Magazine article USA TODAY

Many Things Old Are New Again

Magazine article USA TODAY

Many Things Old Are New Again

Article excerpt

While CAT scans, MRIs, and other high-tech advances permeate the jargon of modern medicine, many of the standard "die-hard" practices such as house calls and pulse taking--along with the general practice family physician--continue to prosper, indicates Leonard Morgan, assistant professor of family medicine, University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center. While many people consider the house call to be a long-dead casualty of busy, impersonal society, it remains alive and well and a very valid health care alternative, particularly for the growing number of elderly patients.

House calls will become even more popular as the American population continues to age, he predicts. While they can be time-consuming and limited because of the lack of access to office medical equipment, they nonetheless allow physicians to get to know patients in a way that they can not during a regular office call." . . . Positive doctor-patient relationships are more easily forged during house calls, while problems such as alcoholism and medication mismanagement are easier to identify."

Still fundamental to the art of medicine and one of the doctor's most basic diagnostic tools, "Pulse taking [reveals] the heart rate and how it responds to exertion. …

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