The Arc is a majestic and awe-inspiring structure, the kind that springs from the triumphant state of mind that seems to enthrall emperors. Suffice it to say, physicians do not think like emperors and, as great as the past decades in rheumatology have been, I seriously doubt that any of us wants to erect a marble edifice to herald our accomplishments. Physicians are also realists, knowing that side effects of any new treatment can always strike with a vengeance and, even if RA can be brought under control, a multitude of other diseases lurk to threaten our patients
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Physicians are modest in celebration (ever see a high five after a successful code?), and I for one would like the money that could be used to build monuments to instead fund research and provide funds for patient care. I know that this thinking is dreary and mundane, but perhaps it is medicine’s troubled state of affairs today that gives rise to such thoughts.
Back in North Carolina, Durham’s Main Street is not the Champs-élysées, but the sky glistens with Carolina blue, the sun glows silver-white, and I need a walk, perhaps strolling to the Duke Chapel, our version of Notre Dame. I will therefore retreat from serious pondering, conclude these pensées and say to mes amis from EULAR, merci beaucoup, au revoir, and hope you had a great time in San Francisco.
Dr. Pisetsky is physician editor of The Rheumatologist and professor of medicine and immunology at Duke University Medical Center in Durham, N.C.