Sadiyya Sheik

Medical consent: Informed or not?

Have you ever consented to a medical procedure? Did you consider that to be an informed consent? Were you aware of the benefits, risks and complications of the procedure? Have you ever consented to a Blood Product transfusion? Were you told that the risk of contracting HIV is 1 in 2 million people? I attended…

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Why we’re losing the war against HIV

I assume that I will be hung, drawn and quartered for the insinuation of this post. As such, you are advised to read the following disclaimer. DISCLAIMER: What follows is an observation by the author of this post. These sentiments are by no means that of the medical community at large. Please feel free to…

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Six babies die at Charlotte Maxeke Hospital and no-one to blame. Was it an act of God?

Six babies died at Charlotte Maxeke Hospital in May. An investigation into the deaths found no-one liable despite the isolation of the norovirus which is known to be spread via contaminated hands. If there is no-one that can be blamed, are we then to believe that these deaths were an act of God? ↲ the…

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Occupational hazard

Employment is a risky thing. I don’t mean the possibility of being pink-slipped or the company liquidating or poisonous cafeteria-unknowns. In my line of work, showing up is a bloody hazard. I spent the better part of the last three weeks praying desperately for an HIV-negative result. Some light: I’m a medical intern. Most of…

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Burqa ban, just another form of oppression

Speaking about the ban on the burqa, Denis Ducarme, a Belgian Liberal Party MP said: “We are the first country to break through the chain that has kept countless women enslaved.” As noble as this may sound, I cannot say that I agree with his statement. First, how exactly does one go about liberating women…

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Would he have disclosed his status if it were positive?

I’ve been told recently about how bold and inspiring a move it was for President Jacob Zuma to disclose his HIV status to the nation. Though I agree that this action is warranted by the president of a country with the highest prevalence of HIV in the world and a definite step-up from the I…

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Channelling Holden Caulfield

I had quite the Holden Caulfield experience at a popular restaurant recently. Is it just me or are we fast becoming a race of phonies? This group of young people sitting at the table right next to us, phony girls with their hair all straightened and all, looking like bloody clones of each other. Sitting…

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Why wait for the maggots?

My eyesight is terrible. I really can not see well out my left eye, a congenital problem I am told. One that was not identified by the conglomeration of nurses who descended upon my primary school with their wooden spatulas and needle-and-syringe kits. But that’s another story for another time. Seriously though, I am not…

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Think dry

What is it about the festive season that makes people want to kill themselves and each other? Strange question, I know, but I spent the night of the 25th and early hours of the 26th December with the drunks and depressives at hospital in the casualty department. I could probably count on one hand the…

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Do you treat your doctors as well as they treat you?

There’s an aspect of medicine called family medicine. It’s the part medical students love to hate. It’s the touchy feely bit where we care (or at least pretend to) about the things that can’t really be treated with a pill. We’re concerned about the impact your job is having on your life, we wonder how…

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