Emily Hazel, and I both agreed that given the nature of the manuscript, our intended audience, and the gentle […]
October 25, 2016

Memento Mori- Reflecting on my Death and the Education of Medical Students

By Laura Creel As part of their undergraduate medical education, students discuss end-of-life care; they hear lectures about valuing the lives and deaths of future patients; they are instructed in the legal issues surrounding advance directives and care planning.  They see death, too—see it in the cadavers that they incise, see it in patients who […]
September 13, 2016

Wait for it

By Tim Lahey At 94, my patient V. was funny and flirtatious.  Her French accent made even the name of her life-threatening fungal infection sound poetic. “DEE-seminated HEESTO-plasmo-sees,” she said, “Oaf the skin.” I smiled. I also admitted her to the hospital because our treatments were not working.  I hoped intensified wound care and antibiotics […]
September 13, 2016

Wait for it

By Tim Lahey At 94, my patient V. was funny and flirtatious.  Her French accent made even the name of her life-threatening fungal infection sound poetic. “DEE-seminated HEESTO-plasmo-sees,” she said, “Oaf the skin.” I smiled. I also admitted her to the hospital because our treatments were not working.  I hoped intensified wound care and antibiotics […]
August 9, 2016

My Patient

By Suzanne Minor The student used the phrase “my patient” six times during the brief patient interaction: “I don’t like my patients to not exercise.”  “I like it when my patients eat healthy.”  “I like it when my patients take their medications” and so on.  Many students use this phrase occasionally, but this was striking.  […]
May 3, 2016

Illness As An Opportunity for Reflection: Enabling the Unseen To Be Seen

By David Leach On March 1st my aortic valve was replaced. I received extraordinary care, was discharged on the third postoperative day, and am doing very well. When I arrived from the operating room to the intensive care unit I had an endotracheal tube, two chest tubes, an arterial line, a jugular vein Swan-Ganz catheter, […]