This May Hurt a Bit

This May Hurt a Bit

The intuitions, insights, and growing pains of a medical student

  • To the next steps

    To the next steps

    By Shara Yurkiewicz | December 15, 2014 |

    After deep reflection, I've made the difficult choice not to continue "This May Hurt a Bit" as part of the Scientific American blogs network under its new direction . My most recent blog post was in April. I graduated medical school in May. I began a one-year medical journalism fellowship at MedPage Today in July, where I have the honor of working alongside some very talented journalists. […]

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  • Post-operative check

    By Shara Yurkiewicz | April 7, 2014 |

    It’s okay that you don’t remember me. My name is Shara, and I’m part of the surgical team. I’m checking to see how you’re doing after your surgery. Do you know where you are right now? Actually, you’re in the hospital. You had surgery a few hours ago, for a broken hip. […]

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  • Surfacing


    By Shara Yurkiewicz | February 17, 2014 |

    There was a very large lesion in his left frontal lobe, and no one knew what it was. He had been admitted earlier that day, after a neighbor found him in the hallway, confused and covered in urine.  Now he sat in his bed quietly, while we stared at his brain and the bright spot that didn't quite resemble something. […]

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  • Gut decisions

    By Shara Yurkiewicz | October 1, 2013 |

    On my second day of fourth year, I had to make a decision. “Mr. K would like Miralax,” read the nurse’s page.   A medical sub-internship, which a student completes in her fourth year, is designed to be an internship with training wheels. […]

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  • Asymmetry

    By Shara Yurkiewicz | July 9, 2013 |

    We met on my birthday and your age trailed mine by a week. Your past medical history bare, you let me see you sick. You let me feel the margins of your spleen, your sexual history, your confusion over why this and why you and what now and what next. […]

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  • "Good patients" cover their emotional cracks

    By Shara Yurkiewicz | March 13, 2013 |

    When we told the patient and his family that the mass in his lung was highly concerning for cancer, he didn't say anything. His daughter asked about his symptoms. His son-in-law asked when and how he could get a definitive diagnosis. His wife asked when he could go home. […]

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  • Unkept Promises

    By Shara Yurkiewicz | February 9, 2013 |

    “Your hands feel like velvet,” the 94-year-old woman told me as I pushed on her abdomen in the emergency department on a Friday night. “That’s the nicest thing anyone’s said to me all day,” I told her. “That’s pretty sad,” she said, and her abdomen quivered as she suppressed a laugh. […]

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  • An Introduction: Sharing Stories with Strangers

    By Shara Yurkiewicz | January 17, 2013 |

    “I woke up forty days ago,” began a 922-word email sent to me shortly after I shared a story about a demented patient continually waking up to discover that he had had a leg amputation.  I read it and re-read it, astounded by the story that was over twice as long as my original post. […]

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