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"A doctor, like anyone else who has to deal with human beings, each of them unique, cannot be a scientist; he is either, like the surgeon, a craftsman, or, like the physician and the psychologist, an artist. This means that in order to be a good doctor a man must also have a good character, that is to say, whatever weaknesses and foibles he may have, he must love his fellow human beings in the concrete and desire their good before his own."

Auden, W. H. on Doctors
Hey, it's been a while, eh. Last year had been a very hectic and busy year for me especially for the last two months. So, I haven't find time to visit and post on this particular blog. I kinda miss blogging. Whew! But now, it's another year to posts various medical issues, comments and humble opinions with regards to our health and especially about medical personnel wearing mens scrubs or nurse skirts.


My mom often told me that without the past there will never be a future nor the present. Indeed, the past medical issues that doctors were involved to are one of the bases of our present view on what is right and wrong when it comes to medical ethics. The unethical acts of doctors in mens scrubs before are still the acts that some doctors are doing today and will get even worse in the future. For, I believe that as time goes by, generation from generation are getting crooked and more crooked, eh, and some doctors are not an exception here.


Remember the unexpected death of Michael Jackson? Of course who of us would forget the King of Pop and his sudden death? The world was shocked. But what really got my curiosity at that time was, what could be the cause of death of the famous musician?


Presently, the answer lies in the hands of his doctor, Dr. Conrad Murray. He was accused of negligence and one of the causes of the untimely death of the singer. I read a caption of the ongoing trial today, and I will quote some of the words from two opposing lawyers of the said case.




During closing arguments, defense attorney Joseph Low IV argued the case should be dismissed because prosecutors didn't adequately prove how Murray caused Jackson's death.He also suggested Jackson's health may have been a contributing cause, saying,
"Sometimes when it's your time to go, there's nothing you can do."


Deputy District Attorney David Walgren angrily disagreed.
"In contrast to Mr. Low's comment, let me just say, it was not Michael Jackson's time to go," "Because of Dr. Murray's actions, Michael's children are left without a father."


So, here we could see two conflicting views. Both have their own points and errors. Both can be considered by the judge and even by the people who are watching for the outcome of the trial. And certainly, death is something that we can't avoid, even in this advanced technology of ours. Hospital workers in mens scrubs and womens scrubs can attest to that. However, though we can't avoid death, we as humans, especially the doctors have the choice to fight for the life of his patients. Any actions in particular can either help or kill.


But who has the real point that can hit the fact as well as the conscience of the people and the judge? Well, let's wait till this trial is over, eh.

"Human Touch" is a Need

A while ago I've read one of the articles in The New York Times which showed a doctor's experience on how he had treated one patient who had severe infection of the abdominal wall. The said patient's primary doctors discovered that the bacteria responsible was resistant to most antibiotics so they quickly isolated him, moving him into a single room with a sign on the door proclaiming “Contact Precautions” and directing visitors to put on gloves, mask and gown before entering. This patient died but what bothered the doctor who had written the article is that, "In trying so hard to contain the infection, had we lost sight of the person?"


This is actually one of the questions in the medical world. With the invention of masks, gloves and hospital gowns, could health care provider still provide the proper wellness of the patient, since touch is a very important factor of healing?


With the advent of medical suits and gadgets it is hard to ignore the changes that are happening on every hospitals especially with regards to personal conversation of doctors to their patients and by letting your patients know that you empathize with them.
Simple things like touching people and telling them you care and making them feel you are there for them are one of the best tools of healing.


Is it really a need to compromise between precaution and care? Hope the experience of Dr. Chen is not happening on every hospital around the globe. However in this age of technology it is but common that doctors already lacked this so called "human touch" on their patients affecting the latter and causing them to have depression, anxiety and stress.


Of course many of us experienced to be patients and we know for a fact that we just don't need the medicines that the doctors prescribed in order for us to be well, but we also need the listening ear, soothing voice and healing touch of our doctors and nurses, eh.

Drunkard Doctors are Pain in the Ass

A growing number of doctors are being handed warnings for offenses such as drink-driving and disorderly behavior. The General Medical Council issued 262 ‘reprimands’ to GP's, specialists and hospital consultants last year – an increase of 50 per cent in the last two years. Such warnings are given out for offenses including assault and breach of the peace.

