rural Vermont, am the town health officer, and make house calls. I, too, have babies pee on me. On some days, I give as much medical advice at the post office and local lunch counter as I do at the office. And the best part is that I, too, find myself with front-row seats for the births, deaths, and all the adventures in between that life throws at us.
Stephen H. Genereaux, M.D.
Wells River, Vt.
Genereaux is the medical director of Little Rivers Health Care, Inc., a Federally Qualified Health Center with offices in Bradford, East Corinth, and Wells River, Vt.
A ringing endorsement
I was moved to write after reading about Jim Bell in the Spring issue of Dartmouth Medicine (Bell shared the effect that undergoing cardiac surgery has had on his teaching and practice of cardiology, in a feature titled "The Other Side of the Stethoscope".)
Dr. Bell was my first attending on my first internal medicine rotation when I was a medical student. He was later the attending for my subinternship and my VA rotations as an intern, a second- and third-year year resident, and both years as a cardiology fellow.
Now, 27 years after graduation and 23 years after starting practice as a cardiologist, I often find myself remembering the lessons I learned from Jim. Most of all, it is listening—not just to patients' words but to their emotions, facial expressions, and body language. I learned from him how important it is to make a human connection with those we care for, and I try to practice that every day. This, I find, is what helps me cope with the rigors of caring for patients and families as they attempt to deal with the unfathomable and often tragic situations that life throws their way.
It's hard to believe that Dr. Bell could become an even better doctor than he always was. I regret not being able to see him when I was at DMS for my reunion in
2005; he was and will always remain a steadfast role model and good friend.
Kathy Ryman Dube, M.D.
DMS '80, DHMC Housestaff and Fellow '80-85
Dube is a cardiologist at Kaiser Permanente of Woodland Hills, Calif.
Interest from afar
The article in your Fall 2004 issue about Basil O'Connor mentions the regrettable fact that there is no book about the "Man in the Middle," as your article is titled. (O'Connor, a 1912 Dartmouth College graduate, was instrumental in the development of the polio vaccine.)
Furthermore, the Englishlanguage edition of Wikipedia had no article on O'Connor,
although the German edition of Wikipedia did have one. So I started creating an English article, mainly by translating the German one.
It is also mentioned hardly anywhere that O'Connor is one of only two nonscientists (together with FDR) included in the Polio Hall of Fame in Warm Springs, Ga.
My interest in O'Connor arose when I followed traces of Jakob Heine, an orthopaedist who wrote the first clinical report of poliomyelitis and who was born in Lauterbach, Germany, where I live. Heine is also among those included in the Polio Hall of Fame, along with 14 other polio experts.
It was in searching for more information about O'Connor that I came across your article. (And in doing so, I also found and subscribed to your podcasts, which contain interesting information on medical subjects.)
I am 70 years old and was a teacher of English and history at a German gymnasium (high school) in Schramberg. I am interested in all kinds of subjects, especially local history and notable people from here who deserve attention.
Do you happen to know O'Connor's place of death so I can add that to his Wikipedia entry? Many thanks.
According to Dartmouth's alumni records, Basil O'Connor died (in 1972) in Phoenix, Ariz.—a fact Hekler has now added to O'Connor's Wikipedia entry. O'Connor is pictured in the spread above to the left—he's on the lower right with a young polio patient; to his left is his former law partner Franklin Delano Roosevelt, and above him is polio vaccine pioneer Jonas Salk.
Article was right on
The article by Jerome Groopman, M.D., "The Right Questions" was enlightening and enjoyable. As a practicing internist and clinical teacher for 33 years, now retired, I found that the medical history was by far the most important factor in