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Your doctor is not the enemy

Medicine was once seen as a noble profession. The healing touch that banished all ailments, comforted those in pain and alleviated suffering. This image is slowly eroding. The doctors have now become the enemy. It may sound dramatic but the reality is such that we are hounded, persecuted and second-guessed for most of our professional lives that we lose focus on why we joined this profession the first place. I wrote this so the doctors can be heard and for you to know that we are not your enemy.

The Internet is not a recognized medical school
I have told my patients this countless times in the humblest of manner, sound and sensible medical advice comes from years of training and learning medicine and not from reading countless articles from the Internet.
The doctors cannot be overruled by your relative who feels insulin makes your diabetes worse because of an article he read on a celebrity wellness blog.

We should not dragged to refute the logic of your village elders who feel cessation of smoking brings more harm to your body and that in order to ’remain healthy’ you need to continue smoking as your lungs will repair and replace the unhealthy cells.

We have spent millions to show you that vaccination is safe yet you don’t trust us.

The doctors don’t hurt you on purpose
I was nauseated after reading an article recently regarding a teenager’s excruciating and horrifying experience while being treated for dengue fever in a hospital. The mother claimed that he was stabbed and prodded with needles while he was still awake and that his cries of pain brought tears to her eyes. It had all the makings of a sensational piece of news. Imagine having to send all patients to the operating theatre for blood taking under general anaesthesia!

Another mother claimed radiation from a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan on her child left him permanently disabled from the radiation although no one bothered to correct her that there was absolutely no risk of radiation and that her child had a genetic condition.

But the one that takes the cake would have to be the accusation of sexual misconduct against a young doctor for holding a male patient’s genitals while inserting a urinary catheter. The author had the audacity to publish the doctor’s name while making him look like a sex predator. I have just one question… “Where is he supposed to hold while inserting a urinary catheter? The belly button?”

The doctors don’t make money from your illness
We don’t pray for you to fall sick. And we are there for you when you do. You must have the mental finesse and the discerning capacity to know the difference. Although doctors in private practice make decent money, the same cannot be said of doctors working in government or charity hospitals.

Most doctors resist the temptation of private practice due to their sheer willpower to serve the needy when they can easily chart a better life for themselves.

We are not paid extra for every patient we admit or manage. The drug companies don’t give us a percentage of their profit every time we prescribe their medication. We earn a fixed income and we have learnt to live with it.

If we have to keep you in the ward or prescribe a different antibiotic for your chest infection it isn’t because we mean harm or we are trying to profit from your illness. It is simply because we are doing our job. To care for you. And please don’t make it impossible for us to do just that.

The doctors are human and they can make mistakes
I have no excuse for doctors who are repeatedly incompetent and pose a danger to their patients. They besmirch the name of all doctors and should be dealt with severely.

But spare a thought for those who make a mistake without meaning to. They have worked admirably for years in a thankless environment without expecting much and suddenly a solitary mistake and its reverberating effects define who they are. They will be publicly humiliated in a courtroom. People will snigger and talk behind their backs. Friends and colleagues will desert them. They will be branded as failures and continue to live on with this reality while saving countless other lives.

As much as it pains you please find it in your heart to forgive them especially if you know deep within you that it was a genuine mistake. It is too much to ask at times.

I remember a beautiful quote by Abraham Verghese on doctors;

” We come unbidden into this life, and if we are lucky we find a purpose beyond starvation, misery, and early death which, lest we forget, is the common lot. I grew up and I found my purpose and it was to become a physician. My intent wasn’t to save the world as much as to heal myself. Few doctors will admit this, certainly not young ones, but subconsciously, in entering the profession, we must believe that ministering to others will heal our woundedness. And it can. but it can also deepen the wound.”

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A note to Brendan Rodgers: From a Liverpool fan

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Dear Brendan Rodgers,

Chin up. This is not the end. I have followed and analyzed most of Liverpool’s matches this season and I have found a constant in their success. You.

Many would blame our captain for the mistake that cost us the game against Chelsea but if I am much mistaken, you blame yourself. Don’t. You cast aside pragmatism and believed in your philosophy and your players. You are a rare breed. A draw is not a win. Don’t let anyone tell you any differently.

The mark of a champion is to rise from the ashes of defeat. You of all people would have learned the most from this game. You would have seen beyond the tactical discipline of a team structured to frustrate yours, that if this happens again, you will be prepared. And you will be ready.

Take heart from watching the great managers of past, who stood helplessly by, while victory was stolen from their grasp at the very last second. They came back. They fought and they won. So will you. And that is the true measure of greatness if it can be measured at all. Perseverance.

Don’t descend to the lower depths of morality. As you have been gracious in winning, be magnanimous in defeat. To those who stand at the opposite end of the moral spectrum nothing bothers them more. This is the true mind game. Believe me.

As you have not allowed your relative success to breed in your head, don’t allow the imposter called defeat to lay shackles in your mind. Rebuild the ramparts around your psyche. Reforge your weapons. And then come out blazing. We are with you. And I promise you this, you will never walk alone.

Yours truly,
A liverpool fan

This is harder than E=mc2

    This post is dedicated to Netto and Teshini. Reading some of your posts daily on my wall made me write this. I hope it helps the two of you during this period because it has certainly helped me believe. You have found what most of us are still seeking. Cheers…

 

We set boundaries in life. But love pervades all boundaries. Its simple without being simplistic. It always starts the same way. An unexpected beckoning of the heart.

Falling in love is euphoric I suppose. I would not know. I have never fallen in or out of it. Yet. But will staying in love dull your senses after ‘prolonged exposure’?

I suppose true love defines eternity. I have seen it in others. I have seen its true form. It gives them eyes to see past any imperfections and to cherish every breath. Its replenishes the soul and makes every dream worth leaving. It helps the heart forgive and the mind to forget without being forgetful. It overcomes all hurdles and leaps any faith. They remain devoted without bitterness, manipulation and undesired ego. It makes us embrace the one thing that makes us complete. Humanity.

True lovers never part. They liberate others with hope. Hope that love exists and that it makes perfect sense. It allows others to love and they in turn liberate others.

I will continue to believe then. After all its never audacious to be hopeful….