A Visit With My Oncologist

After a while my oncologist stepped out into the waiting area and guided me to the hall by her office. “The cells are low,” she said. “We’ll have to wait another week, that’s all.”

I knew she was right. But a week seemed like a lifetime to me then….

Posted in Breast Cancer, cancer survival, cancer treatment, Life as a Patient, Women's HealthTagged , , , , , , , , 2 Comments on A Visit With My Oncologist

How to Avoid Death in the ICU

It was sometime in April, 1988. I was putting a line in an old man with end-stage kidney disease, cancer (maybe), heart failure, bacteria in his blood and no consciousness. Prince was on the radio, loud, by his bedside. If you could call it that – the uncomfortable, curtained compartment didn’t seem like a good place for resting.

Posted in cancer treatment, Communication, Empowered Patient, Essential Lessons, health care costs, Life as a Doctor, Medical Ethics, Palliative Care, Patient Autonomy, Patient-Doctor RelationshipTagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , 4 Comments on How to Avoid Death in the ICU

Why Give Blood?

Giving blood is something that’s close to my heart. When I was 14 years old, I received seven units of packed red blood cells from strangers…

Today, thousands will donate blood to honor the birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr… The holiday presents, also, a special opportunity to gather much-needed registrants for the National Marrow Donor Registry…

Posted in Hematology (blood), Life, Life as a Patient, Medical Education, Medical History, Public HealthTagged , , , , , , , 1 Comment on Why Give Blood?

Moms Tweet About Blood and Cancer

This afternoon I found a Tweet from a colleague, a journalist who happens to be a mom in my community:

Tweet from SuSaw:
“RT @JenSinger: Hey, baby. What’s your blood type? Nothing against the Big Pink Machine… http://ow.ly/URkg

As a trained hematologist (blood doc), oncologist and breast cancer survivor, I couldn’t resist checking this out. Here’s what I discovered…

Posted in Communication, Future of Medicine, Health IT, Hematology (blood), Social Media, Women's HealthTagged , , , , , , , , , , 1 Comment on Moms Tweet About Blood and Cancer

Skyping Medicine

Yesterday, Dr. Pauline Chen reported in the New York Times on virtual visits, a little-used approach for providing care to patients hundreds or thousands of miles apart from their physicians.

Telemedicine depends on satellite technology and data transfer. It’s a theoretical and possibly real health benefit of the World Wide Web, that giant, not-new-anymore health resource that’s transforming medicine in more ways than we know.

Posted in Communication, Diagnosis, Future of Medicine, Health IT, Patient-Doctor RelationshipTagged , , , , , , , , , 1 Comment on Skyping Medicine

Looking Ahead: 7 Cancer Topics for the Future

Here’s my short list, culled from newsworthy developments that might improve health, reduce costs of care and better patients’ lives between now and 2020, starting this year: 1. “Real” Alternative Medicine. By this I don’t mean infinitely-diluted homeopathic solutions sold in fancy bottles at high prices, but real remedies extracted from nature and sometimes ancient […]

Posted in Future of Medicine, Health IT, Oncology (cancer), Science, Selected TopicsTagged , , , , , , , , , , , , Leave a Comment on Looking Ahead: 7 Cancer Topics for the Future
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