Being a doctor insurance was often one of the thorns in my side. Thankfully, since I’m retired I don’t have to deal with it any longer. Even moreso, I’m glad I won’t have to deal with the new health care law in the United States. Obamacare is the informal name for the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, which is also sometimes shortened to the Affordable Care Act. President Obama signed the statute into law on March 23, 2010. It is an attempt at sweeping health care reform in the United States, with the primary aim being to broaden access to affordable health insurance and reduce the rising costs of health care in the country. It includes requirements for uninsured individuals to buy health plans, for businesses with fifty or more full-time employees to provide health insurance to those workers, and it expands Medicaid eligibility for those states that choose to participate.Read More
It’s hard to believe how many years have passed since I finally accomplished my life long dream of becoming an orthopedic surgeon. Today, many friends that I have the chance to reacquaint with seem like strangers from a distant land. But I can’t forget how many of these very same people influenced me in my life and propelled me in my quest for knowledge and pursuit of excellence.
In some ways, my oldest companions are the books I still have with me that have also served as a source of inspiration from as early as my pre-college days. I need them back then as not everyone was as encouraging as young boy might want them to be.
One particular book had a major impact on me in my earlier years. It was a book of philosophy built around the concepts of Greek and Roman wisdom which included the brief, yet astute saying, “Qui docet, discit” which translated means “he who teaches, learns.”
Using this simple saying really helped my skills as a surgeon to evolve to a lever that I hadn’t previously thought possible. Any surgical procedure I learned, any medical concept I studied, and any statistical analysis that I worked on grasping, I always made sure that I was able to explain it myself.
Unfortunately, it seems that these days more and more time is being spent preparing students for passing test than actually helping them to improve their skills. And even some of the skill training seems quite questionable to me. I’m thoroughly that robotic surgery is any better than traditional surgery – in fact, I’m quite convinced it’s not. Not only that, but it’s a certain that such so-called “state of the art” devices add additional costs to already mounting Medical Tuition hikes.
And that’s the last thing today’s future doctors need. I’ve seen too many young doctors file for bankruptcy, run up huge credit card bills, take out loans for people with poor credit, or take out second mortgages on their homes. I’m pretty sure the Affordable Health Care Act isn’t going to help their situation out either. I wouldn’t be surprised if the whole thing gets repealed soon.
I suppose I probably am coming off as a bit pompous in my post here, but nothing could be further from the truth. My years in government service provided me with more than my share of humility. I won’t go into much detail right now, but it was inside of that environment that a person who I had initially scorned and thought inferior to me eventually ended up saving my life.
And that takes me back full circle to how I started out this post. My friends, my books, and my life have changed in ways that I never could have imagined when first starting out my quest to be an orthopedic surgeon. I was brought up in a family where I was taught that work has value and to value my work. Unfortunately, the value of friendship was discussed less, but as I made it through the maze that was my career I learned that sometimes both work and friendship are inseparable things.Read More
Spider veins are the common term used to refer to visible veins through the skin. Spider veins are usually blue or purple in color and are concentrated around a center spot that often gives off the look of a spider web. Spider veins are signs of not taking care of your body, but are common and do not directly expose the person to any health risks. Spider veins are caused by not giving your feet enough rest and often appear in women because of wearing heels too often. Spider veins are just a cosmetic issue and treatment is just for cosmetic purposes. There are various treatments to reducing and hiding spider veins through laser treatments that are quick, relatively painless, and high success rate.
If you have spider veins on your ankles or legs, you can rest assured that they are just a cosmetic issue and can be treated whenever you like. Treatment of spider veins, or sclerotherapy, is a specialty treatment and not often covered under most health insurances. You will also have to see a specialty doctor get treatment, such as Sclerotherapy Los Angeles. Typically, costs of spider veins treatment depend on the severity of the case. For small area treatments, costs can range from a few hundred dollars to $600. For larger cases however, treatment can cost from $1,000 to $4,000 for severe cases. Most people who get treated can expect to spend somewhere close to $500 per treatment. Once your spider veins have received the laser treatment, you can expect to not have to get treated again in the same spot for at least another 15 years.
Depending on your case, you might also need additional treatment to treat swollen ankles, blood clots, or discolored feet due to a build up of blood. You will need to ensure you go to a practice that can treat your exact problems. For example, vein treatment Aventura treats many different kinds of vein irregularities including spider veins. Your consultation with the doctor will determine whether you need to go to a spider vein treatment center or a more specialty doctor that can really help with your case. If you need to go to a specialty doctor, then you can expect to be billed for more amount of money as the treatment you need will be increased.
