Stethoscope- A noose around the neck in these times ?? Dec02

Stethoscope- A noose around the neck in these times ??...

For more than a century, there have been few objects that have commanded respect and been a symbol of dignity and pride as the STETHOSCOPE. As a child, holding a stethoscope fueled many a dream. Listening to one’s own heart beat was a magical moment. It was not only the doctor on house call in the good old 80s and 90s who used to be treated with reverence, but even the Stethoscope and the briefcase. Why, even Bollywood movies in the 70s and 80s used to have a scene centered in the hospital or a doctor making a house call complete with his suit and stethoscope which would contribute to the climax of the movie (a different matter as to how realistic it used to be). But now times are –a – changing. It’s been a year now since this incident happened but I recall it with anguish and pain at how demoralising the profession can get at times. This incident happened almost a year back when movies and the political system were constantly engaged in taking potshots at the medical professsion. A young doctor, fresh from his post graduation, having finished a long 36-hour duty and 50 admissions through a sleepless night decides to head home. The duty, apart from the routine pneumonias, fever, diarrheas also involved shifting 3 patients to the ICU in the nick of time, counselling a family that their only son has been diagnosed with leukemia and explaining in a somber way the treatment options and prognosis to fill them with some hope, and much more. With the duty having been finished, and looking forward to sleep, the doctor decided to hitch a ride back home. The last thing the doctor wanted to do on a post duty day was...

The Doctorless Patient Jul15

The Doctorless Patient...

A young medical student recounts her first week of medical college life and an indelibel expression- not in the wards or the hospital or the labs, but on a bus journey In a bustling bus lingered a vacuous seat, ‘She’s impure,’ they proclaimed; indiscreet. The poor, frail woman shed tear after tear… ‘Don’t sit next to her,’ they warned a sneer. The wide-eyed young girl looked on in curious worry, As the fierce conductor tried to make the woman scurry. The amused passengers laughed on encouragingly, As he tugged at her bag, her hand, even her dignity… Spurned by the hospital, in society she had no place, For she had not the money to be referred to as a ‘case’. Her sole possessions- her untended disease and her fright, The doctorless patient drowned in her ceaseless plight… Melancholia stared deep into the girl’s wide eyes, They welled with desolation as she heard the helpless cries. Her dream of becoming a doctor would soon come true. But oh doctorless patient, what will become of you? In today’s advanced age of robotic surgery and tele-medicine, there lurks a dark, dark corner that is often overlooked. Neglected, helpless and lost, the story of the doctorless patient is never told… As I got into a bus to take me home, in my very first week of being a medical student, my mind was buzzing. It had always been my dream to become a doctor, and I was fascinated by the secrets of the human body that were slowly being unveiled before my wide eyes. I felt powerful. ‘One day I will be a doctor, and I will save lives.’ Little did I know that my seemingly mundane daily bus journey would be the source of an important life...