Chat with us, powered by LiveChat

Medical Justice

Making healthcare safe for doctors


Blog

When a Doctor Becomes a Patient

08/05/16 5:00 PM

Hundreds of articles have been published on the theme of a doctor becoming a patient.  I’d like to add one more to the literature.  But only to express my gratitude.

Over the years, I’ve cataloged many of the headaches faced by professionals in health care.  This includes the countless challenges doctors face each and every day in performing their job.  Such challenges can be demoralizing.  And it often leads to advice senior doctors give to college students to consider other professions.

Anyone who knows me, knows that I’m an avid cyclist.  I love cycling.  I love the people I ride with.  Many of these are people I would never recognize on the street without a bike jersey or helmet on.  Still, we have a shared passion.  As one sports writer once penned, cyclists fetishize agony.  My wife doesn’t understand it.  But she knows it’s part of who I am.

On July 23, the lead rider in our group dodged a gigantic pothole.  We were 9 miles shy of finishing an 80 mile ride.  The rider behind the leader hit the pothole and went down.  Down came the dominoes.  I was one of those dominoes.  My bike was the least damaged of the group’s.  But my body was the most damaged.

Initially I struggle to breathe.  I knew I had at least one rib fracture.  But I could not tell whether I had a pneumothorax.  If so, the clock was ticking to get quick treatment.  I also had a swollen elbow and swollen shoulder.  I was alert and oriented.  One of the riders quickly called his wife and she was at the scene within minutes.  She dropped me off at the emergency room.  I called my wife in the interim.  She met me at the emergency room.  My breathing eased.

The damage: five rib fractures, left clavicle fracture, left comminuted elbow fracture.  I probably also had some pulmonary contusions as my oxygen saturation was approximately 90%.  Still, I felt fortunate.  No head injury, your spine injury, no visceral injuries.

My doctor friends were wonderful.  The surgeons, the nurses, the techs, and everyone I interacted with at the hospital, were superstars in my book.  They took care of me.  They took care of my family.  I have nothing but gratitude. Medicine is indeed a great profession. A thousand thanks for ALL you do each and every day.

Posted by Medical Justice | in Blog | 7 Comments »
newest oldest
Notify of
Marguerite BarnettMD
Guest
Marguerite BarnettMD

Glad you survived that! Owie!

Jay Shorr
Guest

From one colleague to another, rest up because there are still a lot of people who need you, and that starts at home.

Looking forward to seeing you soon.

Jay

Barry
Guest
Barry

I understand how fortunate we are to be taken care of my colleagues when things happen. On Mother’s Day two years ago I went into septic shock from a belly mass. For three weeks I was in an induced coma to allow my body to recover. If it was not for two surgeon friends who operated a two in the morning, I would not be here. Within twenty minutes of my getting to the hospital I was unconscious in the ER from sepsis. I remember nothing until extubated. I give great thanks to everyone who participated in my care.

Eric Joseph
Guest
Eric Joseph

Holy cow. With so much trauma, you must have been flying. Glad to hear you’re in a good space. And thank you for another excuse not to go near the Peloton. Godspeed.

Michael M. Rosenblatt, DPM
Guest
Michael M. Rosenblatt, DPM

While the rest of the World is enmeshed in sybaritic pleasures and finding ways to expand their wealth without working, physicians and surgeons donated their entire early life to enormous financial expense, study of highly complex material and in some cases verbal abuse by professors. Oh yes, you also gave up most of your social life too during those highly challenging preparation years. But Congress and our political leaders treat you like “greedy children”criminalizing and “felonizing” you, threatening you with prison sentences for minor charting transgressions. You are highly over-regulated and can be investigated (and even imprisoned) for at least… Read more »

Richard Willner
Guest

When a Physician submits an insurance claim form to Medicare, he can potentially be crossways with no less than 19 Federal laws. The False Claims Act, both federal and state, are the work horses, but, there are plenty more laws to break. When you sit down and study any modern law, such as the National Practitioner Data Bank, I wonder if the regulators, who are about 28 years old, even wonder if they will ever get older and need the surgeons and physicians to put themselves or their loved ones back together again. As I have said thousands of times,… Read more »