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How the pain of unexpected and tragic deaths lingers with physicians

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How the pain of unexpected and tragic deaths lingers with physicians

"The memory of these patients, and their families’ utter anguish, stays with me. There was nothing I could have done to save them, nothing I did wrong. I’ve lost sleep,…
February 20, 2021

How the pain of unexpected and tragic deaths lingers with physicians

“The memory of these patients, and their families’ utter anguish, stays with me. There was nothing I could have done to save them, nothing I did wrong. I’ve lost sleep, questioned my career choice, and sought mental health counseling to manage the stress of their loss. But the pain of their unexpected and tragic deaths lingers, like the torn knee tendon that heals but still throbs. I can walk on it, but it will occasionally start to ache—a reminder of trauma.”

Shira Shiloah is an anesthesiologist and can be reached on Twitter @ShiraShiloahMD. She can be reached at her self-titled site, Shira Shiloah, MD.

She shares her story and discusses her KevinMD article, “Second victim syndrome: The pain of unexpected and tragic deaths lingers with physicians.” (https://www.kevinmd.com/blog/2020/12/second-victim-syndrome-the-pain-of-unexpected-and-tragic-deaths-lingers-with-physicians.html)

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