Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Day 202 - Playground

Thought of the day: I just finished reading a booked titled "How Doctors Think" by Jerome Groopman.  It was highly recommended to me recently by his niece.  I couldn't recall how or when I met her but the book was definitely worth the recommendations.  Dr. Groopman explored the unusual subject of how a doctor's thinking can adversely affect the diagnosis of a patient.  With 15% of the medical diagnosis being inaccurate, this subject is definitely an important one.  Doctors are only humans and their thought process can often be influenced by the past experiences, the emotional state, the affinity with a particular patient, the fear of litigation, the subtle and not-so-subtle financial incentives, and the pressure to think and act quickly under a time constraint often imposed by the insurance companies.  No matter how skillful or experienced they are, they can make mistakes in their thought process and make a wrong diagnosis which may severely affect the outcome of a patient.  I really admire the honesty and courage of Dr. Groopman for exploring this thorny subject, especially considering that he is a physician himself, as I am sure few physicians would admit or even realize that he is fallible due to his own weaknesses.  Many of the issues he raised in the book don't really have good solutions.  However, he did take away some of the mystique surrounding physicians, and he made a few suggestions for the patients to take more control of their own care and to steer the physicians away from some of the pitfalls in the thought process by asking pointed questions.  The book opened my eyes by offering a physician's angle of view on medical diagnosis and treatment, but hopefully I will not have to make use of any of his suggestions any time soon.

Photo of the day:

My girls playing in a Lafayette playground after Jasmine's music lesson.  I am so glad that they are healthy and capable of enjoying life in its full glamor.

No comments:

Post a Comment