Sunday, April 15, 2018

Diagnosis: A New Series From The New York Times and Netflix - The New York Times

This week The New York Times Magazine is reintroducing a version of "Think Like a Doctor," the online column in which I told the story of a patient with mysterious symptoms — including posting some medical records and test results — and challenged readers to unravel the puzzle of that patient's illness and come up with a diagnosis. But this time, the stakes are higher. In that original column, which I wrote from 2011 to 2016, I already knew the final diagnosis, and I watched as readers commented and discussed the case on the site, finding their way to an answer, a suggested diagnosis. This time around, I will be presenting an unsolved case and asking our readers to do their best to actually help the patient.

Again, I will provide test results and other relevant medical data and will challenge you to think like a doctor and come up with a solution to the patient's illness. In posting these unsolved cases, we hope to leverage the knowledge and wisdom of this particular crowd — the readers of The New York Times — to make a difference in the life and well-being of someone in search of an answer, in search of a diagnosis.

Below you will find the case of a 23-year-old woman who has recurrent episodes of terrible pain in her muscles, along with urine the color of cola, often after exercising. Reader responses will be reviewed, and the most promising will be forwarded to the provider who is managing the patient's care. Updates on the patient's condition and diagnosis will be posted here as progress in the case is made, and each patient's story, along with input from readers, will be shared in the Diagnosis show on Netflix. O.K., let's get started.

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How Profiteers Lure Women Into Often-Unneeded Surgery - The New York Times

Jerri Plummer was at home in Arkansas, watching television with her three children, when a stranger called to warn that her life was in danger.

The caller identified herself only as Yolanda. She told Ms. Plummer that the vaginal mesh implant supporting her bladder was defective and needed to be removed. If Ms. Plummer didn't act quickly, the caller urged, she might die.

Ms. Plummer, 49, didn't ask many questions. Her implant was causing her discomfort, and she was impressed by how much Yolanda knew about her medical history. She was scared. "It was like I had a ticking time bomb inside of me," she said. Yolanda assured Ms. Plummer that all her expenses would be covered and that she would be set up with a lawyer to help her sue the mesh manufacturer, Boston Scientific.

Days later, court records show, Ms. Plummer was lying on an operating table in a medical office in a shopping mall in Orlando, Fla.

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