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In the Name of a ‘Like’

Dana Corriel MD poses the question of how far is too far, where it comes to doctors engaging and creating on social media.

In what world would the “dancing while performing surgery and filming it for a tik tok video” ever be ok (from a patient perspective)?

My reaction is in response to an article I read about a patient that was horrified to discover she had been filmed while sedated.

Both the plastic surgeon AND the anesthesiologist danced to the rhythm of a song, playing overhead, while the patient lay naked and exposed (albeit covered) in the operating room.

The patient further claims that she did not sign a waiver to the effect of giving permission for the recording. And quite honestly, even if she had, I’m not sure she could fully imagine the possibilities, or artistic direction that a tik tok could take, while she’s laying there, unconscious.

For reference, here’s the article which first caught my attention to this news story. And to be clear, I’m perfectly fine with dancing. It’s the ‘dancing while performing surgery’ bit that gets me. It doesn’t matter how amazing you are at multi-tasking. Don’t get near my limp and lifeless body, in whatever vulnerable position it’s in during whatever procedure I’m undergoing, with a scalpel (or any other surgical instrument, quite honestly), in hand.

Don’t think about the words of that tik tok song you’re about to dance to because, if I’m your patient, I want you thinking about proper cleaning procedure, or ensuring the incision area is draped and ready. I want you mapping out the vessels that lie in the way of what you’re about to dissect, or checking on the monitor to make sure that I’m alive while you’re doing it.

I don’t want you thinking about your next tik tok move because my life is literally in your hands and that is, quite honestly, NOT the time to be thinking about performing a tik tok.

 

I don't want you thinking about your next tik tok move (when you're performing surgery) because my life is literally in your hands and that is, quite honestly, NOT the time to be thinking about performing a tik tok. Click To Tweet

 

I’m trying to come up with feasible answers to my original question (on what in the world would make a patient agree to such a thing), but the only answers that come to mind are disturbing ones (each and every one):

– the patient is too intimidated to say no
– the patient doesn’t understand what they’re agreeing to, or what footage will be created
– the patient gets some incentive to agree (as in, the doctor agrees to reduce the cost of surgery in exchange for creating what essentially becomes social advertising content)

 

I’m trying to come up with feasible answers to my original question (on what in the world would make a patient agree to such a thing), but the only answers that come to mind are disturbing. Click To Tweet

 

It’s wrong.

And I think that we hit rock bottom, as a profession, when this kind of news hits the airwaves.

Doctors, I’m the first to advocate that we consider creating content online, to market our services. But I’m also the first to ask you to “curate”. And when I say curate, I mean think it through. We still need to DO NO HARM. And we still need to keep our patients, and their dignity, intact.

Create meaningful content, but stay professional when in professional settings.

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One Response

  1. Excellent call out to when SM and the need for likes has gone to far and our ethics are in dire need of an overhaul in medicine! It should always be about the patient snd any limelight the Dr receives should be humble and behind the scenes ! This is just sad ! OBGYN!

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