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Dr K K Aggarwal

Should doctors smile while talking to their patients?

By Dr K K Aggarwal
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Bhagavad Gita 2.10: tam uva ca hṛṣīkeśaḥ, prahasann iva bhārata, senayor ubhayor madhye, viṣīdantam idaḿ vacaḥ SYNONYMS: tam — unto him; uvāca — said; hṛṣīkeśaḥ — the master of the senses, Kṛṣṇa; prahasan — smiling; iva — like that; bhārata — O Dhṛtarāṣṭra, descendant of Bharata; senayoḥ — of the armies; ubhayoḥ — of both parties; madhye — between; viṣīdantam — unto the lamenting one; idam — the following; vacaḥ — words.

TRANSLATION: O descendant of Bharata, at that time Krishna, smiling, in the midst of both the armies, spoke the following words to the grief-stricken Arjuna. The answer comes in Bhagavad Gita, the first text book of counseling. When grief-ridden Arjuna approaches him, he starts his counseling in happy and smiling mood. Arjuna was grief-filled, sad and rebellious. Yet Krishna smiled.

The word in the Gita is prahasann, which means to smile before laughing (beginning to laugh). It was not a weak or full smile or a sarcastic grimace, but a very positive smile.

The grief of a patient halves if he sees his doctor smiling or the relatives see a smile on the face of the doctor coming out of the operation theater. In a situation like in Bhagavad Gita, it also gives confidence to the patient (Arjuna) that his doctor (Krishna) has understood his problem fully and has a solution to his problem. Buddha is also shown smiling and Goddess Kushmanda is also shown with a smiling face.

 

Should doctors smile while talking to their patients?

By Dr K K Aggarwal
Filed Under Spirituality - Science Behind Rituals | Tagged With: , , , | | Comments Off on Should doctors smile while talking to their patients?

Bhagavad Gita 2.10: tam uvāca hṛṣīkeśaḥ, prahasann iva bhārata, senayor ubhayor madhye, viṣīdantam idaḿ vacaḥ

SYNONYMS: tam — unto him; uvāca — said; hṛṣīkeśaḥ — the master of the senses, Kṛṣṇa; prahasan — smiling; iva — like that; bhārata — O Dhṛtarāṣṭra, descendant of Bharata; senayoḥ — of the armies; ubhayoḥ — of both parties; madhye — between; viṣīdantam — unto the lamenting one; idam — the following; vacaḥ — words.

TRANSLATION: O descendant of Bharata, at that time Krishna, smiling, in the midst of both the armies, spoke the following words to the grief-stricken Arjuna.

The answer comes in Bhagavad Gita, the first text book of counseling. When grief ridden Arjuna approaches him he starts his counseling in happy and smiling mood. Arjuna was grief-filled, sad and rebellious. Yet Krishna smiled. The word in the Gita is prahasann, which means to smile before laughing (beginning to laugh). It was not a weak or full smile or a sarcastic grimace, but a very positive smile. About half of the worry of a patient is relieved if he/she sees the doctor smiling or the relatives see a smile on the face of a doctor coming out of operation theater. In a situation similar to that in Bhagavad Gita, a smile also gives confidence to the patient (Arjuna) that his doctor (Krishna) has understood his problem fully and has a solution to his problem.

Buddha is also shown smiling and Goddess Kushmanda is also shown with a smiling face.

 

Should doctors smile while talking to their patients?

By Dr K K Aggarwal
Filed Under Spirituality - Science Behind Rituals | Tagged With: , , , | | Comments Off on Should doctors smile while talking to their patients?

Bhagavad Gita 2.10: tam uvāca hṛṣīkeśaḥ, prahasann iva bhārata, senayor ubhayor madhye, viṣīdantam idaḿ vacaḥ SYNONYMS: tam — unto him; uvāca — said; hṛṣīkeśaḥ — the master of the senses, Kṛṣṇa; prahasan — smiling; iva — like that; bhārata — O Dhṛtarāṣṭra, descendant of Bharata; senayoḥ — of the armies; ubhayoḥ — of both parties; madhye — between; viṣīdantam — unto the lamenting one; idam — the following; vacaḥ — words.

