Tuesday, May 03, 2005

Patients of a different breed

One of the reasons I enjoy my practise is because it's fun interacting with my patients. I learn a lot from them ! For example, one of my patients recently hand-carried her husband's frozen sperm sample with her from the USA in dry ice. I had always thought that in order to transport frozen sperm, one needed a dry shipper which keeps the frozen sperm chilled at minus 196 C. These are big, bulky expensive containers which are hard to get and diffcult to carry. A dry ice box, on the other hand, costs a few dollars, and dry ice is easily available at any caterer ! When I thawed the sample and saw the motile sperm, I was impressed - a new learning experience for me. She was an equine embryologist, and told me this is something they do routinely for horses ! Not only did I learn something new, I was able to educate my other patients about this much simpler and cheaper option as well by publishing this information on my website ! Patients can be the best form of CME - continuing medical education - if doctors are willing to learn from them. I feel this may also be because we are now seeing a different breed of patients - educated , articulate, net-savvy, who can think "out of the box" !


  1. just wondered if by new breed of patients you mean the educated woman. i can bet none of the CME, as you put, it is invariably coming from the female counterpart of your patients. men, generally seem to leave everything to their wives and doctors and restrict themselves to a 'need to know basis'. how about involving them for a change.

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