PREPARED PATIENT BLOG

Patients and experts explore what it takes to find good health care and make the most of it.

1st Person posts spotlight a patient’s or caregiver’s health care experience.


1st Person: Small Steps: Adapting to New Technology for Better Health

First Person | January 12, 2012
Joan Reder, a person with diabetes, spends her days working as a medical transcriptionist, so you might assume she'd be pretty comfortable with anything involving medicine. But recently, the 59 year-old was faced with the daunting prospect of converting from her familiar daily insulin injections to an insulin pump, which would continuously monitor her blood glucose and deliver insulin to her body when needed.

1st Person: Acute Pain: Sudden Impact

First Person | December 30, 2011
Dr. Jan Adams has had more than her share of painful experiences. A retired general practitioner and mother of two who practiced 'womb-to-tomb' medicine, she conducted humanitarian work around the world, notably with medical clown Patch Adams (no relation).

1st Person: Pain: a Constant Companion

First Person | December 29, 2011
Teresa Shaffer has suffered from chronic pain from degenerative joint disease since she underwent six months of bedrest during her third pregnancy.

1st Person: Cancer Diagnosis Can't Squash His Spirit

First Person | December 28, 2011
Twelve years ago, Syd Ball's local urologist told him that prostate-removal surgery and radiation therapy were his only options to treat his early stage prostate cancer. After a second opinion from a urologic oncologist at Johns Hopkins University, Syd participated in active surveillance to avoid the serious side effects associated with treating prostate cancer.

1st Person: After Years of Treatment, a Time to Wait

First Person | December 28, 2011
For many freshmen, the first year of college is devoted to classes, work and socializing, with little thought given to health or longevity. But for Nikkie Hartmann, a Chicago-based public relations professional, the start of her college career also marked the start of 14 years of dealing with cancer.

1st Person: At 98, Bob Stewart Would Rather Be Dancing

First Person | December 27, 2011
Bob Stewart, who will turn 99 this May, began taking supplements in 2000, when he was in his late 80s. The retired podiatrist is also a strong believer in keeping active. He takes exercise classes at least three times a week and participates in numerous community activities, including a local men's chorus.

1st Person: Hospice, My Husband and Me

First Person | December 26, 2011
As Jerome Rafferty, diagnosed with a progressive form of dementia and an incurable, antibiotic-resistant infection, became more ill, his wife, Renata Rafferty, used hospice services at home initially to assist her in caring for him.

1st Person: My Post-Op Problems Were Brushed Aside

First Person | December 15, 2011
Instead of enjoying a full recovery, Herminia Briones experienced distressing new symptoms the year following her knee-replacement surgery.

1st Person: Are Doctor Ratings Sites Useful?

First Person | November 15, 2011
When it came time for Jennifer Stevens, an Omaha, Nebraska resident and mother of two, to find an obstetrician for her first baby, she was faced with a dilemma.

1st Person: The ICU: A Caregiver's Perspective

First Person | October 20, 2011
Erica Kosal's husband, Jim Young, has battled complications of chronic Lyme disease since his diagnosis in 2008. In 2010, Jim's hospitalization for respiratory problems took a turn for the worse, resulting in a 3-week ICU stay.

1st Person: Acute Pain: Sudden Impact

First Person | September 22, 2011
Dr. Jan Adams has had more than her share of painful experiences. A retired general practitioner and mother of two who practiced 'womb-to-tomb' medicine, she conducted humanitarian work around the world, notably with medical clown Patch Adams (no relation).

1st Person: Pain: a Constant Companion

First Person | July 19, 2011
Teresa Shaffer has suffered from chronic pain from degenerative joint disease since she underwent six months of bedrest during her third pregnancy.

1st Person: I Think So Too

First Person | July 19, 2011
Breast cancer survivor, Lisa Bonchek Adams, blogs about life-changing events including a cancer diagnosis, the sudden death of a family member, and having a child with medical challenges. She combines medical, psychological, and sociological viewpoints to these and other topics. You can read this post and follow her at LisaBAdams.com.

1st Person: You Can Do This

First Person | June 29, 2011
With over 60 You Can Do This videos collected so far, diabetic Kim Vlasnik of Texting My Pancreas uses YouTube to encourage and support people with diabetes.

1st Person: Cancer Diagnosis Can't Squash His Spirit

First Person | June 6, 2011
Twelve years ago, Syd Ball's local urologist told him that prostate-removal surgery and radiation therapy were his only options to treat his early stage prostate cancer. After a second opinion from a urologic oncologist at Johns Hopkins University, Syd participated in active surveillance to avoid the serious side effects associated with treating prostate cancer.

1st Person: After Years of Treatment, a Time to Wait

First Person | June 6, 2011
For many freshmen, the first year of college is devoted to classes, work and socializing, with little thought given to health or longevity. But for Nikkie Hartmann, a Chicago-based public relations professional, the start of her college career also marked the start of 14 years of dealing with cancer.

1st Person: My Epidemic

First Person | April 18, 2011
Journalist Meg Heckman becomes the source when she shares her experience of living with hepatitis C. She says, The worst thing about having hep C isn't the disease or symptoms, it's the way others perceive you when they find out you have it. Watch this video, which was also featured on the Association of Health Care Journalists Covering Health blog and Stanford's Scope medical blog. Meg's six part 'My Epidemic' series was originally featured in the Concord Monitor.

1st Person: At 98, Bob Stewart Would Rather Be Dancing

First Person | April 5, 2011
Bob Stewart, who will turn 99 this May, began taking supplements in 2000, when he was in his late 80s. The retired podiatrist is also a strong believer in keeping active. He takes exercise classes at least three times a week and participates in numerous community activities, including a local men's chorus.

1st Person: Hospice, My Husband and Me

First Person | March 10, 2011
As Jerome Rafferty, diagnosed with a progressive form of dementia and an incurable, antibiotic-resistant infection, became more ill, his wife, Renata Rafferty, used hospice services at home initially to assist her in caring for him.

1st Person: Reference Range- A Video Poem On What 'Normal' Means

First Person | February 17, 2011
A nurse in practice for thirty-five years, Veneta Masson's evocative video poem, Reference Range, speaks from both her personal and professional experiences with health care. Dealing with test results and diagnostic technology, Veneta wonders, "Is it normal, you ask. Normal's a shell game you seldom win."

1st Person: Talking about Health Care

First Person | January 31, 2011
Through poetry, art and music, people describe and reflect on their experiences with health care. In this Def Poetry Jam video, Thea Monyee and GaKnew Rowel tell about the birth of their daughter.