Placeholder Image

Subtitles section Play video

  • Ten years ago,

  • I got a phone call that changed my life.

  • At the time, I was cardiologist at UCLA,

  • specializing in cardiac imaging techniques.

  • The call came from a veterinarian at the Los Angeles Zoo.

  • An elderly female chimpanzee

  • had woken up with a facial droop

  • and the veterinarians were worried that she'd had a stroke.

  • They asked if I'd come to the zoo

  • and image the animal's heart

  • to look for a possible cardiac cause.

  • Now, to be clear, North American zoos are staffed

  • by highly qualified, board-certified veterinarians

  • who take outstanding care of their animal patients.

  • But occasionally, they do reach into the human medical community,

  • particularly for some speciality consultation,

  • and I was one of the lucky physicians who was invited in to help.

  • I had a chance to rule out a stroke in this chimpanzee

  • and make sure that this gorilla didn't have a torn aorta,

  • evaluate this macaw for a heart murmur,

  • make sure that this California sea lion's pericardium wasn't inflamed,

  • and in this picture, I'm listening to the heart of a lion

  • after a lifesaving, collaborative procedure

  • with veterinarians and physicians

  • where we drained 700 cc's of fluid from the sac

  • in which this lion's heart was contained.

  • And this procedure, which I have done on many human patients,

  • was identical, with the exception of that paw and that tail.

  • Now most of the time, I was working at UCLA Medical Center with physicians,

  • discussing symptoms and diagnoses and treatments

  • for my human patients,

  • but some of the time, I was working at the Los Angeles Zoo

  • with veterinarians, discussing symptoms and diagnoses and treatments

  • for their animal patients.

  • And occasionally, on the very same day,

  • I went on rounds at UCLA Medical Center

  • and at the Los Angeles Zoo.

  • And here's what started coming into very clear focus for me.

  • Physicians and veterinarians were essentially taking care

  • of the same disorders in their animal and human patients:

  • congestive heart failure, brain tumors,

  • leukemia, diabetes, arthritis, ALS, breast cancer,

  • even psychiatric syndromes like depression, anxiety,

  • compulsions, eating disorders and self-injury.

  • Now, I've got a confession to make.

  • Even though I studied comparative physiology and evolutionary biology

  • as an undergrad --

  • I had even written my senior thesis on Darwinian theory --

  • learning about the significant overlap

  • between the disorders of animals and humans,

  • it came as a much needed wake-up call for me.

  • So I started wondering, with all of these overlaps,

  • how was it that I had never thought to ask a veterinarian,

  • or consult the veterinary literature,

  • for insights into one of my human patients?

  • Why had I never, nor had any of my physician friends and colleagues

  • whom I asked, ever attended a veterinary conference?

  • For that matter, why was any of this a surprise?

  • I mean, look, every single physician accepts some biological connection

  • between animals and humans.

  • Every medication that we prescribe or that we've taken ourselves

  • or we've given to our families

  • has first been tested on an animal.

  • But there's something very different

  • about giving an animal a medication or a human disease

  • and the animal developing congestive heart failure

  • or diabetes or breast cancer on their own.

  • Now, maybe some of the surprise

  • comes from the increasing separation in our world

  • between the urban and the nonurban.

  • You know, we hear about these city kids

  • who think that wool grows on trees

  • or that cheese comes from a plant.

  • Well, today's human hospitals,

  • increasingly, are turning into these gleaming cathedrals of technology.

  • And this creates a psychological distance between the human patients

  • who are being treated there

  • and animal patients who are living in oceans

  • and farms and jungles.

  • But I think there's an even deeper reason.

  • Physicians and scientists, we accept intellectually that our species,

  • Homo sapiens, is merely one species,

  • no more unique or special than any other.

  • But in our hearts, we don't completely believe that.

  • I feel it myself when I'm listening to Mozart

  • or looking at pictures of the Mars Rover on my MacBook.

  • I feel that tug of human exceptionalism,

  • even as I recognize the scientifically isolating cost

  • of seeing ourselves as a superior species, apart.

  • Well, I'm trying these days.

  • When I see a human patient now, I always ask,

  • what do the animal doctors know about this problem that I don't know?

  • And, might I be taking better care of my human patient

  • if I saw them as a human animal patient?

  • Here are a few examples of the kind of exciting connections

  • that this kind of thinking has led me to.

  • Fear-induced heart failure.

  • Around the year 2000,

  • human cardiologists "discovered" emotionally induced heart failure.

