essay

Opioid users are treated like AIDS patients were in the 80s

Stigma towards health conditions interferes with access to compassionate care. Both social stigma from friends and family and medical stigma from professionals are issues. Perhaps the worst recent example of medical stigma is how people with HIV/AIDS were treated in the 1980s. They were isolated physically and spiritually. While in medical school a professor related …

Opioid users are treated like AIDS patients were in the 80s Read More »

First stab: the first time I saw a patient death

I spent the summer between the first and second years of medical school in the emergency department at Cincinnati’s major trauma hospital. More specifically, I spent summer nights there, studying the effects of interpersonal violence. Cincinnati is both a friendly city and a violent city. People say “Hello” when you pass in a corridor. At …

First stab: the first time I saw a patient death Read More »

Being mindful for the zebras

  In the book Zen Mind, Beginner’s Mind, Shunryu Suzuki, says “In the beginner’s mind there are many possibilities, but in the expert’s there are few.” After an experience with a rare neurological illness, I  found that cultivating a beginner’s mind opens doors and improves clinical diagnosis. Medical training has phases, and clinicians in different …

Being mindful for the zebras Read More »

A Different Kind of Case Study – With the Doctor as the Patient

A physician experiences the pain crisis in America As a physician I’ve taken numerous CME modules about pain and the opioid crisis. I’ve even had training in suboxone prescribing and obtained my DEA X number. But it was a recent journey on the other side of the exam table that opened my eyes to what …

A Different Kind of Case Study – With the Doctor as the Patient Read More »