Every evening at dusk
As the sun finally shutters its eye,
The mosquitos rise and sing
Their tiny tuneless song
Because mosquitos cannot know
They have only a few weeks to live and find us
They cannot grasp how we recoil
From their delicate voice and touch
Our skin surprisingly vulnerable
Our blood remarkably easy to invade
Maybe they enjoy the breeze and purple sky
As much as the rest of us
Unable to fathom just how slyly
They disperse the miniscule vectors of disease
David Edelbaum ~
When I finished my medical training, almost sixty years ago, I was like many new graduates: I thought I knew it all.
I opened a private office in Los Angeles and paid courtesy calls on the local physicians to let them know my qualifications and my availability for consultation, as both an internist and a nephrologist. (The treatment of kidney disease was then in its infancy, and I was the area's first such specialist.)
With a wife, two children under age four, a home mortgage and an office to support, I needed to make a living. I took call at the local emergency rooms, worked nights at the VA Hospital and told my answering service to mention my availability to other physicians who might need assistance.
One of the very first doctors I visited was Dr. Lud, a large, friendly, highly competent and respected family physician. His patients adored him, and if he asked you to consult on one of his cases, that was the Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval: It assured your standing within the medical community--and, of course, a steady income.
Kristin Beard ~
"Get the patient on the monitor."
"How long has he been down? Someone get on the chest!"
"Keep ventilating. He's in v-fib. Defibrillate at 200."
"Charging, everybody clear?...Shock delivered."
"Resume compressions. Push one of epinephrine...Hold compressions. What rhythm is he in?"
"He's asystole, resume compressions."
We repeat the process a hundred times over. The medic said they started coding the patient an hour ago. The family is in the consult room with the chaplain.