A medical student’s simple cartoon guide about Diabetes type 1 and 2, made by Serena Luong. This is a Cartoon Story about what diabetes is, and how to treat it. Made by an astute 4th year medical student, who observed the confused look when the doctors gave him this diagnosis. She went back and the next day, made this:
These are kids too, living on the border of Syria and Lebanon
The number of children displaced by war continue to occur and these children have been born and raised in refugee camps for the past 6 years. They are the survivors of a system they did not endorse or create. They are “schooled” “housed”and “cared” for pretty much on their own with only their mothers and some men to provide. If they are healthy they live longer, if not they have to make do. Yet, they play like all kids, they laugh, they joke, they wonder, and they embrace. Nov 2016
Stories of Medicine- Real Accounts (personal identifying information has been changed in order to protect the privacy and identity of patients)
The Stories of our patients, families, and even providers in the field.
Medicine can only best provided, as we learn, listen, understand the “context” of illness as it relates to the stories of our patient’s lives and experiences.
The Stories told here are real. They are a collection of narratives of medicine.
We physicians only see and understand part of the story, there is so much more we need to know, feel, and gather, and even that is not enough. Narrative medicine teaches us that the stories of patients, their lives intertwined with illness, recovery, and the unsurmountable is a reflection of who we are as a society.
With the filter of electronic record, meaningful use, checklists, order sets, and algorithm- based data science takes us a measure away from actually bearing witness to what really heals patients. Knowing who our patients are, their lives, their struggles, limitations, and strengths is also vital to care.
I write in order to convey some small part of that narrative. I or my interpretation of my experience in medicine may not be all, but I hope it begins the conversation of how we as healers can look beyond the filters.
I invite you, also, to share and reflect, your experiences or struggles in illness and health through any form of literary, art, music, or narrative.