Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Grand Rounds Vol. 5 No. 30 is up


This week's edition of Grand Rounds is hosted by Flavio over at Pharmamotion.

I hope to read a few of these when I come up for air in between feverish bouts of lecture preparation.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

A Lean Month for Blogging

Until I meet a few deadlines, this will be a lean month for personal blogging.

I'm hitting the road for the ARRS meeting next week, followed by a few days of visiting professorships around the country. This means putting 7 new lectures together over the next 2 weeks.

Good thing I enjoy show biz...

CT Colonography -Train at Home

The day is young, but the leading contender for Spam-of-the-Day is already in my e-mail inbox: CT colonography training at home.

I guess I'll file this tidbit under activities for consenting adults.

Crikey, I'd rather have my spleen removed through my nose...

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Grand Rounds Vol 5. No. 29 is up


The latest issue of Grand Rounds is hosted this week by Leslie, at Getting Closer to Myself.

This week's theme is "reflections on the way life used to be".

Along these lines, I used to carry a stethoscope, but gave it up long ago for the rock star lifestyle of an academic radiologist. My Grand Rounds contribution, Just Say No to Stethoscopes, has more to say on why this is a Good Thing.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Just Say No to Stethoscopes


Rats of the Middle Ages, move over -- there's a new disease vector in town: health-care workers, and they're packing methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) in their stethoscopes.

This story crawled out into the TV news recently, in reaction to a recent paper in Prehospital Emergency Care.

In a study of emergency medical services providers, 50 stethoscopes were cultured, and 16 (32%) grew MRSA. Oddly enough, 32% of the same providers had no clue when they had last cleaned their stethoscopes. Coincidence, or satanic confluence?

This isn't a new idea. My cursory search of PubMed turned up a number of other articles on the same topic, including a 1995 study showing that 89% of the stethoscopes carried by ER workers were contaminated with staphylococcus. What's new is that this ubiquitous staph is lately more and more likely to be the more dangerous MRSA variety.

However, if you are going to catch a disease because you were auscultated, touched or sneezed on by a physician, chances are really, really good that it won't be from a radiologist. I'm proud to say that my specialty is leading the fight against this scourge. While the internists are obsessively scrubbing their stethoscopes between patients, we have an far more effective plan: we don't even know where our stethoscopes are.

We invite other physicians to join our crusade -- "Just Say No!" -- to stethoscopes.