Andrea has been an obstetrician/gynecologist in the Metro Detroit area for nearly 25 years. Through her many years in women's health, she has shared in countless intimate moments of her patients, and shared in their joys, heartaches, secrets, losses and victories. In her writing, she captures the human side of medicine and what doctors think and feel in caring for patients. She has documented her stories on her blog www.secretlifeofobgyn.com. She has been a contributor in Intima, A Journal of Narrative Medicine and Pulse, Voices From the Heart of Medicine. Andrea is also a guest rotating blogger on KevinMD and Doximity. Andrea holds a Doctorate of Medicine (M.D.) from Wayne State University School of Medicine. She is also board certified in obstetrics and gynecology and a fellow of ACOG (American College of OB/GYN).
Giving birth and running a marathon. They are two seemingly different entities but have many similarities. The inevitable pain, the highs, the lows, the feeling that you may falter or can’t survive the pain and, in the midst of it all, that you will never do it again…but then you do.
Missed abortion. Threatened abortion. Incomplete abortion. Spontaneous abortion. Septic abortion. Inevitable abortion. These are medical terms for the failure or potential failure of a pregnancy. These terms also more accurately describe the physical process that is happening, rather than the generic term “miscarriage.”
Recently, someone close to me was diagnosed with cancer. Due to a series of missed phone calls on both sides, he had not heard the results of his biopsy prior to his follow up appointment. When his young doctor walked in, he started with “so you know you have cancer, right?” I just wanted to scream “what the hell!” when hearing this story. It is never easy to give someone bad news, but this obviously was not the way to do it.
Walking through the dark construction zone of my now demolished kitchen, I made my way to the garage and out into the still, hot, humid July night. The air felt so thick, it was hard to breathe. At 1 am I was headed to the hospital for a patient that just arrived in active labor. On the drive in, I had the air conditioner blasting to cool off the car and to wake the slumber from my head. By the time I reached the bright lights of the hospital 20 minutes later, I was fully awake. It was time to work.