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My medical student and residency years

Recently I have been looking back over my years of practice and how I got started in medicine  and different lessons that I have learned. I thought it might be interesting to share some of these with you via some short blogs.


I remember as both a medical student and as a resident,  as I would rotate onto certain services,  I would be warned by my fellow medical students and residents about what to expect. One such warning came as I prepared to rotate through pediatrics initially as a medical student but then later as a resident. I was told that I should prepare to be “sicker than I’ve ever been in my life”. It was true. I was.  I had not been exposed in a long time to all the runny noses, coughs, nausea, vomiting, flu, etc., so I seemed to “catch everything”.


When I started practice and started taking care of teachers and having watched members of my family become teachers, I saw that the same is true for them. Once they got in the classroom and were exposed to sick children and their childhood diseases, they got sicker than they could ever remember being.


The “amazing” thing was, that we got over it. Once we were exposed,  we built up a type of immunity and seldom were we sick again. I found this to be true ( so far)  for much of my 40 years in practice. One thing that doesn’t make sense this day and age is that the old tried-and-true method of building immunity has been thrown by the wayside. Instead of practicing things that we’ve done for the past century such as washing our hands and trying not to get into the face of someone who’s sick,  now we seem to think that the new way of isolating everyone from everything and everybody is a way to stay healthy. Last time I checked our bodies do not work that way. We must develop immunity on our own.


I keep hearing almost everyone say that we will “get back to normal after we have a vaccine”. I’m not going to get in to that today but suffice it to say that in looking at most things that we immunize against, our body can usually develop an immunity that lasts almost a lifetime after exposure whereas the immunity given by the “shots” is often times short-lived and requires more and more “shots”.  Dr. P

Robert W. Patterson MD ND Founder of Back to Basics Medical Practice who has practiced family medicine for 40 years and dedicated his professional life to serving his patients ( and not the insurance companies)

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