Code Blue: Challenging Conventional Medical Education and Practice with Saray Stancic, MD: PYP 238

Dr Saray Stancic became an infectious disease specialist in response to the HIV and hepatitis C crisis of the 1980s and 90s. On October 11, 1995, the then-3rd year medical resident found a short nap window at 2am, and collapsed in fatigue in the on-call room of the hospital where she worked. When she was awakened for her next shift, Dr Stancic couldn't feel her legs. She was rushed to the ER, and an MRI revealed multiple sclerosis (MS) with multiple lesions in the brain and spinal cord. In addition to the neuropathy in her legs, it turned out that her kidneys were also failing. She was admitted to the hospital, given an IV steroid drip and a bunch of other medications. And just like that, a young, energetic, ambitious doctor was converted into a frightened, confused, dispirited patient. Read more »

Saying Goodbye to Lupus and Other Autoimmune Diseases with Brooke Goldner, MD: PYP 227

When Brooke Goldner, MD, was 16 years old, she was told by her doctors that she probably had about six months to live. Her lupus, a chronic autoimmune condition that commonly attacks joints and skin, had gone after her kidneys, and it didn't look like they (and she) could be saved. Thankfully, the weekly chemotherapy worked well enough to stomp on her immune system, and it gave her kidneys and the rest of her a break and allowed her to grow up and have a fairly normal life. Read more »