Physician Nexus


Author:  Barron H. Lerner, PhD, MD


Barron H. Lerner is the Angelica Berrie-Gold Foundation Professor of Medicine and Public Health at Columbia University’s College of Physicians & Surgeons and the Mailman School of Public Health.


According to the author,   "Must doctors follow their own advice?


The issue often comes up when the obese doctor or the doctor who smokes advises a patient to lose weight or stop smoking. But I recently got to ponder the issue more personally when the severe pain of a kidney stone hit. Despite the extreme discomfort, I continued to work. But would I advise my patients to do the same? 


The pain of kidney stones is distinctive because it is excruciating yet intermittent. A mixture of salts and minerals, stones form in the kidneys of susceptible individuals and often stay put, causing no symptoms. But they can cause severe pain — as severe as that associated with childbirth — when the body decides to send them out of the kidney and into the long, thin ureters that connect with the bladder."


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