Sherwin Nuland slams Fox's "House, M.D." for portraying a doctor who is a jerk and Colby Cosh slams back -- The premise of the new show starring Hugh Laurie is: Wouldn't it be cool if every hospital had a Greg Cochran on staff for diagnosing the really hard cases -- an irascible genius who has personally been burned by other doctors' incompetence at diagnosis and now won't let anything, including reputation, civility, and other people's self-esteem -- get in the way of figuring out what the damn disease is?
Everybody has stories abut doctors' incompetence at diagnosis. Personally, back in 1997 I had a board-licensed M.D. feel a hot dog-sized tumor growing out of my armpit and tell me, "Don't worry about it. It's probably just a muscle pull." But he was a nice guy! In contrast, the non-Hodgkin's lymphoma expert I eventually went to who had access to a life-saving cutting edge experimental monoclonal antibody treatment was a jerk, but I'm alive today, seven years later. Thank you, Dr. Jerk!