welcome to the organic green doctor blog

i am a family physician who was diagnosed with
early mild cognitive impairment(mci) amnestic type on december 21, 2010
this is a precursor to alzheimers disease
because of this diagnosis i have opted to stop practicing medicine
this blog will be about my journey with this disease
please feel free to follow me along this path
i will continue blogging on organic gardening, green living,
solar power, rainwater collection, and healthy living
i will blog on these plus other things noted to be interesting

Thursday, December 22, 2011

first anniversary

here is the posting from one year ago titled 

it has been my most read blog-it was posted the same 
week with 

one year ago was my last day to practice medicine
i had tried to get everything in order that day because
i knew i wouldnt be back but no one else knew
although one person did come up to me that day and
youre not coming back are you

i had slowed my practice down some by trying not to see
new patients and by not seeing as many every day
i also had been trying to catch everyone i could up on 
their medicines for refills until they could get in to see
some one else

i even did a well child check after hours my last day so that
i could get the check up done for one of the employees
am sure she suspected something was up

i didnt want to stop practicing until i had a definitive answer
even though i knew what was going to happen

i left abruptly 
i was there one day and the next i was gone
once i got the official diagnosis and recommendation for
treatment the decision was easy for me
i had already decided years before that if i were to develop 
early problems that i would stop practicing medicine
so thats what i did and i havent looked back at all

in medicine there is a motto do no harm 
so thats what i wanted to follow
would never forgive myself if i had continued to practice and 
had made a mistake that harmed someone

i have had a busy year
my son was married so that kept us busy with all the events 
associated with that wedding
(told my younger son he that he would have to go to las vegas
to get married when his time came)

i had planned on retiring in 3 years and had programmed things to 
do when i retired
i just started doing them 3 years before i had planned on doing them 

luckily i had a disability plan that covers me until i reach social 
security retirement age-66
it was a battle to get them to pay off but after 6 months they
approved the claim but not untilafter a grueling 8 hour neuropsychological
exam ordered by the insurance company 
slept good that night felt like i had ran a marathon

i stay busy with this blog as it takes 3-4 hours of my time each day 
to research write respond to comments, emails, face book messages etc
this blog has grown over 5 times its volume in the last year

i am in the adni-2 study at ut southwestern alzheimers research center 
and have had to go up there for the study and my neurology visits
frequently this year-logged over 4000 miles traveling
at $0.23 per miles thats $920 i was able to send in to my flex 
account for reimbursement this year for medical travel

i was in 2 short studies there also-one a videoconference for
doing remote neuropsychological exams and the other a video 
that shows medical students and residents how to do a neurological
evaluation and how to do the mental evaluation test called the moca

two article were written about my story and what happened to me
those are easily access on the upper right side of this blog
one article written by mary roser from the austin american statesman
was picked up by the ap news and by mulitple newspapers and
online news services across the us and canada and europe and india

our team the organicgreendoctor.com for the walk to end alzheimers
was one of the most successful teams in the walk this year
we raised the most money and had the most members of an 
individual group
got the plaque for that in the mail yesterday

i gave a talk to a group in lousianna on my story, alzheimers, and on 
organic gardening
i also gave a talk on this-alzheimers not organic gardening- to a large 
group of family doctors recently 
they asked lots of questions
hopefully they will use what we talked about in their own practices and 
will do more evaluations hopefully earlier on their patients instead of 
referring them all 

so ive been busy this last year
and occasionally reflect back over the year and 
realize that it has been a productive one 
maybe i reached more people with this blog and the talks and the
news stories than when i was practicing 

do i miss it 
i miss the interactions with my patients
felt like i did a good job
luckily with face book and twitter and with this blog i have 
kept in contact with a large number of them 

what do i have planned next year
i plan to do more talks on alzheimers
(in fact contact me if you would like a 30-45 minute talk on alzheimers
to your group)
i will continue to do this blog
i will be starting doing habitat for humanity building projects in january 
have always wanted to do that
we have several trips scheduled this year to places we havent been
and frequent trips to see our two sons in san francisco
i will continue to exercise daily-have starting seeking out local hiking
trails to walk regularly 
i will continue to be involved in the adni study this year
no spinal tap this year thank goodness but still have to do those dang
neuropsych exams but only once this year
i will continue to do my organic gardening all year long
part of our christmas dinner will be out of our garden
i will continue to blog on organic green stuff 
and to make my wife she happy i will
continue to be a good house keeper
a good cook
a good shopper
a good travel agent
a good lover
a good husband

so overall not a bad year considering that i didnt plan all this
to happen this way 
just hope this year will go as well
and things will not progress this year
(there appears to not have been progression on neuropsych exams
this year)

keep in touch for year two

the organicgreen doctor


  1. Suggestion, video your talks in the future and post them on Youtube! Maybe even some video of your gardening, etc...

  2. I have an old boss who does Habit for Humanity. He is, like you, an amazing man. A heart of gold and tireless in helping mankind. We often see the folks that make us wonder what this world is coming too because they seem so self centered and so rude. But that is more the one in a few. You are like the so many that we tend to not think twice about. The good guys. The ones that still hold the door. The ones that bend over and pick up something for someone. You are amazing and yet there are hundreds of you. We just seem to not tell ourselves enough, "Wow, what a nice young man!" I think I will make that my New Year's Resolution. To more focus on the good and not the one in a million bad. Thank you for that organicgreen doctor.