Prefer an Older Doctor? Study Says This Could Put You at Risk

The oldest working registered nurse in America is 91, and she has worked as a nurse for more than 70 years! As a healthcare professional myself, I admire such a strong dedication to the healthcare field as well as a passion to help other people. I bet this nurse could do her job in her sleep! And if I were admitted to her care, I may take comfort in knowing that someone who is very seasoned in their job is addressing my health concerns. It is the same reason I usually prefer an older, more experienced pilot over a younger one with less flying time under their belt.

Does Your Doctor Have a Racial Bias? Study Suggests False Beliefs Could Affect Black Patient Treatment Recommendations

We previously discussed a study published a couple of years ago online in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. The study found that some medical students’ false beliefs about biological differences between black and white patients may affect how they perceive a patient’s pain.

New study: Replacing male doctors with female doctors could save thousands of lives

If we replaced male doctors with female doctors, at least 32,000 senior citizen lives could be saved each year, according a new study published in JAMA International Medicine, a recent LA Times article reports.

Medical error: The third leading cause of death in the U.S., new study says

Heart disease, cancer and …. medical errors? We didn’t see that one coming. According to findings recently published in the British Medical Journal, medical error is the third leading cause of death in the U.S. At least 250,000 deaths each year can be attributed to medical care gone wrong, the study reported. Medical errors may include getting a drug you’re allergic to or contracting a preventable infection in the hospital.

Patients pleading for better care of the P’s and Q’s

I used to drive a BMW. Because it was a high-performance vehicle, I felt compelled to take the car back to the dealership for service. Each time I returned to the service office with my BMW key, I was welcomed in a manner that would put Dino greeting Fred Flintstone to shame. A warm hello, a disarming smile and a how-may-we-make-your-day-so-much-more-awesome approach was the spirit each and every service representative exuded and bestowed upon me. I half expected a relaxing shoulder rubdown in the waiting room.

Inaccurate beliefs about black patients’ biology can lead to inaccurate treatment recommendations

Are some doctors letting skin color affect their clinical decisions? A new study published online in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences found that medical students’ false beliefs about biological differences between black and white patients may affect how they perceive a patient’s pain. Researchers collected survey results from 222 white medical students at the University of Virginia.

How to discuss your health issues with your doctor

As medicine gets more complicated, not all doctors practice in the same way. Different doctors might know more about natural or holistic methods; other doctors might know the latest, daring surgical methods. More patients are preparing for their doctor visits with medical research studies, WebMD printouts, and emails to other doctors in the same specialty.

Arthroscopic surgery may have no benefit for osteoarthritis of the knees

If you have osteoarthritis, you know the pain that accompanies simple tasks like standing up or walking. So naturally, you want to do whatever you can to get some relief and get back to enjoying your life, pain-free. You talk to your doctor about treatment options, and perhaps you've been offered the option of arthroscopic knee surgery. Let’s review what this procedure is, its effectiveness, and what other options you can consider.

Butting heads? What to do when you disagree with your doctor

Have you ever disagreed with your doctor—whether silently or out loud? Either way, it’s an uncomfortable situation. You're putting your trust in him or her as a professional, yet you have a problem with how the doctor wants to proceed with your treatment. Read on to find out what some of the most common disagreements are, and for ways to effectively convey your decision to your doctor.

Why did you pass out during the blood draw?

Fainting – It can happen to otherwise healthy people! You may feel faint and light-headed and then suddenly lose consciousness or pass out. The most common cause of fainting (especially among children and young adults) is neurally mediated syncope, which is also commonly referred to as vasovagal syncope or a vasovagal response. In a vasovagal response, your blood pressure drops and the heart does not pump a normal amount of oxygen to the brain. The response is often triggered by anxiety or emotional distress, sometimes even from the sight of blood during a blood draw. This type of fainting can lead to minor injuries, like cuts or bruises from falling, but it is considered to be relatively harmless in most cases.

Let a patient advocate guide you through the health care minefield

You talk to a real estate agent before purchasing a house; you hire an accountant to help you with your taxes; and you consult a life coach before making career decisions. But when it comes to your most important asset, your health, you probably blindly accept whatever your health care provider tells you or you consult with “Dr. Google.” In other words, you have a team to help you manage your wealth but you go it alone when it comes to your health. Does this sound like you? And does this make sense in today’s world?

Do you have enough benefits in your health plan to cover your hospitalization?

When you seek treatment at a doctor’s office or hospital, you will typically be asked for your health insurance information. If you have a health plan, the doctor or hospital will contact your health plan to verify whether you are a member and to verify your benefits. Often, the information received from the plan can mislead the verifier into thinking that you have more benefits than are actually available.

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