Word and Image

Archive for December 19, 2022


I discovered that you can take pictures of x-rays or screen images for the purpose of documentation and giving talks about the pathology you are treating and operating upon. It is mucho badness. Nothing good caused these patients to require care and surgery. There are of course happy endings in which the patient recovers and is saved and lives happily ever after. That is what I would like to remember. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work out that way all the time. I recently came across a cousin who’d had some operation upon her neck. Every one of the relatives spoke of it in hushed awe. She was so much better. ??? next I saw her I took her hand and tested her quickly without comment. Curiosity? Mine. What the hell magical surgical cure had she had? A cervical laminectomy. No anterior neck scar. And she had a positive Hoffman’s sign with wasting of the dorsal interosseous muscles. . End stage cervical myelopathy. There is no way to spin happiness or a happy ending from this finding. Note to self: keep mouth shut. I did.