Opinion Article25 January 2019

By Mike Oppenheim, MD


Years ago I suffered a stomach virus, not a serious illness but unpleasant. I was resting after a night of vomiting when the Beverly Garland called. I could have stalled or asked a colleague to make the visit, but symptoms were improving.

I had not entirely recovered, so my wife agreed to drive. As we approached the hotel, my nausea returned. It grew intense by the time the guest opened
his door.

I remain proud of delivering an Academy Award-worthy performance, sitting quietly, focusing entirely on the guest, not hurrying, providing sympathy, advice, and medication as well as collecting my fee.

As soon as the door closed behind me, I dived into the nearest restroom and resumed vomiting. Several guests entered, saw my distress, and fled. But I got better. Most sick people get better.