Tag Archives: Brain tumor

“Avoid a remedy that is worse than the disease”

Howard Fischer Uppsala, Sweden   Hair loss in child with tinea capitis infection. CDC, 1970. Public domain. Overconfidence is an undesirable quality. It does not enhance a physician’s approach to learning, nor to changing when change is needed. How a doctor diagnoses or treats a condition today may cause future generations of physicians to wonder, […]

The sleep of doctors

Barry Meisenberg Annapolis, Maryland, United States   Los Caprichos’: The sleep of reason produces monsters (El sueño de la razon produce monstruos) 1799. Fransisco de Goya. Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art  The gods who rule 2AM summon the doctor from sleep to the sequestered place where the veneer of unearned pride is bleached away. You forgot […]

W.W. Keen: physician to the presidents

Kevin R. Loughlin Boston, Massachusetts, United States   Figure 1. The cheek retractor used in Cleveland’s operation. From The surgical operations on President Cleveland in 1893 by W. W. Keen. 1917. Via the Internet Archive. William Williams Keen served in the American Civil War and was present at the first and second Battle of Bull […]

The Last Angry Man: A caged eagle

Howard Fischer Uppsala, Sweden   Still from The Last Angry Man. From the Collection of African American film materials at the Southern Methodist University Library. © 1959, renewed 1987 Columbia Pictures Industries, Inc. All Rights Reserved. galoot: an awkward or uncouth fellow. – Oxford English Dictionary galoot: someone who thinks the world owes him a […]

The smell of burning rubber: the fatal illness of George Gershwin

James L. Franklin Chicago, Illinois, USA   George Gershwin, 28 March 1937. Photograph by Carl Van Vetchen. 1937. Library of Congress Prints and Photographs division. On the morning of Monday July 12, 1937, New Yorkers who had just suffered through five days of a heat wave that left thirty-eight people dead, awoke to read on […]

New life

Hannah Joyner Takoma Park, Maryland, United States    Photography by dierk schaefer At first I thought I had a sinus infection, expecting to come home with a course of antibiotics. The doctor initially agreed, but when he heard my account of facial numbness spreading around my left eye, he referred me immediately to a neurologist, […]