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PTA Blog Talk

Trying to Understand

Published September 30, 2008 5:06 PM by Jason Marketti

In my search for information I come across many sites that provide valuable references for me.

One search led me to a biography site (www.whonamedit.com) that I devoured rapidly and I enjoy going back frequently to keep updated on the information as new entries are provided. And since I read frequently about many subjects I figured I was pretty smart until I read about BIID or Body Integrity Identity Disorder. There are many Internet sites about this disorder that are available and even Wikipedia provides a fairly accurate article on BIID.

There are some things we may never understand when it comes to humanity. Even the sessions involved in patient care can come into question daily while we are treating or trying to treat certain patients. For instance, if a patient requests hot packs, ultrasound, TENS and massage for a treatment but declines any participation with exercises, should I provide the "feel good" stuff and ask them to come back three times a week for two weeks? Or advise them that I am not a spa and send them on their way to another therapy place that will provide them with what they want?

I chose the latter and was reprimanded. Was it right? I don't know; at the time I was busy and frustrated that people thought they could dictate their care. It's not that I knew what was best for them; I just didn't want to see the patients treat our profession that way.

People do things that I just don't fully understand. In fact, I do strange things that even I don't understand. I drink from the same cup at every meal, I have my own fork that I use and no one is allowed to touch it, I even mix my peas and corn on my plate.

For the most part I try to fully realize what the patients and family members are going through during their difficult times. It is too easy to ignore subtle signs of irritation and frustration during family meetings or brush off remarks the patient makes about their care.

With the patients I see I employ compassion in the care provided, empathy when discussing the patients situation, and a broad understanding of their situation so I can provide the best treatment possible for every patient (except the one that walked out and thought I was a spa technician).

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About this Blog


    Jason J. Marketti
    Occupation: Physical Therapist Assistant
    Setting: San Jacinto, CA
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