Thursday, September 13, 2012

No Minor Patients

Been reading blog updates from Dr. David Lauter, a surgeon on his first MSF assignment (Doctors Without Borders). After his first week he recounted about the 25 operations he has done. 18 of these were considered minor/medium operations in the US (13 cases of incision and drainage of abscesses, 2 groin hernia repairs, 2 skin grafting and 1 orthopedic manipulation under GA). He recounted that these are operations that a young surgeon doesn't dream of doing particularly because these aren't glamorous or challenging (at least he didn't when he was young, and I must admit nor did I). Then he went on writing about those "minor" surgeries. To read more about Dr. Lauter's update please check it out here. He ended his update with these words:

"That sums up my 13 minor operations for the week. When a surgeon is disinterested or nonchalant about doing a “minor” operation, he/she should think of the famous quote by Stanislavsky “Remember: there are no small parts, only small actors” as a metaphor for our trade. Although not terribly glamorous, the good that will come from these operations to our 13 patients and their families is major. Maybe the saying for surgery could go “Remember: there are minor operations but there are no minor patients”.

Thursday, September 6, 2012


Meet Lagoon. He's the newest member of my little family (of felines, yes, I might one day become one of those weird cat ladies). He's 2 months old now, almost 3. We named him after the place we got him from, the Magic Lagoon. He was one of the stray kittens loitering around the place. When we found him (or was it him that found us?) he was so scrawny and dirty. He had a cigarette burn near his bum and his whiskers were badly burned. He kept on climbing our laps, alternating between me and Nollen, rubbing his face on us, almost like beseeching us to take care of him. He blatantly refused any food we offered him and instead kept on making that pitiful sound and kept on climbing back our laps even after we put him down. It was as if he was saying that he prefers love over food. Well, he was running a fever then. He didn't have much of an appetite. Needless to say he won my heart. We brought him home and took care of him. The first 3 days he barely ate at all. He would just lay beside me, curl up and sleep. I honestly thought that he just wanted to be brought home to die. I thank the Lord that he didn't. Eventually he got better and he proved to be a very sweet kitten, ready to indulge my need to hold him for long periods. :)


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