I am a fan of the television show House, M.D. on the Fox Network. That's where diagnostic whiz Dr. Gregory House figures out the secret to a parade of patients' illnesses while, at the same time, saying the most inappropriate things. Viewers love it, real doctors hate it. I can't get enough. That's why this past Memorial Day weekend I was reading former CNN medical correspondent Andrew Holtz' book The Medical Science of House, M.D. On the last episode, "Wilson's Heart," there was a little sidebar scene where we found a young female member of House's team, "Dr. Thirteen," in...

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Kathi Goertzen is a big name in Seattle. She's one of the most prominent anchors on television in my hometown. She is a lovely woman. Also, for the past ten years, she has been a brain tumor patient. There have been highs and lows. Now she is moving into the world of experimental therapy and will be getting on a plane to cross the country to New York City where they'll try a kidney cancer drug for the tumor, a meningioma, in her brain – a tumor that threatens her hearing and her speech and, if left unchecked, would spell...

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This weekend we had a little medical "event" at our house. Esther and I agreed to host a high school senior prom "after party" for about fifteen 18-year-olds. Trouble ahead, right? We thought we'd give it a go as our son's friends are really great kids. And we made it clear there would be no drinking, no drugs. Just clean fun until they fell asleep in the wee hours of the morning. Parental supervision was close at hand. We always knew the weak link in this was if one of the kids had been drinking themselves silly before they arrived....

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Usually when you or your partner is pregnant, it is a joyous event. We have three kids, and I can remember when my wife, Esther, announced that she was pregnant with our first child. It was an announcement at a family dinner at the future grandma's house and I had the video camera rolling. The grandma-to-be was beside herself with happiness. I can still remember her turning to me and saying before the group, "Andrew, I am so proud of you!" It made me feel more like a man right off. But this only sets the stage of what I...

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I hosted a webcast today that featured old friends, Beth Mays, a parent of a child with eosinophilic gastroenteritis (EG), a relatively rare condition; and Dr. Glenn Furuta, a subspecialist in the condition from Children's Hospital of Colorado. I know them both since my daughter, Ruthie, has "EG" and has coped with it for several years. I met Beth, one of the nation's best examples of a parent patient-advocate, as I searched for information about EG some years ago. It was great to learn we were not alone and that Beth, through long hours and late nights, had developed a...

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I produced my first patient education program, a video on "erectile dysfunction" (that's another story), back in 1984 (That was the year my assistant producer, Blake, was born!). So I've been at this a long time. This was 12 years before I was diagnosed with leukemia and became a patient myself. And while I made a living back then producing programs to help people make informed healthcare decisions, it was not big money. It was, and remains, very satisfying. Along the way in the years since then I have met many high-powered business people. MBA-types (no disrespect to my wife,...

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Okay, what follows will not work for everyone. But, nevertheless, the story I am about to tell is one of hope and inspiration. It shows how just an off-hand comment, if you are listening and take action, can have a huge impact on your health. 54-year-old Barbara Woodman of Mt. Prospect, IL spent ten years living in pain. It followed a car accident. If she stood for awhile – required in her job as a teacher – she would get pain and numbness from behind her knees down to her toes. Pain medicine was required for years and she was...

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I hope you've had a chance to enjoy our new home page and our new look. Our goal is to continually update our content and the clarity of our communication to help patients and family members get the most compelling, most authoritative health information for their area of concern. I am delighted to tell you that an expanding list of highly respected medical centers support Patient Power. The newest additions are UCLA Medical Center in Los Angeles and Oregon Health and Science University in Portland, Oregon. As a group, we all believe in putting the patient at the center of...

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Each Spring for the past four years I have made a 3-4 day trip to Arizona with my son, Ari, now 18, to be a baseball fan and attend Spring Training games. This year we saw three games at three different stadiums. Each time the look of the crowd was different and, unfortunately, the waistlines of the men got progressively bigger. I am worried about them. At the first game was the typical Seattle crowd – pretty active folks and not a lot of obesity. But game #2 the next day was in fashionable Scottsdale where San Francisco Giants fans...

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For many Americans we move in parallel but separate universes. In my case, as an American Jew who is fairly "assimilated" I feel right in the mainstream. But I remember how my parents and their parents mostly lived in Jewish neighborhoods and associated mostly with Jewish people. My grandparents spoke Yiddish, an eastern European Jewish dialect, in the home. But that's all family history. However, in 2008 Hispanic-Americans, 44 million people, cling to varying degrees to using Spanish as their first language. And when they face the complexities of medical issues many Hispanics who speak English prefer to hear information...

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