Welcome Guests! Thanks for joining me on this fine day for the Grand Rounds host Birthday Edition, Vol. 5, No. 31 -- where the best of this week's medical and health blogging comes to party.
And now straight to the festivities, where you'll find some delightful surprises in store:
Birthday cake, anyone? Alison Finney, a fellow diabetic and author of Shoot Up or Put Up, shares my April 21 birthday! (also with the Queen of England). She's turning 30, and finds this a good time to look back at her first birthday with diabetes, when her parents took a novel approach to "diabetic-friendly" cakes.
Chris Nickson of Life in the Fast Lane is yet another April 21 birthday baby! This week, he's in the midst of a 4-part series on the sweet strategy of "positive pimping" -- with mixed success.
Yet another kindred spirit: Laura Brandes of My Favourite Number describes her first Easter/Birthday celebration living with both type 1 diabetes and celiac disease (my illness twin!) She's focused on the importance of diligent testing/diabetes management "for the proper enjoyment of this celebratory day full of gluten-free goodies, friends, dancing, wine and ice cream." XOXO, Laura!
And a very happy 4th birthday to David Williams' Health Business Blog! (read his roundup of favorite posts from each month)
Are Banana-Split Jelly Beans the Key to Happiness? That is the question, from How to Cope with Pain. Sugar is only a short-term high, of course. Read the post to find out what else creates good feelings in the long-term.
Did you happen to know that comedienne Paula Poundstone thinks Ring Dings make life worth living? This bit of trivia provided by Florence dot com. btw, food guru Michael Pollan happens to disagree, unless you're able to really able to compartmentalize your "special occasion food."
The Happy Hospitalist got a GPS wristwatch for his birthday on March 19th. He promptly went on vacation to Busch Gardens and rode rollercoasters with the GPS turned on. Pretty cool.
It's like a birthday for every doc who owns an iPhone these days! Insure Blog's Henry Stern reviews the new iTriage application -- putting access to vital info in the palm of both providers' and patients' hands -- and he interviews the CMO of Healthagen to boot.
Open this package, Medbloggers: Better Health Blog speculates that blogs will replace traditional media health beats, and that we'll get better information in the process ;)
Barbara of In Sickness and In Health has certainly experienced how illness can so easily get in the way of joy. Therefore, when you can experience something meaningful, even if it's something as familiar as a simple hike in the woods, it's a cause for celebration.
Over at Reality Rounds, the author's reminiscing about taking care of a special family on her birthday as a new nurse. "This family changed my life," she says.
Sometimes patients want nothing more than to offer gifts to thank their medical caregivers, but is this a conflict of interest? One ER physician over at MedScape realizes that maybe we shouldn't make things so complicated, especially when someone really sick just wants to kindly share their Elk Jerky (requires free login to access).
See also: some very nice thoughts on reclaiming the meaning of rituals vs. "hallmark moments" from Nancy Brown at Teen Health 411.
Good to know, from Healthcare Technology News: new Federal Trade Commission (FTC) rules on identity theft now cover Protected Health Information (PHI) as well.
The ultimate in serendipity from Axis Deviation: even when you're out Clubbing and celebrating, it helps to be trained as a doctor.
Now, how about Twister? Or a rousing round of Limbo? How low can you go? David Harlow's Health Care Law Blog discusses MGH pediatric heart surgery. Note: "Acting appropriately on this post should help ensure that a bunch of folks reach future birthdays."
Shall we try a little Pin the Tail on the... Dog? The Fitness Fixer blog will clear up any misconceptions straight away.
Speaking of blindfolding, here's a new game called "hide the evaluation": Dr. Bruno Oliveira reports on web sites that allow patients to "grade" their physicians, and how some physicians are now asking patients to sign forms promising not to participate on such sites (requires free login).
How about a peek at everybody's baby photos? That's always fun! Kerri Sparling writes about how her type 1 diabetes diagnosis didn't seem so far away until she stumbled upon old photos that proved just how much life has, and hasn't, changed.
Jenni Propoky, on the other hand, is trying out something called the "Be Here Now" experiment -- attempting to "live in the moment" for 30 days straight.
Test your party etiquette: Kim over at Emergiblog reminds us that she never passes judgment on her patients, and that nurses deserve the same fair treatment as well.
There's no way around it: you've got to invite the relatives. Over at Colorado Health Insurance Insider, Louise hosts a post from her father in-law. He's a retired psychologist who knows a thing or two about what it takes to make healthcare reform actually work.
What, guests talking politics, religion or sex? Oh my! Eve over at A Healthy Piece of Mind starts out by wondering "Why make the woman have surgery when a vasectomy is so much simpler?!" But there's much more to this story.
Ouch! Inside Surgery has the scoop on Farrah Fawcett's case of anal cancer, and a possible course of diagnosis and treatment for this unhappy condition.
IT'S MY PARTY AND I'LL CRY IF I WANT TO (more bad news)
Whaaaaaa!!!! NHS Blog Doctor shares a story of a birthday that went badly wrong in a UK hospital —- and "has been seized upon by the right-wing American media as an example of the evils of socialized medicine" (note: the twin babies were saved).
Sometimes things can go terribly wrong in routine surgery as well. Luckily, Other Things Amanzi is on the case -- with a post on the blood-stemming surgical principles of bongi.
Clinical Cases and Images blog reminds us that even when we're having fun, sometimes the party gets a little out of hand -- especially if you're freewheeling on the Internet. You don't want to end up in court, so be careful what you upload; have a look at these tips for medical bloggers.
Getting your just desserts? Duncan Cross offers a dark look at the attitude that sick people are somehow getting what they deserve -- complete with an "anti-birthday" cake.
OK, so now the party's nearly over and you're thinking about going back to work? Breath easy. Otherwise you too may be a victim of "occupational asthma," as reported this week by Allergy Notes.
Once you are back at work, Paper Mask blog reminds us to beware of "meeting fatigue": "The bigger the hospital, the more time you seem to spend in meetings and not actually treating patients."
GOODIE BAGS (don't leave without one)
To end today's festivities on a high note...
Over at AusMed they're having a peek at what's in the bag? It could be something really great, especially if the bag is squirming!
Laika's MedLibBlog has some goodies for you, all right. She reports on the many rewards of both applied science and research work.
Plus, always remember and never forget: there are enormous health benefits of laughter (especially for folks with type 2 diabetes and heart disease risks). Jan over at Doc Gurley blog reports on that which is well worth a giggle.
Thank you for joining my party, One and All!
Now I'm off to enjoy some gluten-free birthday delicacies in Boston, MA, as I jet out that way to participate in the Spring Health 2.0 Conference. (Read: I'm on an airplane all day today, so forgive me if I don't respond to emails and comments right away.)
Next week, please join Grand Rounds over at SixUntilMe.