To prevent spider veins occurring in the future, ensure that you give your feet ample rest. If you are working and on your feet all day, ensuring you have good shoes and give your feet rest at the end of the day will significantly reduce your chances of spider veins appearing on your feet, ankles, and legs. Additionally, drink lots of water for better circulation and health. The amount of water you need to drink daily is 6 cups at least. Water will help the blood in your veins flow much more smoothly and interrupted decreasing your risk of spider veins appearing. As a final tip, eating healthy foods and less sugar also decreases your risk of getting spider veins. What do you do to prevent spider veins appearing?Read More
So although I like to write about a lot of different topics, one of the ones that is near and dear to my heart is medicine. Let’s face it….I was a doctor for the bulk of my life. The only other job I have had longer than a physician is being a spouse and that really hasn’t been to difficult. I thought I would share here one of the difficult cases I dealt with back in 1993. At that time I was doing a shift at our local emergency room. If you ever want to become a physician I actually recommend that you spend some time in the emergency room as you really do see a little bit of everything. On that day I saw one of the worst non-fatal accidents I had seen…
It was actually a Tuesday as I remember it quite clear. The ambulance brought in a gentleman whose leg was just crushed beyond belief. One of the charge nurses on duty actually seemed quite surprised at the patient has he was wheeled in. There was blood everywhere and this man was just screaming his head off in agony. We immediately gave him some pain medicine and got to work. Being an orthopedic surgeon I very quickly realized that the man’s leg would need an immediate open reduction with internal fixation or ORIF as it’s called. This basically means that since the man’s leg was broken so badly, in fact the exposed broken bone was sticking out of his skin, that he would need surgery to correct this. The procedure involves opening the leg up, putting the bones back to together, and placing a rod to hold them in place. Not really fun for the patient but sort of routine for me.
Without getting into details the surgery itself went quite well. However, it wasn’t until he was in the recovery room that things started getting really bad. Unfortunately the man started to go into cardiac arrest and it was all hands on deck to save his life. The doctor who had taken over had to use the paddles to get his heart going (thank goodness I’m an orthopedist as those paddles scare me). Anyway, the man ultimately recovered just fine and all was well.
So, where is the “horror story” in all of this? You might not believe it but a year later my daughter married him! Oddly enough she had known the patient, who’s name is Seth, and they became boyfriend and girlfriend and ultimately husband and wife. The “horror story” part of this is that he is now my son in law and I wouldn’t wish that surgery on anyone. It is in a whole new way you look at someone when they are family versus when they are patient. At the time he was my patient, but when he became my son-in-law my perspective changed.
Another interesting side note you might be wondering is how he got his leg crushed in the first place. Unfortunately accidents like these aren’t exactly rare, he got it crushed by a forklift on the job where he works. Seth got his forklift license years ago and he is a very hard working man. He always jokes that he should have paid more attention during forklift safety training watching videos like these, when instead he was actually sleeping in safety training class. Oh Seth, if you are reading this, I hope you are now paying attention to those videos when they show them to you at work!!Read More
By now I’m sure you know how important eating healthy is. From the time you were a child your mother harped on you about good nutrition. But what if you are just too busy? Eating healthy may be hard to manage for many people who are constantly busy. Maintaining a balanced diet may even seem hard to most people who are juggling their daily lives. Obesity has more than doubled since the nineteen seventies in almost every country in the world. The percentage rate for obesity in the United States today is a whopping seventy five percent. Many countries such as New Zealand, Australia, Canada, and the United Kingdom are not very far behind the percentile for the U.S.The main reason for this is that people simply do not have the time to sit down and eat a healthy meal at home. There are fast food restaurants around every corner and that is what draws us to them when we are in a hurry. When we go to these restaurants we usually always buy what we are used to versus other menu items simply because we are in a hurry. Most of these restaurants today carry low fat menu items that can be swapped with the regular meal that you usually order.
One example is that instead of ordering a deluxe cheeseburger and French fries you can swap it for a large salad with light dressing and fruit on the side. Nutritionally, the large salad and fruit will be more fulfilling then the burger and fries, due to the fact that the burger and fries are loaded with empty calories. Food that has tons of empty calories has almost zero nutritional value and are loaded with calories that will not be used as fuel for the body. Our bodies require a certain amount of caloric intake of nutritional calories to maintain a healthy diet.
One of the biggest changes that anyone can make to their diet is eating a healthy breakfast. There are so many people who do not eat breakfast and this is one quick way to blow any diet. An example of the perfect breakfast would be to swap a sausage muffin for a bowl of old fashioned oats with fresh or frozen fruit mixed in it. By using the fruit you will not need to add any sweetener because the fruit is a natural sweetener by itself. For lunch instead of wasting twenty minutes to buy fast food you can pack a healthy lunch and enjoy sitting while you eat. Again, this swap may be the large salad with light dressing and fresh fruit on the side. Another possibility if ordering take out could be lean low-fat turkey, low fat cheese, fresh veggies, and whole wheat bread or wheat pita bread.
