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Unofficial Prognosis

Unofficial Prognosis

Perceptions and prescriptions of a medical student

From live animals to mannequins to human beings: can there ever be an ethical way to practice medical procedures?

The patient grimaced when she saw me. “What are you, sixteen or something?”I opened my mouth to answer but quickly stopped myself. Telling her I was twenty-two, I realized, would not come across as much more comforting.“Ilana is very good at this,” my phlebotomy instructor said, coming to my defense.My patient continued to look skeptical...

July 31, 2012 — Ilana Yurkiewicz

Lurkers, de-lurk! Who is reading this blog?

Today marks the one-year anniversary of the Scientific American Blog Network. Happy first birthday to us!To celebrate, we’ve decided to take a page from fantastic science writer and Discover Magazine blogger Ed Yong, who every year asks his readers: who are you?Since I joined the blog network in February, I’ve been thrilled with the readership and comments I’ve received, whether here, over email, or through some other online portal...

July 5, 2012 — Ilana Yurkiewicz

Stigmatizing illness, stigmatizing others

Her mother got diabetes because she didn’t exercise enough, and her father’s colon cancer was due to a lifetime of fatty foods. If only her sister had drunk more milk when she was younger, she wouldn’t be suffering from osteoporosis now.She had an explanation for everyone’s illnesses, except her own.Ms...

June 27, 2012 — Ilana Yurkiewicz


There’s an intersection in Boston outside one of my favorite places to eat. At the corner of two bustling streets is a white bike, chained in place, surrounded by flowers.

June 24, 2012 — Ilana Yurkiewicz

Writing about patients: lessons from first year

Three years ago, before fully committing myself to the idea of going into medicine, I decided to shadow in a genetics outpatient clinic to help give me a clue of what it was about.

May 16, 2012 — Ilana Yurkiewicz

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