Saturday, December 24, 2005

"Bittersweet season"

On the last office day before Christmas, Medpundit's patient is suicidal. Where are the psychiatrists? I'll tell you where I was yesterday: in my office, working. But I saw no one who was suicidal. I spent hours trying to contact patients with abnormal lab test results. It might have been better if Sydney and I had switched places...

Suicides don't actually peak in December, as Maria notes in the comments. MSM seems to be catching on to this fact, according to the Annenberg Public Policy Center. But suicidal patients are challenging for physicians in any season. More on this problem here.


Blogger Joel said...

Thank you for being there -- on behalf of those of my kind who don't think to say thank you. Believe me: they appreciate it.

6:05 PM  
Blogger Fallen Angels said... is appreciated, once the thinking clears.

10:59 PM  
Blogger Michael Rack, MD said...

I've heard that suicides tend to peak in May, coincidentally the time of the American Psychiatric Association annual meeting. There is supposedly a smaller peak in October, around the time of the smaller APA meeting (the Institute for Psychiatric Services meeting). It has been (half-seriously) suggested that suicide rates increase when a patient's psychiatrist is on vacation at an APA meeting.

10:03 AM  
Blogger Joel said...

Maybe you should help them obtain a scholarship for the DBSA meetings that happen around the same time? :)

11:01 AM  

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