If you haven’t ever thought of the dangers of fast food dining, I recommend watching a movie called “Fast Food Nation.” It’s really powerful. Here is the trailer for that movie and it might just keep you from going to a fast food place next time you are hungry:
Every meal should be enjoyed while sitting. The slower you eat, the quicker you will become full. By changing up menu ideas to more healthy, low-fat foods, you will be able to lose weight and still feel satisfied with your meals.Read More
We first got to our hotel and I was really pleased. It was called the Sevilla Palace and it really did seem like a palace. We chose this hotel because it was located on the Paseo de la Reforma which is one of the busiest streets in Mexico City. We wanted to close to all the hustle and bustle.
Once we got settled into our hotel we were ready to start exploring Mexico City. Mexico City is an old city and there are many different monuments and architectural sights to see. The first thing we saw was the El Angel de la Independancia. This is a beautiful monument with a dramatic angel on top. It’s basically a tribute to Mexico people who lost their lives in the War for Independence. It is very moving and makes for a great photo opportunity.
The next thing to do on our list was to check out some museums. Mexico City is known around the world for its variety of famous pieces. We checked out the Modern Art Museum which was amazing. It had so many pieces that were unlike anything I have ever seen. After that, we went to the National Museum of Anthropology (unfortunately site is only in Spanish) which gave us a nice background on Mexico as a country and how it developed.
Of course, while my wife and I appreciate all the historical aspects of our trip, we definitely love to eat. We were eager to check out Mexico City’s vibrant restaurant scene. Café de Tacuba is a place that we liked so much, we went there twice on our trip. I had their chile relleno. Now this is a dish that I’ve had many times at Mexican restaurants in the states but none could come close to this. It was amazing and the sauce was out of this world. My wife was all about their tamales. She let me have a couple bites and they were awesome as well. We also tried Bellini, which is a restaurant that revolves. It allowed us to have a great view of Mexico City while we ate.
My wife and I have been in the process of remodeling our home. Let’s put it this way – it was time! We’ve lived in the same house for many years and quite honestly, the age of the home was beginning to show. Also, my wife has been super patient in her desire to remodel. I have always had a good excuse for delay: “I am busy.” “We need more money.” “I’m not sure what I want.” These were all just excuses to put off the home remodel. Now that I’m retired, well, those excuses are gone.
Now that the bulk of that process is behind us (we still have much more to do though) I can share my thoughts on things to consider if you are going to remodel. First, I would recommend that you not just increase the size of your home just because. Instead, you will want to focus on increasing the functionality of the space you already have. I think most people just assume they want a larger home. However, sometimes you just need to rework, re-purpose, or simply update the square footage that currently exists. In our case, the kitchen itself was just great size-wise. However, the appliances were old and didn’t work well, the cupboards were pine (I never heard the last of that one from my wife), and the plumbing needed to be redone. So, when we remodeled this was our first focus area. Right away we put in Wolf appliances, gorgeous cupboards handmade by a local craftsman, and of course reworked the plumbing.
Another consideration for a remodel that you might not consider is demolition. In the example of our kitchen my wife and I did the demolition. Why? Well slinging a sledgehammer is fun! Even though that is true the real reason we did it was to save $3,000 bucks. The contractor we hired quoted us that price to hire a subcontractor to do the demolition. Since I am retired, and my wife wanted that kitchen gone in a hurry, we decided to do the demo ourselves. I must say it was quite an experience with the added benefit of saving money. I recommend you do the same if you have the option and the time. Just know this – demolition can be very dangerous which is why so many people get injured on the job while doing it. Make sure you take safety precautions so you don’t end up getting hurt in an accident like this guy. There are tons of stories out there about people doing work and getting injured so my advice as “your” doctor, is to stay safe while having fun!
Something most people don’t think about during their remodel is the need to consult an architect. I can’t stress this point enough as it paid great dividends for us. The fact is our kitchen remodel was so extensive that we actually ended up removing a wall and placing a window to the outdoors where a wall used to be. How did we accomplish this? By hiring an architect to spec it all out for us. It is also important to make sure that all the proper permits are obtained and the construction contractor has detailed information on how to carry out the remodel. You can plan on spending around $2,000 for an experienced architect but we are living proof that it is well worth the price.
I plan on writing a lot about home remodel and other things related to the home so this is just a start. I actually have to go now….my wife has made me dinner from our new kitchen haha!Read More