TRANSLATION: O descendant of Bharata, at that time Krishna, smiling, in the midst of both the armies, spoke the following words to the grief-stricken Arjuna.

The answer comes in Bhagavad Gita, the first text book of counseling. When grief ridden Arjuna approaches him he starts his counseling in happy and smiling mood. Arjuna was grief-filled, sad and rebellious. Yet Krishna smiled. The word in the Gita is prahasann, which means to smile before laughing (beginning to laugh). It was not a weak or full smile or a sarcastic grimace, but a very positive smile. About half of the worry of a patient is relieved if he/she sees the doctor smiling or the relatives see a smile on the face of a doctor coming out of operation theater. In a situation similar to that in Bhagavad Gita, a smile also gives confidence to the patient (Arjuna) that his doctor (Krishna) has understood his problem fully and has a solution to his problem. Buddha is also shown smiling and Goddess Kushmanda is also shown with a smiling face.

Should doctors be detached in dealing with their patients?

By Dr K K Aggarwal
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In dealing with patients, the traditional Patient–Doctor relationship model has been that doctor should remain cool, calm and collected at all times.


The doctor’s approach needs to be strictly scientific, logical, objective, methodical precise and dispassionate. This has been the model since the era of William Osler, the father of modern medicine. The term used is imperturbability, which means coolness and presence of mind under all circumstances.

Osler said a rare and precious gift to doctor is right of detachment. The right of detachment insulates the doctors and protects them from powerful emotions that patients display in their presence like anger, frustration, grief, rage and bewilderment. It also insulates patients from the rolling emotions that doctors may at times feel towards them.

However, a detached attitude also insulates doctors from empathizing with patients. A detached doctor may talk in a language that is over patient’s head.

Detachment is not like a light switch that you can turn on and off to suit the situation. Detachment as a practice cannot be in isolation if it becomes your personal style of distracting from the world, it may not be just for the patients but also from your colleague, family friends and even yourself.

I recall when I joined by hospital, the first lesson given to me by my boss was not to get unduly attached with patients. As part of etiquettes, we were taught not to socialize with patients. Even today the new American Guidelines talk that doctors should not socialize with their patients on social media including Facebook. Even doctors are human beings and their personal life should not be known to the patients. As far as lawsuits are concerned, it is equally true that known patients file a lawsuit much more than unknown people because over a period of time they know your weakness. One should learn to empathize with the patients and yet be detached from its results. Doctors who follow Bhagawad Gita understand this concept very well.

Should doctors detach themselves?

By Dr K K Aggarwal
Filed Under Spirituality - Science Behind Rituals | Tagged With: , , | | Comments Off on Should doctors detach themselves?

In dealing with patients, the traditional Patient–Doctor relationship model has been that doctor should remain cool, calm and collected at all times.

The doctor’s approach needs to be strictly scientific, logical, objective, methodical precise and dispassionate. This has been the model since the era of William Osler, the father of modern medicine. The term used is imperturbability, which means coolness and presence of mind under all circumstances.

Osler said a rare and precious gift to doctor is right of detachment. The right of detachment insulates the doctors and protects them from powerful emotions that patients display in their presence like anger, frustration, grief, rage and bewilderment. It also insulates patients from the rolling emotions that doctors may at times feel towards them.

However, a detached attitude also insulates doctors from empathizing with patients. A detached doctor may talk in a language that is over patient’s head.

Detachment is not like a light switch that you can turn on and off to suit the situation. Detachment as a practice cannot be in isolation if it becomes your personal style of distracting from the world, it may not be just for the patients but also from your colleague, family friends and even yourself.

I recall when I joined by hospital, the first lesson given to me by my boss was not to get unduly attached with patients. As part of etiquettes, we were taught not to socialize with patients. Even today the new American Guidelines talk that doctors should not socialize with their patients on social media including Facebook. Even doctors are human beings and their personal life should not be known to the patients. As far as lawsuits are concerned, it is equally true that known patients file a lawsuit much more than unknown people because over a period of time they know your weakness. One should learn to empathize with the patients and yet be detached from its results. Doctors who follow Bhagawad Gita understand this concept very well.