Although they happen out of work and do not endanger patients, they are deemed to be ‘bringing the medical profession into disrepute’, and the individual is given a slap on the wrist. The most common offense was drink-driving, which accounted for 37 of all warnings issued – or one in seven. Many other cases, such as disorderly behavior and assault were also likely to have been triggered by alcohol – prompting concerns that excessive drinking is becoming an increasing problem among doctors.

Indeed alcohol is not just a problem of doctors out there but of all the people who are fond of drinking sessions. I remember my friend who is a professor in college who narrates to me how her classes were affected by her students who go to school who are still drunk or suffering hang overs. In one way or another alcohol affects not just the person who is drinking but even those people around him/her. This is happening to doctors who cannot let go of alcohol. They suffered but those people around them suffered much. It's not only their bodies that are strongly affected but also the reputations of the medical uniforms and white lab coat that they are wearing; I mean the reputation of all doctors as well, even the innocent ones. Whew! What about the good doctors,eh?

The Most Common Doctor's Misdiagnoses

Doctors in medical uniforms  and white scrub pants though had studied for several years on medicine can also have misdiagnosis. And sometimes they can be plainly wrong. Take for instance the following cases from yahoo.health:


1. Diagnosis: Allergies
Real Sickness: Vasomotor rhinitis

Doctors usually blame congestion, watery eyes, and serious bouts of sneezing on allergies, but unless one recently moved or changed jobs, it's rare to develop allergies in your 20s and 30s. These symptoms may be the result of vasomotor rhinitis, a condition triggered by nonallergen irritants, such as perfume, smog, and cigarette smoke, that inflame nasal mucous membranes, says Patricia Wheeler, M.D., an associate professor of family medicine at the University of Louisville.


2. Diagnosis: Torn Meniscus
Real Sickness: Iliotibial-band friction syndrome

The average doctor's first step in diagnosing severe knee pain is an MRI. The test is so sensitive that it almost always reveals tears in the meniscus, the cartilage in the knee joint. "Nine times out of 10, it's normal wear and not the source of the pain," says Ronald Grelsamer, M.D., an orthopedic surgeon at Mt. Sinai Hospital of New York. Surgical treatment "will lead away from the real problem." An MRI won't reveal injuries to the IT band—fibers stretching from hip to knee—a source of knee pain that's treated with physical therapy or orthotics.

3. Diagnosis: Sinus Headache
Real Sickness: Migraines

Researchers at the American Headache Society examined 100 people with brain pain and found 86 percent of those who thought they had sinus headaches actually had migraines. "If a doctor hears 'facial pressure,' he'll assume sinus headache," says Craig Schwimmer, M.D., an otolaryngologist in Dallas, Texas. But sinus meds can't defeat the heavyweight of headaches.

4. Diagnosis: Bronchitis
Real Sickness: Asthma

If you hack it up hard after each cold you catch, the culprit could be "hidden" asthma, says Sidney S. Braman, M.D., a professor of medicine at Brown University medical school. "You shouldn't develop a nagging cough with every cold," he says. "If so, a bug may be triggering asthma you didn't know you had."

5. Diagnosis: Appendicitis
Real Sickness: An inflamed lymph node or stomach virus


Despite advances in diagnostic screening, 16 percent of appendectomies are performed on patients who don't need them, according to a recent University of Washington study. Appendicitis can be deadly, so doctors are quick to remove the 6-centimeter organ before doing a CT scan to confirm the diagnosis. An inflamed lymph node or virus could produce similar symptoms (and not require surgery).

How Beliefs Influence Care

 "Whilst entitled to their beliefs, doctors should not let them come in the way of providing patient-centred care at the end of life."
Dr Ann McPherson of the charity Dignity in Dying

"End-of-life decisions must always be made in the best interests of patients."
British Medical Association


According to guidelines from the British Medical Association, doctors must not allow their religious beliefs to interfere with their treatment of patients. "Whatever your personal beliefs may be...you must be respectful of the patient's dignity and views," the association says. The guidelines also recommend that when patients are unable to communicate their wishes, doctors must not simply rely on their own values, but that they "should take all reasonable steps to maximize the patient's ability to participate in the decision-making process." "The religious beliefs of doctors should not be allowed to influence objective, patient-centred decision-making," they further said.


However,  based from a random mail survey of more than 3,700 doctors across Britain, of whom 2,923 reported on how they took care of their last terminal patients, those with a strong faith were also less likely to discuss end-of-life treatment options with their patients.Those who described themselves as very or extremely non-religious were about 40% more likely to sedate than religious doctors. Being very or extremely religious was also associated with significantly fewer discussions of decisions with patients around treatment at the end of life.Thus the findings entailed that doctors who are atheist or agnostic are twice as likely to make decisions that could end the lives of their terminally ill patients, compared to doctors who are very religious.


Personally though I believe that faith and beliefs can help a lot on doctors, nurses and even dentists in
dental scrubs with regards to their decisions in their profession. On the other hand this study reveals that beliefs can hinder care. Doctors who are believers are more likely to make decisions based from their own beliefs and not on the real interest of their patients. It's so hard to think about the appropriate thing to do here. So I will just turn to you my dear readers. Do you think the beliefs of doctors could help patients or it just hinder the best interest  of patients? Give me your feedbacks,eh. Thanks.

Poll #1611333 How Beliefs Influence Care

Do you think the beliefs of doctors could help patients or it just hinder the best interests of patients?

Yes
1(100.0%)
No
0(0.0%)
Maybe
0(0.0%)

Read more: 
Religion may influence doctors' end-of-life careAtheist doctors more likely to hasten death

“The reason doctors are so dangerous is that they believe in what they are doing.”
Robert S. Mendelsohn


Ironically Dr. Wendy Chapman didn't seem to believe that she had cut the lip of an Harlequins rugby player, Tom Williams to enable the winger to pretend to be injured during a Heineken Cup match. She further apologised for her behaviour and said that even now she could give no rational explanation as to why she breached her professional ethics and then lied to an official inquiry.

As the quarter-final match between Harlequins and Leinster drew to a close on April 12, 2009,and Harlequins were trailing 6-5 against Leinster during the Heineken Cup quarter-final tie at the Stoop, Twickenham, she felt unable to resist a series of requests from Williams, who initially bit a fake blood capsule and further asked for her to “cut it, cut it”.

When officials from European Rugby Cup launched an investigation she lied by telling them she had found blood coming from a wobbly tooth and a jagged-edged wound elsewhere in Mr Williams’ mouth.

"Distressed, ashamed, horrified. I just wanted out of there," Dr. Chapman said about what she felt regarding the incident.



What will happen to this doctor?
Dr. Chapman could now be banned from practicing by the General Medical Council, which has accused her of bringing the profession and even her
hospital scrubs and scrub tops into disrepute by being dishonest.

However she admitted most of the GMC charges, but contests that she told match officials that Williams had a loose tooth in order to deceive them.

She was suspended on no pay from Maidstone Hospital in Kent following the incident.She cannot work until the outcome of the fitness to practise hearing in Manchester, where she could be struck off.
 
 

Humanitarian Medical Workers Killed

"Their mission was humanitarian, and they went there to help people."  

This is sad news for everyone especially those men and women in medical scrubs and nursing shoes who want to volunteer to aid people in other countries specifically if those countries have totally different culture and religion.  

Last Thursday, after a two-week mission in the remote Parun valley of Nuristan  province, about 160 miles (260 kilometers) north of Kabul, a team of six Americans two Afghans, one German and a Briton were killed by the Taliban saying the workers were trying to convert Muslims to Christianity. The gunmen spared an Afghan driver who told police he recited verses from the Islamic holy book the Quran as he begged for his life.. Their bullet-riddled bodies were found Friday, and were returned to Kabul Sunday aboard helicopters.

One of them is Dr. Thomas Grams, 51 who quit his dental practice in Durango, Colo.four years ago to work full-time giving impoverished children free dental care in Nepal and Afghanistan.

He was there to help the people of Afghanistan," said Tim Grams, holding back tears in a telephone call from Anchorage, Alaska on Sunday, after the U.S. State Department confirmed his brother's death. "He knew the laws, he knew the religion. He respected them. He was not trying to convert anybody," Tim Grams said. "His goal was to provide dental care and help people. He knows it's a capital offense to try to convert folks."


Also among the dead is Cheryl Beckett, 32-year-old daughter of a Knoxville, Tenn.pastor. She spent six years in Afghanistan and specialized in nutritional gardening and mother-child health. She was valedictorian of her Cincinnati-area high school and earned a biology degree from Indiana Wesleyan University.

