A Piece of My Mind Section Editor: Roxanne K. Young,
I came back to the hospital after office hours just to tell Seana the
As her general internist, I knew there was no real need for
me to tell her, as she would be just coming out of general
anesthesia and was, technically, on the surgery service.
But I felt that I should. This would be her fourth major surgery to try
and defeat the inexorably metastasizing colon cancer. Each surgery and
course of chemotherapy had bought some time, but this one was being
done because she was only 48 years old. The oncology surgeon, a
perfectionist, was also a marathon runner, and this surgery came more
from that state of mind than from one of genuine hope. This had been
one patient for whom we had all been going the extra mile.
Magrisso RM. Three Lessons. JAMA. 2000;284(11):1351-1352. doi:10.1001/jama.284.11.1351