Ruminations by a non-academic general surgeon from the heart of the rust belt.
Hi Jeff,Good post. I am seeing this happening right now with a co-worker's father who has recurrent stomach cancer. They had been going to try chemo but found he's got hep C. Somewhere along the line they put some kind of stent in for his liver and/or removed gallbladder but it's not improved the situation enough to try chemo. The guy has lost tons of weight and continues to decline but they're going to put him through either a bronchoscopy or lung biopsy tomorrow to check lung mestasis. No one has even bothered to discuss or try to refer this man for hospice yet either. I've urged his daughter to try to discuss this with his doc. I don't know all the details and it's hard because the family is Bulgarian but they are treating at the local big wig midwest academic center and I can't believe my ears when they tell me this story.
Hey Buckeye,Can I do it too? U.S. News and World Report Hospitals of the Future ;)Joe
Congratulations and excellent contribution, Buckeye!(What shameless? It's well-deserved!)
Congrats, Jeff :)"There isn't always a solution to a patient's sufferings, and we need to stop interpreting this unfortunate reality as a failure."You make a very valid point!
Two things:First (regarding the post itself): I disagree with the statement, "Nothing more can be done [for a patient]." Even when the procedures of the surgeons and the interventionalists are no longer appropriate, there are always ways to alleviate suffering. The professional failure is the fundamentally egocentric view that because *you* can do nothing more for a patient, "nothing more" can be done.Second: I'm in Reader's Digest too (at least on the website)!
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