Post Archives

Drs. Lawrence Chow and Rose Hatala
May 6, 2020

Serious Illness Conversations in the Time of COVID-19

In the era of the COVID-19 pandemic, our most vulnerable patients (the elderly and those with chronic illnesses) are disproportionately at the highest risk of mortality. In this difficult and chaotic time, it's more important than ever that we maintain a humanistic approach to care. This involves keeping the patient, and their values and preferences, front and center in our care. read more...

Drs. Bruce Hobson, Daniel Ngui, Christie Newton, Shirley Sze and Steve Wong
April 14, 2020

Evolving in the era of COVID-19

You are not alone in this difficult time. It’s OK to feel like you are struggling, frustrated and/or anxious, everyone is. You can get help for personal health issues, workflow problems, staffing concerns, financial difficulties, clinical dilemmas, and technology challenges. You can do this; we can all do this… together. read more...

Tandi Wilkinson MD CCFP-EM
April 1, 2020

Taking care of each other during COVID-19 – peer support for physicians

I conducted a study examining effective peer support in rural Canadian physicians. (Spoiler alert: those who have had good peer support say it is essential to their career in medicine.) Here is what I am doing now to ensure I, and my team, can manage through this unprecedented time at work. read more...

Dr. Janet McKeown
March 11, 2020

Government Assistance Forms: Do they leave you bewildered?

Government Assistance: Health Resources and Forms tool has helped me understand assistance with a more organized approach. It has helped me access information quickly and it has helped me be more knowledgeable about billing provincially, federally and privately. It is also an efficient tool to use in a teaching environment to help learners better understand government assistance. read more...

Dr. Susan Woolhouse
February 26, 2020

Preparing children for the medically assisted death of a loved one

My past experiences during my palliative care rotations reassured me that children could benefit from bearing witness to a loved one’s death. Why would MAID be any different? I set out to learn more about how children grieve and ways in which I could support children through the dying of a loved one seeking MAID. read more...

Dr. Mary V. Seeman
February 5, 2020

Practice tip: medication-induced stuttering in psychiatric patients

Fellow psychiatrists often ask whether their patients with schizophrenia are aging prematurely. They point to the fact that several of their patients seem slowed down, forgetful, fidgety, and that they garble their words and stutter. These are, of course, all side effects of antipsychotic medication. read more...

Clarrisa Wallace, Sue Mills and Fahreen Dossa
January 24, 2020

Learning from each other: A Peer Coaching Program

In preparation for teaching a Clinical Skills session, we diligently reviewed the tutor guide and video ahead of time.  However, we sometimes wondered how other teachers were translating the advice from the guide into their teaching. read more...

Dr. Breay Paty
January 21, 2020

Appropriate testosterone testing for male hypogonadism

The therapeutic use of testosterone has increased dramatically in the last two decades. The reasons for this appear to be increased frequency of testing and marketing of testosterone replacement for middle-aged and older men. While men with unequivocally low testosterone levels usually benefit from hormone replacement, the risk/benefit ratio for men with equivocal ("borderline") levels is not clear, especially men who desire fertility. read more...

Dr. Dan Bilsker
January 8, 2020

Hiding in plain sight: men’s mental health

It is well-known that men die on average 3-4 years before women - but why? We identified three main factors contributing to Years of Life Lost by men compared to women: cardiovascular disease, suicide, and motor vehicle accidents. As a psychologist, I was intrigued by the substantial contribution of suicide. read more...

Dr. Steve Wong
December 18, 2019

Letter from the editor

This week’s cover picture is me with Piper, the puppy that changed my practice. We got a puppy this year that made me take time to go for walks with my wife in the mornings before work and spend more mindful downtime with the family. She turned out to be a great balancer to the stress and bustle of an over-scheduled professional life. read more...

Dr. Lisa Nakajima
December 4, 2019

Use of endometrial aspirators as a uterine sound for IUD insertion

One of the risks of IUD insertion includes perforation of the uterus. Although uterine perforation is relatively uncommon and often does not cause long-term harm, it does increase the risk of unplanned pregnancy and often requires surgery. I have chosen to use endometrial aspirators that are commonly used for endometrial biopsy sampling as a sound for IUD insertions, instead of the traditional metal sounds. read more...

Trana Hussaini Pharm D and Eric M. Yoshida MD FRCPC
November 13, 2019

You too can help eliminate Hepatitis C by 2030

For the first time, since the identification of hepatitis C virus, the goal of HCV elimination is a tangible and achievable target mainly due to the availability of highly efficacious and well tolerated DAA regimens. read more...

Dr. Alice S Chang, Dr. Michael J Diamant, Dr. Margot K Davis, and Dr. Krishnan Ramanathan
October 30, 2019

New insight into “HFpEF” – cardiac amyloid no longer a zebra diagnosis?

Cardiac amyloidosis (CA) is an infiltrative disease that is being increasingly identified in those with HFpEF. Amyloidosis is a group of heterogeneous disorders characterized by the deposition of misfolded protein that aggregates into fibrils, affecting multiple organs including the heart, neural tissues, kidneys, and the gastrointestinal tract. read more...

Dr. Eileen Murray
October 16, 2019

Using topical corticosteroids safely and effectively

Topical corticosteroids are the most frequently used topical medications for treating skin diseases. They are cheap, extremely efficacious and almost completely free of side effects when used appropriately. read more...

Dr. Alisa Lipson
September 25, 2019

“Girls on the Spectrum”: Autistic Spectrum Disorder in Girls

Now in 2019, we are learning that the incidence in girls is higher than previously thought. The girls are catching up to the boys. What is that about? Turns out that the girls are better at hiding their disability but it is there. So, we have to look harder. read more...

Dr. Amin Javer
September 11, 2019

Sinusitis: appropriate diagnosis and management

Sinusitis is a commonly encountered condition for the Canadian family physician. Chronic sinusitis has worse quality of life scores than COPD, CHF or angina. The total cost of diagnosing and treating sinusitis remains one of the most expensive chronic disorders experienced by the North American population and continues to increase yearly. read more...

Dr. Tahmeena Ali
August 21, 2019

ACEs (Adverse Childhood Experiences): One Family Physician’s Experience

I now ask all patients, young and old, new to my practice and established for years, male and female, to complete an ACEs questionnaire in my clinic. I garner a new level of respect for my patients' resilience and for the ongoing turmoil many of my young patients face. I make finding supports for these young vulnerable patients one of my top priorities—as important as a referral to a specialist or for diagnostic imaging. read more...

Dr. Miguel Imperial
July 30, 2019

Practice Tip: Cutaneous larva migrans

Once I diagnose a patient with CLM based on a compatible travel history and characteristic serpiginous rash, I continue to treat the itch and inflammatory symptoms symptomatically if indicated, but I am able to much more readily offer systemic therapy with ivermectin since it no longer requires a Health Canada Special Access application. read more...