  • It was described in a gambling father who had lost his life's savings

  • with a roll of the dice,

  • in a bride who'd been left at the alter.

  • But it turns out, this "new" human diagnosis

  • was neither new, nor was it uniquely human.

  • Veterinarians had been diagnosing, treating and even preventing

  • emotionally induced symptoms in animals

  • ranging from monkeys to flamingos, from to deer to rabbits,

  • since the 1970s.

  • How many human lives might have been saved

  • if this veterinary knowledge had been put into the hands

  • of E.R. docs and cardiologists?

  • Self-injury.

  • Some human patients harm themselves.

  • Some pluck out patches of hair,

  • others actually cut themselves.

  • Some animal patients also harm themselves.

  • There are birds that pluck out feathers.

  • There are stallions that repetitively bite their flanks until they bleed.

  • But veterinarians have very specific and very effective ways

  • of treating and even preventing self-injury

  • in their self-injuring animals.

  • Shouldn't this veterinary knowledge be put into the hands

  • of psychotherapists and parents and patients

  • struggling with self-injury?

  • Postpartum depression and postpartum psychosis.

  • Sometimes, soon after giving birth,

  • some women become depressed,

  • and sometimes they become seriously depressed and even psychotic.

  • They may neglect their newborn,

  • and in some extreme cases,

  • even harm the child.

  • Equine veterinarians also know that occasionally,

  • a mare, soon after giving birth,

  • will neglect the foal, refusing to nurse,

  • and in some instances, kick the foal, even to death.

  • But veterinarians have devised

  • an intervention to deal with this foal rejection syndrome

  • that involves increasing oxytocin in the mare.

  • Oxytocin is the bonding hormone,

  • and this leads to renewed interest,

  • on the part of the mare, in her foal.

  • Shouldn't this information

  • be put into the hands of ob/gyn's

  • and family doctors and patients

  • who are struggling with postpartum depression and psychosis?

  • Well, despite all of this promise,

  • unfortunately the gulf between our fields remains large.

  • To explain it, I'm afraid I'm going to have to air some dirty laundry.

  • Some physicians can be real snobs

  • about doctors who are not M.D.'s.

  • I'm talking about dentists and optometrists and psychologists,

  • but maybe especially animal doctors.

  • Of course, most physicians don't realize that it is harder

  • to get into vet school these days than medical school,

  • and that when we go to medical school,

  • we learn everything there is to know

  • about one species, Homo sapiens,

  • but veterinarians need to learn about health and disease

  • in mammals, amphibians, reptiles, fish and birds.

  • So I don't blame the vets for feeling annoyed

  • by my profession's condescension and ignorance.

  • But here's one from the vets:

  • What do you call a veterinarian

  • who can only take care of one species?

  • A physician. (Laughter)

  • Closing the gap has become a passion for me,

  • and I'm doing this through programs

  • like Darwin on Rounds at UCLA,

  • where we're bringing animal experts and evolutionary biologists

  • and embedding them on our medical teams

  • with our interns and our residents.

  • And through Zoobiquity conferences,

  • where we bring medical schools together with veterinary schools

  • for collabortive discussions

  • of the shared diseases and disorders

  • of animal and human patients.

  • At Zoobiquity conferences,

  • participants learn how treating breast cancer in a tiger

  • can help us better treat breast cancer

  • in a kindergarten teacher;

  • how understanding polycystic overies in a Holstein cow

  • can help us better take care

  • of a dance instructor with painful periods;

  • and how better understanding the treatment of separation anxiety

  • in a high-strung Sheltie

  • can help an anxious young child struggling with his first days of school.

  • In the United States and now internationally, at Zoobiquity conferences

  • physicians and veterinarians check their attitudes and their preconceptions

  • at the door and come together as colleagues,

  • as peers, as doctors.

  • After all, we humans are animals, too,

  • and it's time for us physicians to embrace

  • our patients' and our own animal natures

  • and join veterinarians

  • in a species-spanning approach to health.

  • Because it turns out,

  • some of the best and most humanistic medicine

  • is being practiced by doctors whose patients aren't human.

  • And one of the best ways we can take care

  • of the human patient is by paying close attention

  • to how all the other patients on the planet

  • live, grow, get sick and heal.

  • Thank you.

  • (Applause).

Ten years ago,

Subtitles and vocabulary

Operation of videos Adjust the video here to display the subtitles

B2 US TED human veterinary medical heart failure ucla

【TED】Barbara Natterson-Horowitz: What veterinarians know that doctors don't

  • 5917 560
    CUChou posted on 2015/06/03
Video vocabulary