[Skip to Content]
[Skip to Content Landing]
July 9, 1982

The Universal Languages

Author Affiliations

Staten Island, NY

JAMA. 1982;248(2):233. doi:10.1001/jama.1982.03330020069034

In 1976,I traveled with the 40 dancers and musicians of the Philippine Bayanihan Dance Company on a ten-month cultural mission to Europe and the United States. I had graduated from the University of Santo Tomas in the Philippines the year before and completed my internship at the Veterans Memorial Hospital there, and I felt confident I could handle whatever medical problems the group would encounter. However, I had not expected my medical practice to go much beyond handing out medications for fever, cough, and colds and treating feet for splinters and cuts. I certainly had not expected to confront the first major medical problem of my medical career in East Berlin.

While performing at the Palace de la Republik, a dancer fell and hit his knee. Minutes later, he had difficulty extending his leg. After an examination and x-ray films, the diagnosis of a torn meniscus was made. Surgery was