Hopkins Surgeon Blasts Healthcare Safety, Ethics
I imagine that people who read his book will fret that their doctor is among those surgeons prone to perform procedures "as medically unjustified as injecting Botox into a furry dog."
Or that they are laggards who will use more dangerous, more invasive techniques simply because they lack the training to perform minimally invasive, safer procedures, and—out of greed—won't refer patients to a more competent provider who is better trained.
Makary's desire is for patients to be more skeptical and curious, to find out more about their providers, their hospitals, and their doctors.
"As a homeowner, you wouldn't hire a plumber to fix your fuse box," he writes. "The plumber's error could easily cause a spark that could burn your house to the ground. Yet every day there are patients sitting in waiting rooms waiting for the wrong doctor to treat their condition."
Makary, 40, is not your average doctor. He is a frequent contributor on CNN, and once was reportedly under consideration to be President Obama's Surgeon General. And he worked with Johns Hopkins' intensivist Peter Pronovost, MD, to reduce central line bloodstream infections through the well-known "checklist."
In an interview this week, I asked Makary what prompted him to write this horrifying "doctor-tells-all" book, and what he expects to accomplish with it.
The idea came four years ago, he says. That's when laparoscopic removal of the tail of the pancreas to remove cysts or tumors became the standard of care. It is vastly safer and better than the traditional "open" incision operations, he explains.
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