Tuesday, March 17, 2009

A sad, sad story

I've linked before to columns by Dr. Amy Tuteur, who blogs at salon.com. Today, salon has front-paged an excellent piece of hers, in which she describes a devastating experience from her medical internship, when she did not speak up against an oncologist who recommended chemo to a clearly-terminal patient.

I'm sure that many of us who have, or have had, cancer can relate to the oncologist's desire to pursue any chance of recovery, no matter how remote. But many of us who have had chemo can also relate to the patient's conviction that the end of life should not be a time of over-medicalization, but rather of sitting on a beach somewhere and saying goodbye peacefully (even if, still, painfully) to a lovely world.

The article is food for thought. It is very easy to be swayed by the signals we get from our doctors. One doctor who offers a strong opinion can change the entire rest of our lives--and they are not always right. To me, the moral of the story is: independent second opinions!!

3 comments:

spidercrunch said...

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Dennis Pyritz, RN said...

Great blog! I added you to my blogroll, Cancer Blog Links at www.beingcancer.net
Take care, dennis

Dennis Pyritz, RN said...

Open invitation to you and your readers to participate in the Being Cancer Book Club. This month we are discussing “The Last Lecture” by Randy Pausch. “...the lecture he gave ... was about the importance of overcoming obstacles, of enabling the dreams of others, of seizing every moment (because “time is all you have…and you may find one day that you have less than you think”). It was a summation of everything Randy had come to believe. It was about living.”
Monday is Book Club day; Tuesday Guest Blog and Friday Cancer News Roundup.
Also check out Cancer Blog Links containing almost 200 blog links and Cancer Resources with 230 referenced sites, both divided into disease categories.
Please accept this invitation to join our growing cancer blogging community at www.beingcancer.net
Take care, Dennis