Approaching the radiologist

Rewind. Time for the Jedi Mind Trick. I held the films out. “This patient isn’t an operative candidate. I don’t know if you could even biopsy this mass. It’s really in there.” I prayed his ego would take the bait. The radiologist turned and snatched the films from me then threw them up on the lighted wall on his left. “Oh yeah, I can hit this, no problem. I’ll do it tomorrow, about 9.” And that, folks, is the Art of Medicine.

From Salvatore Iaquinta’s very funny internship memoir, The Year THEY Tried to Kill Me. The closest thing to a modern The House of God since…The House of God.

Me & Nanoism on NPR

yUFp12rpGot to put on my writer/editor hat and be a guest on WNPR’s Colin McEnroe Show to talk about Twitter Fiction, Nanoism, and read a few tweet-sized tales. This was my very first radio interview (and live is really tough, oof!). My part is toward the beginning, with Colin introducing me around the 6:45 mark. But you should at least listen to the very beginning, because their intro sketch bit is the best part of the show.

Book Review: The Hidden Curriculum & The Doctor’s Basic Business Handbook

David Kashmer’s The Hidden Curriculum: What They Don’t Teach You At Medical School

is up next on the Kindle Unlimited tour of physician books. I really feel like the title should read “in Medical School.”

Kashmer’s hardest sells in the book are on how valuable he thinks his MBA training was and how great locum tenens positions can be for a young physician’s lifestyle (he owns a locums placement company). It starts with the usual “I’ve made a lot of mistakes doing all the amazing things I’ve done” humblebrag and follows it up with a ton of common sense. I do applaud him for the copy editing and book styling, definitely a notch above the usual.

He also really promotes a company called Provider Lifestyle Experts, a service which helps with dealing with credentialing paperwork for $600/month. Yikes! Only in my wildest dreams could I one day make enough money to think spending over $7000 annually for some light paperwork help was a good use of cash.

There are some generally useful things about contract negotiation, but I think these are better and more succinctly covered by the second book in this review. The practical advice on how to deal with the vagaries of clinical practice sort of sound like marathon advice: At first you’ll be nervous. At some point, you’ll get tired. You may even want to quit. If you trip and fall, well that will probably hurt. How much is hard to say. Is that helpful? Not really. It’s obvious. It’s generally pleasant non-advice. Be nice, work hard, don’t do shady things, and if you’re job really is a terrible fit, get the hell out of dodge.

Overall: Skip unless it’s free and have 1-2 hours to burn and you got terrible clinical evaluations in medical school and residency (i.e. have no common sense).

Brandon Bushnell’s A Doctor’s Basic Business Handbook: Things I Wish I Had Known When I Got Started

is overall stronger, in that out of the 1 hour it takes to read it, 10-15 minutes are pretty interesting. The book is apparently an extended version of a talk he gave to some orthopedics colleagues.

Chapter 1 is “Ten Points You Need to Know About Contracts.” This is interesting and well written. It’s basically an excellent blog post.

Chapter 2 is an almost joke personal finance chapter: don’t act rich and get a financial planner (ugh).

This is followed by short chapters covering industry and hospital relationships, basics of coding/billing, marketing. All of this is fine and good basics.

Overall: Good if you know nothing, particularly the first chapter. Worth it on Kindle Unlimited/free. Otherwise pass.

New ExamGuru coupon code

Late last year I reviewed ExamGuru’s (new at the time) shelf exam question bank. The old coupon code expired a month or so back, so today I arranged for a new coupon code for those students looking for additional question sources.1 You can use BW15 through the end of the year to save 15% (and I also get a few bucks).

On a related note, there’s also now another shelf exam question source, from mega-exam prep purveyor, BoardVitals. I haven’t used it yet but some readers have brought it to my attention. I won’t pretend you need an additional question source in the first place, let alone that this is worth your time/money. I’ll try to check it out at some point in the future to give my personal yay/nay, but anyone intrepid/interested can purchase through this link and use code BW10 to save 10% as well.


  1. Damn you family medicine shelf! *shakes fist*