2018 was a great year for JailMedicine! Noteworthy events from the year include:
I introduced a new feature–Sample Guidelines–which turned out to be very popular. I intend to add many more sample guidelines this year. Please let me know what guidelines you would like to see!
I began a new blog on MedPage Today entitled “Doing Time: Healthcare Behind Bars” (found here) that introduces our world of Correctional Medicine to outside medical professionals who have no idea what we do. This has also been well read.
Readership increased substantially in 2018. This may be because I published more articles . . . Thank you to everyone who read JailMedicine this year!
Without further ado, these are the five most read articles from 2018:
I was given the opportunity to create a tutorial of the classic method of lancing an abscess when a friend of mine came to my office with a great cutaneous abscess on his back. This has been, by far, the most read JailMedicine article of all time.
Microdermal implants are so common as to be ubiquitous. Almost all of th jewels can be unscrewed from the base, which is my preferred way to deal with them in a jail setting. However, occasionally, patients want to have the implant removed entirely. It is not hard, but many practitioners have never done it and so do not know how.
I have a confession to make. I no longer (usually) incise and drain abscesses in the manner that I taught on the photographic tutorial above. My dermatologist friend and colleague, Neelie Berlin, showed me this nifty technique that uses a 4mm punch biopsy tool It is quicker, easier and just as effective for the majority of uncomplicated skin abscesses you will see in your clinics. You just have to order the punch biopsy tool!
Scabies is so common in jails that every jail medical professional should know how to recognize this itchy little pest. It is not too hard as this post points out. Also, It turns out that treating scabies with oral ivermectin is less expensive and easier than using topical permethrin cream.
Many seemingly benign medications are commonly diverted and abused in correctional facilities. The risk of abuse for some of them so overwhelms any potential benefits of these drugs that I argue that they should rarely be used in jails and prisons.