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The Missing Ingredient In Accountable Care

January 28, 2011 4:29 am | by Pauline W. Chen, MD | Comments

This past week while spending time with nonmedical friends, I found myself referring to what health care experts have been touting as the system’s best hope for the future. My friends, eager to learn more and always game for any clarification of the health care system, leaned in to hear me expound on accountable care organizations, or A.

Preventing Infection With Technology

January 28, 2011 4:28 am | by Interview by Amanda Hankel, editor | Comments

With the increasing concern about healthcare-associated infections (HAI), health care facilities are looking to new technology to help them prevent infection. Here, Surgical Products talks with Valerie Martinez, RN, Head of Infection Control for Palomar Pomerado Health System (PPH) as its facilities begin using the Xenex Disinfection System , a pulsed xenon UV room disinfection technology that has been proven effective in deactivating and removing infection-causing bacteria, viruses, mold, fungus and spores from both surfaces and the air.

What She Taught Me

January 26, 2011 4:42 am | Comments

Truth, and goodness, and beauty are but different faces of the same all. -Ralph Waldo Emerson    A smile filled her face eternally and she seemed incapable of ever being self-conscious. Despite that, the first time she arrived at my office for an appointment, my eyes were drawn — not to her smile or the twinkle in her eye, nor to the stark whiteness of her upper denture — but to the surgical scars crisscrossing her lower face and cheek.


Reducing The Risk For Surgical Site Infections

January 26, 2011 4:38 am | Comments

A Q&A with John S. Foor, MD, a vascular surgeon and infection prevention specialist at Mount Carmel Vascular and Vascular surgeons of Ohio, Mount Carmel Medical Center in Columbus, Ohio. January 26, 2011 The government has cut reimbursement for treating certain healthcare-associated infections and has issued an action plan to prevent infections, including vascular catheter-associated bloodstream infections (BSIs) and surgical site infections (SSIs) following coronary artery bypass graft.

Engineer Designs Device To Heal His Own Heart

January 25, 2011 4:46 am | Comments

Professors at the University College London (UCL) have helped an engineer develop and evaluate a device to repair a defect in his own heart. The extraordinary collaboration has proved so successful that a further 19 people have undergone the same pioneering operation. Engineer Tal Golesworthy was suffering from a defect in his aorta — the main artery for carrying oxygenated blood — that left it in danger of splitting.

As Doctors Age, Worries About Their Ability Grow

January 25, 2011 4:38 am | by Laurie Tarkan | Comments

As Doctors Age, Worries About Their Ability Grow About eight years ago, at the age of 78, a vascular surgeon in California operated on a woman who then developed a pulmonary embolism. The surgeon did not respond to urgent calls from the nurses, and the woman died. Even after the hospital reported the doctor to the Medical Board of California, he continued to perform operations for four years until the board finally referred him for a competency assessment at the University of California, San Diego .

Medical Center Saves $2.4 Million, Improves Patient Flow

January 24, 2011 6:35 am | Comments

Background: Valley Medical Center Valley Medical Center (VMC), Washington State’s first public district hospital, is the largest nonprofit healthcare provider between Seattle and Tacoma, serving over 400,000 residents as a regional center op erating a network of 12 community clinics throughout King County.


Can A Doctor And A Nurse Be Friends In The OR?

January 24, 2011 6:32 am | by Anesthesioboist T., MD | Comments

One of my best friends in med school was an O.B. nurse. Though she has moved almost all the way across the country and I haven’t seen her since I was in school, we’re still in touch and expect to be seeing each other at last in a couple of months. By some coincidence one of my best friends now is also an O.


Doctors Aren’t Superhuman

January 19, 2011 5:53 am | by Doctor Grumpy, MD | Comments

I mentioned having a migraine this past weekend, and was somewhat surprised by how many people commented and wrote to me, surprised that a doctor, let alone a neurlogist, would actually get migraines. What’s up with that? I know this may be hard to believe, but we get health problems too.

Conquering Organ Rejection

January 18, 2011 5:30 am | Comments

Breakthrough transplant procedure avoids lifelong dependence on drugs January 18, 2011 Dr. David Sachs and Dr. Megan Sykes When Massachusetts General Hospital gave Jennifer Searl the world’s first non-HLA-matched combined kidney and bone marrow transplant in 2002, it was more than just a scientific breakthrough.



January 18, 2011 4:31 am | by Bruce Campbell, MD | Comments

"If I’d known I was going to live this long, I would have taken better care of myself." -Eubie Blake     He leaned forward, energetically listening to my conversation with his daughter. There was more than one cancer treatment option. We reviewed everything and she asked what he could expect with either a major surgery or seven weeks of daily radiation treatments.

Hospital By Day … Gotham City By Night

January 17, 2011 5:35 am | by Zoe Kiren Deol, MD, FACS | Comments

Every hospital I have ever worked in seems to have a case of split personality. During the day, a hospital seems to take on the persona of a doting mother, full of rules and regulations created for your own personal safety: “Don’t run with scissors” (dispose of sharps correctly); “Eat your vegetables” (low fat, low sodium diabetic diet); “It’s past your bedtime” (visiting hours are now over).

A Hospital Program To End Violence

January 14, 2011 4:43 am | by Pauline W. Chen, MD | Comments

At the end of every year, in what was one of our grimmest rituals during training, the other young doctors and I would huddle over the local newspaper and read through the obituary year-in-review section. We would pick out the names and faces we recognized, recall their stories and marvel over the lives they led outside of the hospital.

Intubating The Combative Patient

January 12, 2011 5:40 am | by Ralph Gordon, MD | Comments

How many times have I been asked by the trauma surgeons to see a trauma patient for respiratory failure? The reason for intubation and ventilatory support – being combative and non-cooperative.

The Doctor vs. The Computer

January 11, 2011 6:04 am | by Danielle, Ofri, MD | Comments

Electronic medical records promise efficiency, safety and productivity in the switch from paper to computer. But there are glitches, as a patient of mine recently brought to light. My patient needs prostate surgery. It is my job, as his internist, to estimate the risks this surgery poses, decide whether he can proceed with the surgery and make recommendations for his medical management before and after the operation.


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