Things I wonder while waiting for the nurses to bring me the death notification book
On Friday I spent the afternoon in a tug of war. On one side were me and my colleagues and on the other was whatever happens after you die. The Light, heaven, hell, nothing, I don't know? I just know that it was a tug of war between life and death, and life lost. In … Continue reading Tug of war
In January this year, I found myself staring at a CT scan with a group of people in white coats. This is a pretty normal thing for a doctor to be doing; except I was in Mexico and the CT scan was my own, and I was wearing a hospital gown instead of a white … Continue reading The lessons that being a patient taught me about being a doctor
He is so thin, I think. Emaciated, I write. But what does that mean? "Skeletal" "Gaunt" "Shrunken" "Shrivelled". "Emaciare" is the Latin: "Made thin" I think it means if you don't look close enough you might not see him. You might not see beyond his disease. HIV, TB, malnutrition, starvation, poverty, oppression, suffering. Hopelessness. An … Continue reading Made thin.
Why are doctors so quick to criticize one another? What is it about the medical culture that enables us, not only to easily recognize but actively seek out one another's mistakes? When did we forget that we are all human? Why does it take a colleague losing their life over a mistake before we show … Continue reading Doctors, let’s be kind to each other.
Chapter One: A whole new world Who would have thought, a year ago, that today we would be walking around in masks; we'd need permits to be out of our houses after 9pm, international travel would be banned and that the only alcohol we'd be allowed to buy would be in the form of hand … Continue reading Covid Diaries
Things that Internal Medicine has taught me so far… Before I start I need to vent - If another person asks me what Internal Medicine is, I am going to lose my mind. When you say Orthopedics people are like “Oh a bone doctor!” and when you say Paediatrics they say “Ag, sweet man, little … Continue reading Internal Medicine: Like heart attacks and stuff.
Just as in life, you meet people who you will never forget, the same goes for medicine. Most patients’ names and faces all blur together. Someone will greet you in the shop and you have absolutely no idea who they are until they announce loudly that you once banded their hemorrhoids. There are a few, … Continue reading Unforgettable Patients
Things I learnt in 2016 1. The patient is always right (even when they most definitely aren't) Example: This young fool who told me he has encephalitis, forcing me to do a lumbar puncture (LP) only to tell him what I already knew - that he has flu. But alas he was still convinced he … Continue reading Standard New Year’s Eve Reflection Post.
Things the "on-call" doctor loves to hear: So I haven't posted something in a while because I've been on leave, and therefore lacking the relevant inspiration. But my first day back I was on call (on a Sunday, fantastic!). Thankfully the on-call gods were kind to me and I had a gentle start. I even … Continue reading Music to a doctor’s ears