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David Mittleman
David Mittleman
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Practice Makes Perfect

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The New York Times recently published a story about one of its staff writer’s relatives. Her relative discovered that she had rectal cancer, which would require surgery, radiation and chemotherapy. The local surgeon noted that while he would perform the surgery, the results would not necessarily be completely favorable. Specifically, she was informed that she may require a colostomy; a procedure that diverts waste out of your abdomen, following the surgery.

After weighing out the costs and benefits of having the procedure, she decided to forgo the convenience aspect of being treated locally and chose to make a two-hour trip to a nearby cancer center. There she found a surgeon who specialized in rectal cancer, who performed the surgery without any complications.

This is something with which patients from smaller towns are all too familiar. The truth is, practice makes perfect. When choosing a health care provider, consider taking a longer drive to see a specialist. Here is a list of the top-ten medical centers:

1. John Hopkins Hospital

2. Mayo Clinic

3. UCLA Medical Center

4. Cleveland Clinic

5. Massachusetts General Hospital

6. New York-Presbyterian Univ. Hosp. of Columbia and Cornell

7. Duke University Medical Center

8. University of California, San Francisco Medical Center

9. Barnes-Jewish Hospital/Washington University

10. Brigham and Women’s Hospital