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A Physician's Primary Prevention

Do you know how YOU are DOing?

black stethoscopeWe all know that doctor who worked constantly, took little time for himself or herself, always seemed to be doing “okay”, until you hear he or she had suffered a serious health concern, or worse yet, sudden death. Occurrences like this lead one to ask, “Could that have been prevented?”

Primary prevention. It is what we osteopathic physicians do well. Practicing evidenced-based medicine, identifying risk factors for leading causes of death and partnering with patients to reduce their relative risks for disease, and identify disease in the earliest treatable stages are the cornerstones of wellness. But when was the last time YOU saw your own physician? When was your last check-up? Do you know your blood sugar level, cholesterol level, BMI? How well is you blood pressure controlled? Are your immunizations and screenings up to date?

The leading cause of death for American physicians are the same top ten leading causes of death in the general population. According to the CDC, heart disease, cancer, chronic lower respiratory disease, accidents, stroke, Alzheimer’s disease, diabetes, influenza and pneumonia, kidney disease and suicide account for the majority of deaths. That list has not changed much in nearly seven decades (although tuberculosis was listed as number 7 in 1949). What has changed is our ability as medical professionals to identify risks and improve life expectancy (from 65 years for men and 70 years for women in 1949 to 76 years for men and 79 years for women in 2017).

Follow your own good medical advice; see your DOctor, Doctor! She’ll want to know how you are DOing!

Saying No

It's OK to say no

Saying know on lined paper with red pencilAs physicians, we’re all familiar with the saying, “It takes 30 minutes to say no and 30 seconds to say yes.”  The unique demands of this profession – including the value of our time and patient satisfaction measures not always being what is best for the patient – sometimes cause us to fall into the trap of saying the easy yes when we should say the difficult no.

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Something To Look Forward To

Taking time for yourself

Lounge chairs next to a pool on the beachsideWith the demands of practicing medicine coupled with balancing personal responsibilities, how easy it is to get caught up in our obligations and what I call the “have-tos”? No wonder we feel ourselves needing a vacation from it all!

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