Medical decisions – the illusion of control

This is a very short story about a baby bird, a yoga mom and a hawk. I tell it because it made me think about the disordered way we frame healthcare decisions. **** The neighborhood is one of old brick houses, cracked cement sidewalks and tall trees. What was once a suburb is now a […]

Struggling with the (relative) value of humanistic medical care –

I just arrived in San Francisco. I am here for the 2014 Heart Rhythm Society sessions. The meeting begins today. A poster session this evening is overflowing with notable studies. Stay tuned. I’ll be working hard for theheart.org to bring you the best stories. First, though, here’s a little appetizer. On the eve of the […]

Atrial fibrillation and philosophy…

Patterns. As a doctor, you learn to see patterns. Biologists call the patterns of organisms phenotype–as opposed to genotype, the genetic makeup. For twenty years, I have observed the phenotypes (patterns) of people afflicted with AF, and have come to believe, and data are beginning to confirm, that the disease doesn’t just happen. It’s not […]

A whimsical update on things buzzing in my head…

Hey all, I’ve hit a little tough patch in the area of writing. Simply said, it’s been difficult finding the time in recent weeks. That’s the funny thing about writing, the more I do it, the harder it gets. It takes longer now. So…In an effort to just feel better, and, because this is a […]

Vacation Time

It does look like a long swim

Hey all, The Mandrola family Spring break this year coincided with the American College of Cardiology 2014 Scientific Sessions. We are on a college tour in California. The cardiology community is in Washington DC. If you are interested in following ACC news, I’d recommend my colleagues and friends over at theHeart.org | Medscape/Cardiology. The ACC […]

The problem with testing students and doctors is what gets truncated

For me, maybe you too, the best part about science is how it disrupts the status quo. A belief, a way of doing something, a paradigm if you will, becomes entrenched. Humans love patterns. We get attached. I call this the way-it’s-always-been-done philosophy. It’s endemic in medicine, and, from what I can see, in education […]

When professors make less than janitors…

…one could be pessimistic. PBS NewsHour did this story last night. Adjunct professors, many of them with doctorates, are struggling to make a living. A French literature professor uses food stamps. An English professor just up and quit. This video got me thinking about the word “value.” The MacBook delivered this as the first definition: […]