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June 16, 2008

Vincent's Gift

Arch Surg. 2008;143(6):531-532. doi:10.1001/archsurg.143.6.531

Six months after I (M.E.Z.) became a chairman and program director in 2001, the new interns started our surgical program. While the first day went smoothly, on the second day all hell broke loose. One intern, a brilliant medical student who recently moved from another state, did not show up to work. The chief residents were frantic about his whereabouts. Their concerns were well founded; he was found at home, in the midst of a psychotic break, completely nonfunctional. We put in action a plan to get him the care he needed; he was hospitalized, was later released, and ultimately left our program and went back home. He was treated and subsequently changed specialty—he is still in the medical field.