Tired Doctor

Tired Doctor

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By Dr Irwin Lim, Rheumatologist

I work in a private clinic, seeing patients. Roughly 7-8 sessions a week. Each session lasting 4 hours usually filled with patients back-to-back (the rest of my week is used fulfilling directorial duties).

It might not sound like hard work but I often feel fatigued at the end of the week. Less energetic and definitely, much less patient.

In a specialty like rheumatology, patients come with complaints. Pain. Inability to do something. Anxiety over a new diagnosis or an abnormal test.

There's a lot to process and a lot to explain. Patience is not my strong suit, and that's a problem when I start to tire of the clinic. Compassion wanes.

I'm sure I'm not the only rheumatologist who feels this.

I marvel at some colleagues who work much longer hours, at a faster pace.

This isn't meant to be an excuse for poor service from your rheumatologist. And this of course does not compare to the problems my patients face.

But it does affect how well I provide solutions.

The last week away. A necessary break to again face the hustle of the clinic.

Dr Irwin Lim is a rheumatologist and a director of BJC Health. You should follow him on twitter here.
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