Los Angeles Times: Doctors talk shop on medical blogs

Yrs. Trly, KevinMD, OBGynKenobi and Notes from Dr RW are all mentioned.  I’ll disagree mildly (I think it’s more complicated than that) with the last sentence, but the reast is pretty good.

Los Angeles Times: Doctors talk shop on medical blogs

Web posts offer insight into the profession, but also raise patient privacy issues.
By Melissa Healy
Los Angeles Times Staff Writer

August 4, 2008

For physicians of a certain age, the weekly teaching session known as grand rounds is a ritual steeped in formality and tradition. Presided over by the profession’s graybeards, grand rounds are attended with white coats on and clinical details in hand.

Here, young physicians learn to accept their elders’ old-school admonishments with reverence and humility.

Grand rounds on the Internet, however, is another thing altogether. A weekly compilation of the Internet’s best medical blog postings, it is part classroom, part locker room, part group therapy session and part office party — a free-wheeling collection of rants, shop talk, case studies and learned commentary along with the occasional recipe, movie review or vacation slide show…

I’m always interested that I sound a little smarter in interviews than I do in actuality.  That’s a good thing.


  1. I think of blogs like mine as sort of the nurse who has all the good stories at the cocktail party. We’re not in the military nor CIA nor FBI working on some top secret mission, and our lips aren’t supposed to be sealed as to the day-to-day happenings and frustrations on our job. This is stuff that happens to US too; the patient isn’t the sole owner of the encounter. The never-ending streams of non-emergencies affect everyone in the US. We have a right to free speech just like everyone else, but we just can’t make it so it would be easy for the casual blog visitor (nor cocktail party attendee) to link the patient to the encounter.

    Obviously, you are “semi-anonymous”, so you have to be more careful than someone who doesn’t give any details about where they work or whatever. I hate articles that make it seem like blogging is on the cusp of a HIPAA violation. It is not for the overwhelming majority of bloggers. Blogging is healthy and makes me a far better nurse; my job satisfaction is through the roof, and I’ve been inspired to do things like take on a leadership role in my hospital to improve upon patient care. Without blogging, doctors would be a jerks to me or order a bunch of stupid tests day after day, and I’d have to hold it inside and let it eat away at my soul. Now I get to turn it into something entertaining!

  2. That was a good article; the author obviously did her research.

    With continued reverence and humility,


  3. As far as the nice things about blogs, such as your blog, I don’t disagree. The criticism of medical blogging is a different story, supported by horribly flawed research.

    I started writing a comment, by my diarrhea of the keyboard took over. This study was seriously flawed, so I wrote about it. Blogging and Privacy and Competition for Dr. Deborah Peel