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Latest Posts

New Books About Combat Medicine And Battle-Zone Care

Paradise GeneralWhen Americans think about wartime medicine, “MASH” reruns and the comic antics of Hot Lips Houlihan and Hawkeye Pierce are likely to come to mind. A decidedly more authentic view can be found in “Paradise General” and “The Nightingale of Mosul,” books by a real-life Army surgeon, Dr. Dave Hnida, and an Army nurse, Col. Susan Luz. Both authors served in Iraq during some of the bloodiest days of the war in 2006 and 2007.

At an age when people often retire from the military, 48-year-old Dr. Hnida, a family physician in Littleton, Colo., volunteered for service, answering the Army’s call for doctors. Col. Luz was a 56-year-old Army reservist—her previous tours had included delivering babies for military families stationed in Germany and bringing humanitarian aid to South America—when she was deployed to active duty in the bloody urban Nightingale of Mosulbattleground of Mosul.

via Book Review: Paradise General; The Nightingale of Mosul –

So, my summer book list is set.

*This blog post was originally published at GruntDoc*

A Real “American Idol”

In honor of Memorial Day, from the editorial cartoons of Joe Heller:

Real American Idol

Active Kids, Outdoor Play, And Little Mishaps

Outdoor play“Play, Incorporating Animistic and Magical Thinking Is Important Because It: Fosters the healthy, creative and emotional growth of a child; Forms the best foundation for later intellectual growth. Provides a way in which children get to know the world and creates possibilities for different ways of responding to it. Fosters empathy and wonder.”  – Rachel Carson, “A Sense of Wonder

Remember “Red Light, Green Light,” “One-Two-Three,” “Tag, You’re It,” “Mother, May I?” or “Kickball?” These are just some of the good old-fashioned outdoor games kids used to play, and they are making a comeback. There’s nothing better than the sound of kids playing outdoors. Even kids playing outside making up their own games can bring them a lot joy and can be great exercise. With all the technology that surrounds us today, it’s great to see kids playing in the park and in their backyards.

It’s no secret that outdoor play and fresh air are great for kids’ overall physical and emotional well-being. In fact, a study in the journal Pediatrics concludes that children ages 8 and 9 who had more than 15 minutes of recess had better classroom behavior. This study suggests that school children in this age group should be provided with daily recess. Read more »

*This blog post was originally published at Health in 30*

Teaching ‘Til The Very End: Carol Rivers, M.D.

Carol Rivers, MD

To those who haven’t heard, an icon of emergency medicine has passed away.

Carol Rivers, M.D. died last week following a cardiac procedure. Carol was an outstanding clinician and educator, and one of the founders of modern emergency medicine as we’re fortunate to know it today.

Carol was perhaps best known for her board preparation guides, which helped many a terrified physician to navigate his or her emergency medicine board exams. I know her expertise helped me when I took my first American Board of Emergency Medicine (ABEM) exam. Read more »

*This blog post was originally published at*

For High School Graduates: Education First, Career Second

GraduationIt’s here again: High school graduation season — that annual rite of passage for high schoolers coast to coast to embark upon that much-anticipated journey from home to that first true independent step outside the safety net of their childhood communities.

What always amazes me is the pressure high school kids feel as they embark upon this journey and how often I hear these kids express anxiety over not knowing what they want to be “when they grow up.” And, let’s not forget that we are still talking about kids — these are still teenagers, still developing and maturing. Read more »

*This blog post was originally published at Dr. Gwenn Is In*

Latest Interviews

IDEA Labs: Medical Students Take The Lead In Healthcare Innovation

It’s no secret that doctors are disappointed with the way that the U.S. healthcare system is evolving. Most feel helpless about improving their work conditions or solving technical problems in patient care. Fortunately one young medical student was undeterred by the mountain of disappointment carried by his senior clinician mentors…

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How To Be A Successful Patient: Young Doctors Offer Some Advice

I am proud to be a part of the American Resident Project an initiative that promotes the writing of medical students residents and new physicians as they explore ideas for transforming American health care delivery. I recently had the opportunity to interview three of the writing fellows about how to…

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Latest Cartoon

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Latest Book Reviews

Book Review: Is Empathy Learned By Faking It Till It’s Real?

I m often asked to do book reviews on my blog and I rarely agree to them. This is because it takes me a long time to read a book and then if I don t enjoy it I figure the author would rather me remain silent than publish my…

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The Spirit Of The Place: Samuel Shem’s New Book May Depress You

When I was in medical school I read Samuel Shem s House Of God as a right of passage. At the time I found it to be a cynical yet eerily accurate portrayal of the underbelly of academic medicine. I gained comfort from its gallows humor and it made me…

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Eat To Save Your Life: Another Half-True Diet Book

I am hesitant to review diet books because they are so often a tangled mess of fact and fiction. Teasing out their truth from falsehood is about as exhausting as delousing a long-haired elementary school student. However after being approached by the authors’ PR agency with the promise of a…

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