Ian Williams: Graphic Medicine: Visualising the Stigma of Illness: Ian Williams

The contribution of the medium of comics (referred to in the plural to denote both the physical printed object and the attendant philosophy) to medical discourse has begun, over the past few of years, to be explored by academics interested in illness narrative, patient experience and healthcare education. Autobiographical comics and graphic novels authored by […]

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James Poskett: Abandoning disease

Imagine you are diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. Your weight loss, lethargy and occasionally-blurred vision are all finally explained and your treatment, regular injections of insulin, prescribed. A month later you go back to your doctor. They open their clinical handbook, flick through the index and, rather unfortunately, ‘diabetes’ has been omitted from the latest […]

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Ayesha Ahmad: The Story of Existence – Reflections on the 14th International Philosophy and Psychiatry Conference, Gothenburg.

Can you treat a person’s story? At present, amid the setting of the 14th International Philosophy and Psychiatry conference in Gothenburg, Sweden, I am not alone in trying to peer through the looking-glass, searching for the heart of the humanity in medicine, and for a treasure, that will surely tell us what we should find […]

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James Poskett: Retrospective diagnosis – it’s not (all) bad

Did Julius Caesar suffer from epilepsy? Was Mad King George mad? Did Tutankhamun have Klippel-Feil syndrome? Retrospective diagnosis, particularly of notable historical figures, makes me feel uneasy. For one, it seems to fly in the face of contemporary historiography in which diseases are recognised as influenced by the social, historical and linguistic context. Even the […]

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James Poskett: Storytelling in the theatre

Telling the Patient’s Story details a theatre company’s attempts to develop medical students’ case presentation skills. Workshops, covering everything from improvisation, personal monologues and body language, had a marked effect on the students, with all participants agreeing that the training improved their delivery of patient histories. http://mh.bmj.com/content/37/1/18.abstract So, the arts and humanities can help medical […]

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Ayesha Ahmad: On ‘Mask:Mirror:Membrane’, an exhibition by Deborah Padfield

A recent viewing at the Menier Gallery of Deborah Padfield’s ‘Mask: Mirror: Membrane’ exhibition of images produced from experiences of facial pain, plunged my own experience into that of the perceiver of pain. In collaboration with Professor Joanna Zakrzewska, facial pain patients, and clinicians from UniversityCollege London Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Deborah Padfield asked an […]

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