"Cheryl loved and respected the Afghan people. She denied herself many freedoms in order to abide by Afghan law and custom," her family said in a statement. "... Those who committed this act of terror should feel the utter shame and disgust that humanity feels for them."

Glen Lapp, 40, of Lancaster, Pa. although trained as a nurse,  was not working as a medic but served as executive assistant for IAM and manager of its provincial ophthalmic care program. He was a graduate of Eastern Mennonite University and had a nursing degree from Johns Hopkins University, the group said. He had volunteered with relief efforts for hurricanes Katrina and Rita and worked as a nurse in Lancaster, New York City and Supai, Ariz.

Officials have said the victims also included team leader Tom Little, an optometrist from Delmar, New York, who had lived in Afghanistan for about 30 years, and Dr. Karen Woo, who gave up a job in a private clinic in London to do humanitarian work in Afghanistan.

Little had been making such trips to Afghan villages for decades, offering vision care and surgical services in regions where medical services of any type are scarce.

Read more: Slain doctors brought medical care to Afghanistan

The Result of Lawsuit Fears on Doctors

It’s been a long time since I’ve put a post here. Things get quite busy on my work last week and I happened to get colds. Whew!

On the other hand the first thing I’d read when I browse the web is this news from yahoo. Of course this is all about doctors because this is all this blog is all about: men and women in hospital uniforms, medical scrubs and scrub pants.  I also noticed this scenario before however this news further elaborates too much medical care which causes overtreatment. Anyway this is the news:

 

Fast decisions on life-and-death cases are the bread and butter of hospital emergency rooms. Nowhere do doctors face greater pressures to overtest and overtreat. The fear of missing something weighs heavily on every doctor's mind. But the stakes are highest in the ER, and that fear often leads to extra blood tests and imaging scans for what may be harmless chest pains, run-of-the-mill head bumps, and non-threatening stomachaches. Many ER doctors say the No. 1 reason is fear of malpractice lawsuits. "It has everything to do with it," said Dr. Angela Gardner, president of the American College of Emergency Physicians. The fast ER pace plays a role, too: It's much quicker to order a test than to ask a patient lots of questions to make sure that test is really needed.

Patients' demands drive overtesting, too. Many think every ache and pain deserves a high-tech test. Refusing those demands creates unhappy patients. And concern that unhappy patients will sue remains the elephant in the emergency room.

The result can be extra costs, and potential harm — including side effects from unneeded drugs and increased chances for future cancer from excessive radiation. No one tells patients after a CT scan that the test "just imparted three years of radiation to your body as well as significant stress on your kidney, and Medicare just got charged lots of money." Gardner, who works in a Dallas emergency room, said she tries to talk patients out of tests she thinks they don't need, but usually without success.

There are more than 116 million ER visits each year nationwide, national data suggest, and research suggests the number of visits is rising. The most common reasons adults go to emergency departments are abdominal or chest pain. Both can mean something harmless, or deadly. To determine which it is, ER doctors turn to X-rays, CT scans and other imaging tests. In 2006, these were done for almost half of all emergency visits; blood tests were ordered for more than a third of ER visits; medicine, including antibiotics, was given to 75 percent of patients.

One of doctors' biggest concerns with belly pain is appendicitis, and CT scans can confirm it. But the scans often are done in patients without classic symptoms. Patients with suspicious abdominal pain used to go straight into the operating room, where surgeons opened them up to find appendicitis — or rule it out. Dr. Angela Mills of the University of Pennsylvania said CT scans have reduced unnecessary surgeries, "but I think the pendulum has gone to the other side." The trade-off is fewer surgeries and hospitalizations versus a test that costs several hundred dollars but which involves lots of radiation.

Read more: ER doctors: Lawsuit fears lead to overtesting

Moods of Doctors Affect the Quality of Care

Hey! Today information bombarded my mind about doctors. This time it’s about the moods of these people in uniforms and scrubs  and its effect to their patients. Check out this study done about them:

 

The findings of the study "Communicating with Patients, Prescribing Medications and Referring to Tests and Specialists: Associations with Physician Burnout and Moods" were recently presented at the 14th International Conference of the Israel National Institute for Health Policy by Prof. Talma Kushnir, Department of the Sociology of Health, BGU Faculty of Health Sciences. The result is that the quality of care a physician provided on any given day was significantly influenced by his or her mood at the time she/he saw the patient.

