41 episodes

The podcast from The BMJ that tackles the everyday challenges of being a GP

Deep Breath In The BMJ

    • Science
    • 4.6 • 32 Ratings

The podcast from The BMJ that tackles the everyday challenges of being a GP

    Headaches and team debriefings with Heather Angus-Leppan and Michaela Kolbe

    Headaches and team debriefings with Heather Angus-Leppan and Michaela Kolbe

    A slightly different spread of this episode of Deep Breath In, Navjoyt Tom and Jenny are discussing two separate topics, headaches and team debriefings.

    Firstly headaches, the team discuss why so many GPs find headaches to cause the most anxiety in their practice, and get some advice on migrainous headaches from Heather Angus-Leppan, consultant neurologist at the Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust (also discussed vaccinations and CVST in our covid vaccination episode).

    Secondly, team debriefings - seeking support from colleagues is essential, but the way in which teams discuss problems can be helpful or harmful. Michaela Kolbe, psychologist and director of University Hospital Zurich's simulation centre joins us to give some tips on how to make those team meetings work better.

    Reading list
    Team debriefings in healthcare: aligning intention and impact

    • 45 min
    Fitting IUDs with Rebekah Fenton

    Fitting IUDs with Rebekah Fenton

    Doctors are taught from medical school about the benefits of IUD, and are often advocates of them to patients.

    However, recent media attention on the pain that some women suffer when having their IUD's fitted have started conversations about the need for cervical blocks, and more honest counselling of women about the procedure.

    Rebekah Fenton, adolescent medicine fellow at Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago joins us to talk about how she councils her patients, and why the most important thing is to make sure women are in charge of their reproductive healthcare decisions.

    • 55 min
    Covid in children with Greg Zimet and Amanda Kvalsvig

    Covid in children with Greg Zimet and Amanda Kvalsvig

    As the scientific community in the UK still debates whether to vaccinate kids under 16, that leaves us as an outlier to the rest of the world where parents are being encouraged to seek the vaccination of the children.

    In this episode Tom, Jenny and Navjoyt discuss the questions that they're getting in their surgeries, and get some advice on how parents regard vaccinating their children, how to think about transmissibility vs severity when it comes to childrens' risk, and some ways of helping to motivate vaccine uptake.

    Our guests;

    Amanda Kvalsvig is a senior research fellow at the University of Otago, and her work as an epidemiologist has helped to inform the New Zealand government's covid-19 response.

    Greg Zimet is a clinical psychologist and professor in the Department of Pediatrics at Indiana University. His work has focussed on vaccination in children - particularly the HPV vaccine.

    Further reading
    Covid-19 vaccines for teenagers: conversations and consent

    • 56 min
    The complexity of primary care - with Rani Lill Anjum

    The complexity of primary care - with Rani Lill Anjum

    There's a plan from the Royal College of General Practitioners, to stop the profession buckling under the huge pressure applied by the workforce crisis and covid 19.

    The steps outlined are very practical, but do they really get to the heart of the problem with the way in which primary care is practiced in 2021.

    In this episode, Tom, Jenny and Navjoyt are joined by Rani Lill Anjum, a philosopher from the Norwegian University of Life Sciences who thinks about causation in healthcare - and what this means for the doctor patient relationship.

    • 51 min
    Prediabetes or a borderline HbA1c result - with Sam Finnikin and Seamus O'Mahony

    Prediabetes or a borderline HbA1c result - with Sam Finnikin and Seamus O'Mahony

    A borderline hba1c result will initiate a conversation with a patient - but how useful is that "prediabetes" check-in, and can GPs ever adequately describe what the elevated risk of having a risk factor actually means for a patients health?

    Our guests in this episode are
    Sam Finnikin, an academic GP from the University of Birmingham, who gives some helpful tips on explaining that risk, and reminds Tom that fear is not a good motivator of behaviour change.

    Seamus O'Mahony is a retired gastroenterologist, and author. He explains the process which births a new diagnosis, and why he feels that creeping disease definitions are undermining the medical profession.

    Further reading
    A borderline HbA1c result

    The epidemic of pre-diabetes: the medicine and the politics

    Time to question the NHS diabetes prevention programme

    • 56 min
    Lockdown dementia with Jason Karlawish and Jennifer Watt

    Lockdown dementia with Jason Karlawish and Jennifer Watt

    The pandemic had a high mortality toll in care homes, but measures to try and reduce that, through extreme social isolation, has had its own cost.

    Social interaction, particularly with close family, is more than just a quick hello - evidence shows that mental stimulation can help with cognitive decline, and the lack of that interaction may have hastened progression of dementia in some patients.

    In this podcast, the team talk about what GPs can do to support patients in care homes, and we find out about some non-drug interventions patients can try.

    Our guests;
    Jason Karlawish, is a geriatrician, and co-director of the Penn Memory Center, he's also author of the book "The Problem of Alzheimer's
    How Science, Culture, and Politics Turned a Rare Disease into a Crisis and What We Can Do About It"

    Jennifer Watt is a geriatrician, and assistant professor at the university of Toronto, and one of the authors of the recent systematic review and meta-analysis of comparative efficacy of interventions for reducing symptoms of depression in people with dementia
    - https://www.bmj.com/content/372/bmj.n532

    Washington Post article: https://www.washingtonpost.com/health/2020/09/16/coronavirus-dementia-alzheimers-deaths/?arc404=true

    Jason Karlawish and his book https://www.jasonkarlawish.com/the-problem-of-alzheimers

    This American Life episode: https://www.thisamericanlife.org/737/the-daily

    The Daily episode on aducanumab, "some hope is better than having no hope" https://www.nytimes.com/2021/07/07/podcasts/the-daily/aduhelm-alzheimers-fda-drug.html

    • 49 min

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5
32 Ratings

32 Ratings

merielwhite ,


I love this podcast - it talks about important issues and manages to throw in some very useful up to date information but still remain lighthearted and fun to listen too. I love that the hosts don’t take themselves too seriously and are able to have a joke together. Always puts a smile on my face, thank you.

Elsface ,

Ideal for busy GPs

The presenters have found a great way of providing accurate information relevant for GPs whilst making this podcast very easy to listen to during some busy times. Thank-you!

Drestewart ,

Great podcast

Relevant topics, informative but informal, serious but not boring

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