Philadelphia Medicine Summer 2019 - 16

p h i l a m e d s o c  .org

Feature continued

If you had just one book to recom- He turned to me and said, "Please keep the user to "travel" around the earth like a
mend to them, what would it be? Robert alive until I return in the morning?" satellite and zoom in on interesting places
Medical - I would recommend How
Doctors Think, by Jerome E. Groopman,
and Complications: A Surgeon's Notes on an
Imperfect Science, by Atul Gawande.
These two books discuss human nature
and the doctor-patient relationship, and are
beautifully written.
Non-medical books - Churchill, Walking
with Destiny, by Andrew Roberts.
This is still on my nightstand. It's long. It
is a biography that demonstrates how much
one can accomplish during his one short
life on earth and debunks ageism and the
negative aspects of personal idiosyncrasies.

What personal experiences have
you had that helped make you the
doctor you are today?
As a senior medical student I was on a
surgery rotation and one of the patients,
Robert, who had a hemi-gastrectomy for
stomach cancer had a terrible post-op course,
and was bleeding internally. The surgeon, the
chief surgical resident, was agonizing over
Robert's care and what to do. He had taken
him back to the OR to find the source of the
bleeding, and felt he had succeeded. He was
sure he could do nothing else but support
him until he recovered, and checked on him
hourly. There was a severe snow storm raging
and residents and staff were not getting to
the hospital in a timely fashion.
The surgeon had many other patients
to follow and was exhausted. There was
no other house-staff on the service that
night because of the storm. He had been
working two days straight without a break,
and Robert was his most critical patient.
Senior staff was not getting to the hospital,
and the surgeon was consulting with them
by phone. He was falling asleep on his feet
and could not function any longer. He said
he was leaving the SICU and going to bed.

16 Philadelphia Medicine : Summer 2019

He told me what to do depending on the - even one's house. This service eventually
patient's condition and vitals. He walked became Google Earth. I grew up with an
me to the head nurse and insisted to her interest in maps and Earthviewer became
that my orders were to be followed to the an instant addiction. I would regularly
letter. We were short-staffed and I must be stay up almost all night working with it.
respected like an attending physician.
Earthviewer attracted other addicts with
I was terribly nervous and upset. I had special interests in geography. A bulletin
been following Robert since his admission board service quickly developed where the
and had watched him go downhill. Early on, user could post questions or "look here"
he was obviously terrified at his diagnosis items with clickable attachments that would
and the impending surgery, and I was part take the reader directly to the location in
of the team that reassured him. And now question in Earthviewer!
he was intubated, catheterized, and with
central lines seemingly everywhere. He
was awake, and through the sedation was
seemingly pleading with his eyes "How did I
wind up like this?" "Don't let me die!" I was
suddenly "in charge" of keeping him alive!

This BBS became the Google Earth
Community (GEC), and eventually hosted
one million members. As one of the top
10 users, I was invited to moderate the
community and provide technical support
for users. When Google purchased Keyhole,
the
company that developed Earthviewer,
Well, I did get him through that long
we
"moderators"
moved over to Google
night, which exhausted me, and as staff
Earth.
We
were
not
paid a salary, but were
was managing to get to the hospital in the
flown
to
various
cities
around the world
morning, I signed out and walked home.
for
annual
meetings.
I
had
and still have a
When I woke up, I called the SICU to ask
great
time
relating
to
15
fellow
moderators
about Robert. He had passed away an hour
from
time
zones
around
the
world,
and
after I left. I felt terrible, but confident and
learning
so
much
about
the
earth
and
its
responsible as the chief surgical resident had
people.
I
could
forget
medicine
and
enjoy
seemingly had enough confidence in me to
believe that I was capable and responsible, the world...in my pajamas. Google disconand that I had accomplished a seemingly tinued the GEC about four years ago, but
it continues privately at http://alturl.com/
impossible task.
um2vf with fewer users. Google Earth, of
Later I realized that the patient must course, continues.
have been deemed unsalvageable and my
For additional relaxation I read nonfiction
unspoken job was to keep him going until
tomes,
especially about World War II and
the family could be informed. But that did
the
Civil
War. I also collect commercial
not shake the self confidence that I had
ship
models.
The large 2-5 feet long travel
developed that night, as a result of the trust
agency
window
type. I enjoy finding such
the surgeon had placed in me! Years later, that
models
at
estate
sales,
etc., and restoring their
surgical resident became an accomplished
hulls,
decks,
superstructures
and fittings to
cardio thoracic surgeon, and performed a
acceptable
condition.
"routine" cardiac transplant on the Governor
of Pennsylvania.
Most of all, I enjoy playing with my
grandchildren, and discussing medical cases
with one of my two sons who is a family pracWhat do you do to relax? What do titioner with Christiana in Wilmington. My
other son is a foreign affairs scholar in New
you do for fun?
York, and bounces between international TV
studios as a "talking head" interviewee on
In 2003, I discovered Earthviewer, a the news. He occasionally appears on and
computer subscription service that allowed writes opinions for CNN.


