Even when the Patient is a Doctor…

Neil Spector, MD, is another of those hybrid doctor/writers (a schizophrenic existence I strive for myself). But he is also a patient.

But being a doctor (quite a high powered one – the Sandra P. Coates chair in breast cancer research and an associate professor of medicine as well as pharmacology and cancer biology at Duke University Medical Center and director of the Duke Cancer Institute, and a Komen scholar) didn’t protect him from being given the run around, and nearly dying – as he describes in Gone in a Heartbeat – A Physicians Guide to True Healing.

He got to the point where his heart was so damaged, and had such a low cardiac output that that normally a person would be in the ICU, and he needed a heart transplant to stay alive.

It turned out that he had Lyme Disease, but having moved from New England – (where it’s prevalent) to Florida (where doctors knew nothing about it) it took a long time – and a lot of damage – before it was figured out.

He also had some arthritis, which together with heart problems, is another of the classic manifestations of Lyme’s. But the moral is, even a doctor can spend years in the wilderness, undiagnosed and so not treated correctly.

Even a doctor has to look out for himself. Has to manage his doctor.

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