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My FM Story

Mark Dressner, MD, FAAFP


One of my favorite stories is from residency showing ... it shows that it is not the medications but the relationship that drives better care. I was caring for a patient who was normally seen by faculty. She was having chest pain so bad that all she would do was sit on the couch all day. Her chest pain had previously been diagnosed as GERD. Through quick testing we found that it actually was her heart. She was admitted and had a procedure that resulted in her being chest pain-free. After a few follow-up visits, I found out she was still frightened and spent most of her time still sitting on her couch. She and her husband came in for an appointment shortly before February 14. I had them promise that they would do whatever I wrote on the prescription pad. I wrote, "Go out to dinner with your husband for Valentine's Day." They both laughed. She said she would. This was her first time going out doing something social. As I was finishing residency they came in to give me a card and say good-bye. She was was dressed very nicely. They excitedly told me about the RV they had just bought and their plans to travel around the country. I was so pleased that all it took was a written prescription that did not involve any type of medication.