 

Prof. Kushnir surveyed 188 primary physicians in Israel to determine whether doctors changed their professional behavior on good mood days, as well as days when they felt stressed, tired or anxious. Physicians' burnout levels were also assessed. The study asked doctors to rank how their mood affected the extent they talked to patients, prescribed medications, sent them to lab or diagnostic tests and referred patients to a specialist.

 

Her findings show that a good or bad mood affected all five physician behaviors. On days the doctors felt positive moods, they spoke more to patients, wrote fewer prescriptions, ordered fewer tests and issued fewer referrals. However, when doctors were in a bad mood, they did the opposite. Additionally, if the physicians' burnout level was higher, their moods more strongly impacted their behaviors.

 

"The finding that on bad mood days physicians tend to talk less, and may needlessly prescribe and refer more than on good mood days, implies that negative moods may be detrimental to quality and costly to healthcare systems," says Prof. Kushnir. Conversely, positive moods that have the opposite effects may help contain costs.

 

Well? So does this mean that the patients’ health will be jeopardized just because of the different moods of doctors? Whew! This is a hard question indeed. We all know that patients need the help of doctors when it comes to their health though there are a lot of social media sites that can aid the patients. However doctors are not that perfect to not feel depression or suffer stress, in fact there are recent surveys that can tell us that doctors indeed suffer depression and even to the point that some of them become addicted to drugs.

 

Anyway I do believe that the roots of these mood swings of doctors are their depression and stress, thus there is a need to check those things that can affect and alleviate their depression. Maybe this is personal and sometimes due to the working environment. A healthy personality is indeed a need in order to cope with depression and men and women wearing scrub tops and any kinds of medical scrubs must possess this kind of personality.

Addict Doctors?!

(NaturalNews) Doctors suffer in secret from a wide range of physical and mental health problems including addiction, according to the findings of a new health program in the United Kingdom.

The Practitioner Health Program (PHP) was set up in response to concerns that health professionals were self-medicating or avoiding treatment for serious health problems, out of fear of being stigmatized if they visited a colleague for help. The program provides confidential health services, and so far has been judged a success.

"From the number of patients accessing PHP during its first year, it's clear there is a need for this highly specialized service," said England's chief medical officer, Sir Liam Donaldson.

"This has been a real eye-opener," said PHP medical director Clare Gerada. "I thought at first we'd see a bit of stress and burn-out. But it soon became apparent how troubled some of these doctors and dentists were. I've been surprised at the degree and extent of substance misuse that we've seen."

Of 184 patients treated in the program's first year, 36 percent suffered from some form of addiction.

"We are seeing every drug under the sun," Gerada said. "Ketamine, methadrone, amphetamines, heroin, every drug you have ever heard of is coming through the door."

More than 80 percent of those treated for addiction by the PHP have recovered, in contrast with the 10 percent success rate in the general population.

Sixty-two percent of PHP patients treated suffered from mental health problems, including six previously undiagnosed cases of psychosis.

Two patients were reported to the General Medical Council out of fear that they might harm patients, and six others were encouraged to self-report. Five doctors temporarily ceased practicing upon recommendation from the PHP.

"They're not the easiest patients in the world -- and behind them are patients who could potentially be harmed," Gerada said.

The types of professionals most commonly seeking treatment were psychiatrists, pediatricians and anesthetists.

 

This is very perplexing news.  Doctors above all are not just there to wear lab coats or hospital uniforms. Doctor as a profession is a hard one. Being with sick people every day, doctors need to be healthy in order to provide health to their patients. As I’ve read this news I thought to myself that indeed people in scrub jackets are prone to depression and stress because we are dealing with people here and not just ordinary people but sick one. But this is not an excuse for a doctor to resort on drugs and be addicted to it.

Another thing is that the professions that are specified are dealing with very vulnerable patients. Just for instance the anesthetists who need to be alert always because one wrong dosage and syringe is fatal indeed, the pediatricians can sabotage the health of those fragile babies just because they are high on drugs, and the psychiatrists that we thought can handle stress and depressions above the varieties of doctors are also dependent on drugs. Whew! This is very frightening.

Doctors wake up. People need you so don’t let stress run you down and defeat you!

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