http://philamedsoc.org

Philadelphia Medicine Summer 2019

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Philadelphia Medicine Summer 2019

Philadelphia Medicine Summer 2019 - 1
Philadelphia Medicine Summer 2019 - 2
Philadelphia Medicine Summer 2019 - 3
Philadelphia Medicine Summer 2019 - 4
Philadelphia Medicine Summer 2019 - 5
Philadelphia Medicine Summer 2019 - 6
Philadelphia Medicine Summer 2019 - 7
Philadelphia Medicine Summer 2019 - 8
Philadelphia Medicine Summer 2019 - 9
Philadelphia Medicine Summer 2019 - 10
Philadelphia Medicine Summer 2019 - 11
Philadelphia Medicine Summer 2019 - 12
Philadelphia Medicine Summer 2019 - 13
Philadelphia Medicine Summer 2019 - 14
Philadelphia Medicine Summer 2019 - 15
Philadelphia Medicine Summer 2019 - 16
Philadelphia Medicine Summer 2019 - 17
Philadelphia Medicine Summer 2019 - 18
Philadelphia Medicine Summer 2019 - 19
Philadelphia Medicine Summer 2019 - 20
Philadelphia Medicine Summer 2019 - 21
Philadelphia Medicine Summer 2019 - 22
Philadelphia Medicine Summer 2019 - 23
Philadelphia Medicine Summer 2019 - 24
Philadelphia Medicine Summer 2019 - 25
Philadelphia Medicine Summer 2019 - 26
Philadelphia Medicine Summer 2019 - 27
Philadelphia Medicine Summer 2019 - 28
Philadelphia Medicine Summer 2019 - 29
Philadelphia Medicine Summer 2019 - 30
Philadelphia Medicine Summer 2019 - 31
Philadelphia Medicine Summer 2019 - 32
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/PCMS_Philadelphia_Medicine/PhiladelphiaMedicine_Fallr2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/PCMS_Philadelphia_Medicine/PhiladelphiaMedicine_Summer2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/PCMS_Philadelphia_Medicine/PhiladelphiaMedicine_Spring2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/PCMS_Philadelphia_Medicine/PhiladelphiaMedicineFallWinter2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/PCMS_Philadelphia_Medicine/PhiladelphiaMedicine_Summer2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/PCMS_Philadelphia_Medicine/PhiladelphiaMedicine_Spring2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/PCMS_Philadelphia_Medicine/PhiladelphiaMedicine_Winter2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/PCMS_Philadelphia_Medicine/PhiladelphiaMedicine_Fall2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/PCMS_Philadelphia_Medicine/PhiladelphiaMedicine_Summer2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/PCMS_Philadelphia_Medicine/PhiladelphiaMedicine_Spring2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/PCMS_Philadelphia_Medicine/PhiladelphiaMedicine_Winter2017x
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/PCMS_Philadelphia_Medicine/PhiladelphiaMedicine_Fall2017
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/PCMS_Philadelphia_Medicine/PhiladelphiaMedicine_Summer2017
https://www.nxtbook.com/hoffmann/PCMS_Philadelphia_Medicine/PCMS_Philadelphia_Medicine_Spring2017
https://www.nxtbookmedia.com