Drastic and devastating

Drastic and devastating

The title of this post presents two important words from the medical dictionary. “drastic” can be first seen in the homeostasis introduction to medical physiology course. It emphasizes the lack of adaptive and accommodative responses to sudden and strong changes in the environment. In such conditions the outcome can be quite damaging or even fatal. The word “devastating” can be found in the pathology essays such as those changes due to severe infections and it usually concerns a local pathological change, e.g. necrosis. Though the two words may originally concern natural events in the environment, they may provide clues to medical care and case evaluation.

In medical practice the care-giver should avoid harsh interventions in terms of course and dose. The treatment may be better doing when it is decent and incremental (opposite to drastic). That view in the medical care – in some situations – entails ‘partial correction’ of the concerned disorder as”rapid*” ‘full correction’ may bring about quite unwanted or even fatal hazard. It is always wise to have an overall vision of the medical case with top-to-bottom estimate so that such extreme flip-flops can be better appreciated and avoided. The treatment should be both problem- and patient-tailored. As the body’s reserves to accommodate changes (temperature, water, food, etc.) is limited and varying from time to time one should be careful not to be too rush or too slow.

By the way, the medical opposite of devastating can be ‘mild’ or ‘trivial’.

Take-home massage:

1- Be decent, systematic, and incremental.

2- Observe well.

3- Be open-minded, generous and evolution-ready.

4- Make your expectations as modest and small as you can.

 ——————–

* Suggested steps of management could be:

1- Reverse the current event.

2- Restore/establish base line.

3- Treat residual illness.

 

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