The High Stakes How-To of HIV Diagnoses & Other Bombs

morse-code

 

Have heard the story of the S-4 submarine? Pretend you’re–not a medical student this time–but a diver. The year is 1927. One frosty December day, your Massachusetts Coast Guard crashes and sinks the USS S-4. Heroically, you rescue many survivors yet six remain. Any attempt to open the hull simply allows more water stealing away precious oxygen. During their final hours, you place your ear to the hull and pick up faint Morse code–is there any hope?

This question adds a layer of complexity to the already daunting task of delivering difficult diagnoses Continue reading

Cupcakes and Coke and Totaled Cars

Cupcake

If your car ever gets squished to smithereens, remember to tell your friends about it.

Because if we find out via rumors of some text from a classmate with this obscure picture of you standing beside your hunk of metal, we’re comin’ after you.

Doesn’t matter if your precious baby car was totaled while you escaped with a few abrasions and edema, we’re comin’ after you.
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Diarrhea and Mortality

Broken eggSo we’re currently studying all the ways one might die by dysentery. There’s the I-fed-my-cow-corn-and-wreaked-havoc-on-its-intestinal-flora-allowing-harmful-bacteria-to-enter-our-food-supply method. Thanks, E. coli. And there’s the I-work-in-a-nursery-with-sick-children-all-day possibility. Thanks again, E. coli. Then comes the really bad I-didn’t-completely-incinerate-my-chicken-patty way. Enter, salmonella enterica. We’re not just talking about extra trips to the bathroom or debilitating dehydration, but raging fevers and bacteria in the blood with a chance of endocarditis and cholecystitis and lots of other organ-specific-itises.
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Yesteryears of Medicine

Hi. My name’s HD and I’m here to take you back… At least that’s my spiel as a part-time transporter / surgical orderly. But I’d rather transport you to the 1960’s. 1963 to be exact. That was the year the G. family immigrated from the Philippines so Lolo could meet the Smith brothers. They would hire my great-grandfather at the same exact hospital that now employs me!
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