In a compelling article called Are Some Diseases More Prestigious Than Others? the always-interesting medical historian Dr. Jan Henderson ran an overview ranking the prestige of a number of medical diseases. And WOOOO HOOOO, my heart sisters! We won! Those of us who have survived a myocardial infarction (heart attack) are right up there at the top. Studies from Norway report that the more highly ranked medical specialties and diseases all involve vital organs, and, let’s face it – what organ is more vital than our hearts?
I’ve had a keen – some might say obsessive – interest in the subject of medical misdiagnosis ever since a man with the letters M.D. after his name sent me home from the Emergency Department in mid-heart attack. I had just been misdiagnosed with acid reflux – despite presenting with textbook cardiac symptoms.
Texas author, artist and book industry journalist Melissa Mia Hall once wrote: “When I need help writing book reviews, my dog Daisy is always eager to lend a paw.” After trying to lift Daisy recently, Melissa felt an odd pain in her chest. She told her editor at Publishers Weekly that she had pulled a muscle. She later emailed a friend: