Physician, journalist, entrepeneur Bruce Dan was recently diagnosed with acute myelocytic leukemia and is blogging about his treatment.
As another friend of Bruce’s – Robert Davis – wrote to me:
“It’s really remarkable that Bruce is able to write about his leukemia treatment as he goes through it, sharing his perspectives as a patient, physician and journalist.”
Powerfully, he includes what I’ll call a “teaching moment” in each blog entry. Excerpt:
Cytosine arabinoside works by disrupting the copies of DNA in a cell when it tries to divide and multiply. Watson and Crick won the Nobel prize for discovering the chemical structure of DNA, that famous spiral-shaped ladder. Each rung of the ladder is composed of a pairing of two of four molecules: adenine, thymine, guanine, and cytosine, simply referred to as A, T, G, and C. The new Director of the NIH and former head of the Human Genome Project, Dr. Francis Collins, refers to DNA, “as made up of that simple 4-letter vocabulary.”
If personality can help get you through a life bump like this, then Bruce is well equipped. Any encounter I’ve ever had with him starts with an ear-to-ear grin and warm welcome.
Bruce was instrumental in starting me on my current path of trying to improve health journalism. He and George Lundberg worked with me to publish my very first health journalism critique in 1992 – the JAMA piece, “The Magical Medical Media Tour.” Wow. 18 years ago.
Read his blog, learn from Bruce’s lessons, and say a prayer for him.