One of our contributors, Dr. Jim Lace, recently returned from medical mission work in Tanzania, where he captured nearly 20 video patient cases. The patients and families shown in these videos face medical challenges that are virtually unheard of in the developed world. Life-threatening, disabling conditions caused by inadequate folic acid intake during early pregnancy; cancer, congenital heart disease and infectious conditions that are advanced and, often, untreatable by the time these patients are able to access care. These videos can be hard to watch, but it’s so important that we do. They broaden our understanding of the different ways illness can present in the developing world, and how limited diagnostic and treatment options affect prognosis. Equally important, they deepen our compassion, and remind us that we are called to serve. I feel renewed gratitude for the many resources available to me as I treat my patients; there is so much we can do for them! And I feel tremendous respect for Dr. Lace, who routinely answers the call to serve in the most challenging environments.
See published cases from TZ, and watch for many more over the coming weeks.