Dogs

What do patients want from their doctor? We know they want us to have adequate knowledge. But most of us do. They want to know we care. So we listen and try to be understanding. Over the past few years I have been trying to improve the overall patient interaction.

Medical school is filled with lectures. Yes there is some small part of the curriculum focused on learning to interact with patients. There was a class for a few hours every other week called Physician and Patient. But that is not necessary to graduate. The main thing that lead to my M.D. was answering multiple choice questions.

But I have learned the key. I know what connects with patients the most. It is a simple thing that I put in my medical record notes. The patient’s dogs name. You may not remember the date of their colonoscopy or when they have a right total knee replacement. But if when they walk in you ask them how Sadie their bijon is they will love you forever. You are behind an hour just ask them if they have been taking Max the family pit bull for walks in the neighborhood. Hopefully if it is a pit bull it is not your neighborhood as well. Forget everything else but find a spot to list the name of the family dog. It works every time.

Unless they have cats. Then I have no advice. And the answer is 3. More than three cats officially makes you a cat lady. Even if you are a man.

Listen to your patients. They love their dogs. Often more than they love their family.

The Doc is In

The Chreasters

We spend a lot of time in the Church celebrating Christmas and Easter. Why not, it’s like Christianity’s Super Bowl twice a year. Lots of people only come in those days, the Chreasters or Cafeteria Christians. You know how the gym is at New Years? All these people you have never seen before sweating all over your equipment, there is no where to park and forget showing up late. Same thing happens at Church, except for more “Christiany” and I mean you can get really upset. It is not some guy working off his Dad Bod, it’s someone else getting to hear the good news about a personal relationship with Jesus. So I guess we should be a little more forgiving, and say some extra prayers that whatever they are looking for they mind find it on that day. As long as they do not take my seat.
The Deacon Speaks

Running

Running is good for you. Most of the time. It is finally warm out again in the northeast. It is time to get out there and run. It is one of the quickest way to exercise. I work long hours and have 2 children so I do not have much time to exercise. So I run. Pollen has been quite high. Today my nose was running faster than my legs. My wife likes her eggs runny. I need Flonase for my runny nose. At least I do not have runny bowels. Run for your lives.
The Doc is In

Dangers of Easter

When patients come in with foot swelling. And they have never had it before I feel like I get to be the one playing a game. I blurt out foods. Like the Deacon does with answers to questions when we play a game.
Did you have Chinese? That will always do it. Or was it Dollar Dog night? If you took down over 7 one dollar dogs your ankles may swell a little. If it looks like your socks used to fit and that now your feet are wearing a size Schmedium type sock then you may have overdone it with the salt. This may be a generational thing. My father in law starts to put salt on things before he has even tasted his food. And he is still alive. We love you Pa-Pa.
But on this upcoming Monday after Easter dinner do not call me. It was the Ham. How much did you eat? It is the reason you have swollen legs. Put them up and drink some water. I blame Jesus and the Ham. Do not get me started on Peeps.
Happy Easter
The Doc is In

Diarrhea

Diarrhea never comes at the right time. You have never planned for diarrhea. No one wants to have diarrhea unless they are trying to hide from their children. It is one of those things that does not discriminate. It happens to all of us. Most diarrhea is due to viruses. The most common are called rotavirus and norovirus. If you get watery stools and diarrhea has arrived there are some things that you can do. Take 2 immodium and do what you can to stay hydrated. I recommend drinking water or an electrolyte solution. Popsicles for the kids. But watch out for red flags. These are the reasons to contact your physician right away. Blood in your stool or the inability to stay hydrated or diarrhea lasting longer than 48 hours or recent antibiotic use. Say yes to immodium and no to diarrhea.
The Doc is In

Work Wife

I have sad news. My work wife of 5 years has decided to leave me. For what she thinks will be greener pastures. This leads me to many questions – Why would she leave? What could I have done different? Is it wrong to start looking for a new work wife before my current one has officially left? I caught myself coveting my partner’s work wife. I almost feel bad that I have a new one in my sights while my old one is still here. Deacon – Would you call this a sin? It is like internet dating. She left me yet I feel like I am the one cheating. I have been looking at resumes. Swiping left on some and right on others. After finding out my work wife was leaving it made me have an intense conversation with my actual wife where I explained to her that I need her. I cannot lose another wife. Especially a real one. Especially since she has more blogs to write.
The Doc is In

Multitasking

Apparently when you have a podcast you’re always looking for topics and content. Sometimes the strangest, and seemingly benign things serve as inspiration – hunger pangs, T-shirt sizes, PA winters and even potty training. Before you know it, 2 seasons of diverse subject matters have been discussed. Add to that, however – a website and blog and it’s suddenly not as simple to continue to turn out such inventive content quickly. So what is one to do when the inspiration train is running out of gas you ask? Simple. As any smart married man knows, just ask your wife. Why not? Women are among the best multitaskers I know and those who are mothers – forget about it. Moms can endlessly juggle with the best of them while also dodging random hurdles and adjusting the course as necessary. Take, for example yours truly. Add to my full-time career – laundry, meal prep, doctors appointment, groceries and for literal shits and giggles – a 7 year old with a stomach bug – and that was my day today. So being asked to write a post? Sure, why not? I’ve never been one to shy away from homework and hate to disappoint. So here you have it- content. Not sure if this will incite medical conversation or a more religious point of view but my assignment is complete. So check that one off the list, dinner is almost ready.
Wifey AKA Doc’s Better Half

Lent

Lent has always been used as a time to prepare for Easter. Most religions agree it starts with Ash Wednesday and is accompanied with some degree of fasting expression of simplicity and self-control. Many people in the Northeast use it as a time to give up indulgences like sweets, pretzels or alcohol. This year the Deacon gave up yelling at bad drivers … except I would normally forget a couple of times per day that I had given it penance and start all over again. It only takes 5 minutes on one of these pot-hole ridden over crowded highways around Philadelphia for me to be so thankful for Jesus and the fact that all my cursing and middle fingers are absolved through his death and subsequent resurrection. I’ve still got a couple of weeks left and I am praying everyday for the patience and self-control to be true to my Lenten commitment. He is risen indeed … Holla.
The Deacon Speaks

Hands

Mine are cold. Yet my job consists of the laying on of hands daily. Freezing hands feeling your thyroid and palpating your abdomen. I may be checking your pulse. I may be feeling for enlarged lymph nodes. I try to warm them daily but I continually fail. The Deacon uses his hands for prayer. Religion also discusses the laying on of hands. But do not be scared my cold hands will not hurt you. Embrace them. And do not worry when I give the Deacon a full body exam I put some gloves on.
The Doc is In

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