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Blog Posts (2270)

August 24, 2015

The "Dark Side" of Medical Education?

It is rare that a medical journal would publish an essay by a physician anonymously which describes the "dark side of medicine" and perhaps including the "dark side" of medical education.  The article is in the August 18 2015 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine 
and in an editorial  in the same issue, the following:

We hope that medical educators and others will use this essay as a jumping-off point for discussions that explore the reasons why physicians sometimes behave badly and brainstorm strategies for handling these ugly situations in real time. By shining a light on this dark side of the profession, we emphasize to physicians young and old that this behavior is unacceptable—we should not only refrain from personally acting in such a manner but also call out our colleagues who do. We all need the strength to act like the anesthesiologist in this story and call our colleagues “assholes” when that label is appropriate. We owe it to ourselves, to our profession, and especially to our patients. 

So this "dark side" can be said to also involves those of us in involved medical education such as myself.. Perhaps  medical educators are inadequately inspecting and controlling the content of the "hidden curriculum" being presented to medical students  and  not facilitating advice and support for those students and doctors who witness "dark behavior" to "speak up"  to the perpetrators but also to superiors in administration. 

By the way, if you want more, read the article in Better Health
an immediate response to the Annals essay.   ..Maurice.

Graphic: From Google Images and modified by me with ArtRage and Picasa3.

August 24, 2015

View from the Head End [EOL in Art 105]

From  Steve Yentis, A View from the Head End: Medical Cartoons to Ease the Pain.
August 24, 2015

Do Not Leave Definition of Death Just to Doctors

Andy Ho lucidly explains how the definition of death is value-laden, synthesizing a lot of recent philosophical and medical literature.  The issue is more acute in Singapore, because organ donation is presumed and opt-out.   "They make a val...
August 23, 2015

Ohio bill would forbid abortion of Down Syndrome pregnancies

An interesting article in today’s New York Times, about an effort in Ohio to forbid abortions if the motive is to avoid having a child with Down Syndrome. Heather Bellegia-Ernst, a mother of a child with DS, notes that nine out of ten DS pregnancies are aborted (I think her facts are a bit skewed)and […]
August 23, 2015

Futility Dispute - Mary Jane Pierce v. B.C. Women's Hospital

In April, Mary Jane Pierce was born prematurely at 25 weeks with serious health problems. She has cerebral palsy and has suffered multiple hemorrhages that damaged her brain.  Next month, a BC court will decide whether B.C. Wo...
August 23, 2015

Prescription for Medical Students: A Day at the Art Museum? [EOL in Art 104]

A study just published in NEUROLOGY (abstract here) shows a new way to help medical students learn about dementia - at the art museum.  "A day at the museum might be a wise prescription for helping students become compassionate doctors and g...
August 23, 2015

600 Days of Death - Jahi McMath

DocBastard posts some good thoughts on brain death and the Jahi McMath case by Cory Franklin, a retired ICU physician from Cook County Hospital in Chicago.  Franklin had a shorter version of his remarks in the San Francisco Chronicle.

"Any time you have a diagnosis with an outlier, it’s a good idea to review your original assumptions. In this case our assumptions about what brain death actually is."

August 22, 2015

Stop Futile Treatment - Be Surgeons, Not Sissies

At a recent panel discussion on geriatric medicine at Westmead Hospital (in Sydney) several leading specialists agreed doctors should be “surgeons not sissies” and objectively evaluate the prospects of successful treatment.

One surgeon, Henry Pleass, remarked:  “I work quite closely with physicians in renal transplantation and I’m amazed sometimes these people are still being dialysed. . . .  I think: ‘Why on earth are they doing that?’ because they are dialysing a corpse, so to speak."

August 22, 2015

Music Thanatology [EOL in Art 103]

Check out this NYT article on music thanatology.
August 21, 2015

Man Experiencing First Real Moment of Peace in Years Resuscitated

The Onion is so funny, because it is so true.

"Interrupting the only moment of genuine peace the man had known in several decades, a team of paramedics reportedly resuscitated area resident Alan Taborsky this morning following an apparent cardiac arrest."

"Reports indicated that just as Taborsky had reached a state of complete relaxation in which he felt unburdened by his life’s troubles for the first time in recent memory, medical technicians wrenched him back into consciousness with a pair of defibrillator pads."