Peter J. McDonnell, MD
He is director of The Wilmer Eye Institute, The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, and chief medical editor of Ophthalmology Times.
The first day in ophthalmology clinic
The famous line from George Bernard Shaw's "Man and Superman"—"those who can, do; those who can't, teach"—is sometimes quoted to explain why certain of us choose a career in academics. Fortunately for many medical students, the head of medical student education in my medical school was both a doer and a teacher.
Worming their way into the news
Two headlines broke new ground recently when it comes to horror and adversity. Coincidentally, they both involved worms and left eyes: "Woman pulls wiggling cattle worms from her eyeball, makes medical history" appeared along with "Brain-eating pork worm removed from man's eye."
Trying new things in medicine
My classmate in medical school, Eric, only became a medical student because his father insisted. Eric wasn’t happy about this until he discovered he loved ophthalmology. He went on to perform brilliantly as a resident and built an extremely successful and fulfilling practice. Eric’s story is not unique.
Does the ‘compliment sandwich’ give better feedback?
One approach that is sometimes recommended to give honest feedback is to deliver it between two positive comments. This is known as the “compliment sandwich.” While some advocates of this approach still assert its value, it is largely out of favor and is often ridiculed.
The doctor’s doctor
A few months into my residency, a patient and her husband came to see me in clinic. The history revealed they had already sought the opinions of two internationally acknowledged giants in the field of retinal disease, one of whom was a department chairman. The answers they received on those visits had differed somewhat, so they were now coming to get the tie-breaking third opinion. “Thank goodness they have no idea I am just a first-year resident,” I thought to myself.
Have we dodged another Zika bullet?
Now with mosquito season past in most parts of North America, it seems we can be confident the predicted spread will not come to pass—at least in this year.
Evidence-based ophthalmology
Why it is that ophthalmologists who read the same papers in the same journals have such widely varying approaches?
Knives, gunfights, pituitaries
Knives, gunfights, pituitaries
The idiom “Don’t bring a knife to a gunfight” is meant to convey the importance of not entering a challenging situation without the proper equipment at hand. The concept that one must come properly prepared and equipped to any important task or confrontation is well-appreciated by ophthalmic surgeons, but this particular expression is rarely used by ophthalmologists teaching eye surgery to residents.
May the force be with you, too
May the force be with you, too
Tomasso, a vitreoretinal surgeon, recently shared a blog by someone who calls him/herself “Neuroskeptic”.Neuroskeptic penned a spoof “scientific” article about midichlorians, which are the little organisms inside cells that give Jedi Knights (the good guys in the “Star Wars” movies) their powers (and unfortunately, confer those same powers to certain bad guys, like Darth Vader).
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