Tuesday, April 25, 2017

College house, Colombo, Sri Lanka.

email sent by Milroy De Silva

College house anthem
This is a good time to recall the College House anthem.

   The posh building was called Francina Walavva. It was bought to become the first university around 1920s.
Varsity and medicos obtained it as a lovely lodging as alternate sites were selected for the expansion of varsities.
College House today stands in its former glory.
We were hostellers there 1950-60s, with tennis and Badmington courts and the main ground of the varsity in front.
We recall this song song, thumping college house wooden floors while our anthem went:
I was thumping SKP’s pair o’ bongos
(The beach was a mere ½ Km and many walked down that way of an evening, like this nostalgic young fella,)

Walking down the beach of palmyrah,
Walking down the beach of palmyrah
Dangling my wondayful, wonday ful
Dododle my dooddle my doodah.

Ho!
There I met a fair young senorita,
I met a fair young senorita,
While,
dangling my wondayful, wondayful
doodle my doodle my doodah!

I laid her on a sofita,
I laid her down on a sofita,
While gently, inserting the, end of my, end of my
Dooddle my doodle my doodah.

I gave her a dose of semina,
I gave her a dose of my semina,
While, inserting the end of my, end of my, end of my,
doodle my doodle my
doodah.

She gave me a dose of clapita ( boys join in the refrain)
She gave me a dose of clapita,
( louder!)
Which infected the end of my,  end of my,
end of my doodle my doodle my doodah.

So!  then I went to a physiaciana
I went to a physiciana
Who cut off the end of my, end of my, end of my, 
 doodle my doodle my doodah.

Now, I walk down the beach of palmyrah,
I walk down the beach of palmyrah,

While dangling ( Louder please!)
what is left of my, left of my,
left of my, wondayful doodle my doodle my doodah!

Clapping heard at the rear.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Soft launch of the book - Essentials of Surgery by Dr. R. L Spittel, Reprint with annotations.



Can you guess the batch mates 1960 entrants

"Joe Kantha' and Karals

Karals 'holding forth'

Geri Jayasekera

Buddhika Kaluaratchy, Asoka Gunasekera and Geri

Daya Thenuwara
Sunil Liyanage

Philip and Karals

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Release of book 'Essentials of Surgery by R L Spittel with reprint and annotations'.




Progress of surgery seen by a good medical teacher
February 8, 2017, 8:42 am 

This launch of Volume 1 of the reprint of the book, "Essentials of Surgery" by R. L. Spittel, FRCS. Eng. first published in 1932 when he was a Surgeon at the General Hospital, Colombo, (now The National Hospital of Sri Lanka) and Lecturer in Clinical Surgery, Ceylon Medical College, (now The Medical Faculty, University of Colombo), together with annotations by experts is timely and welcome. It gives the reader an opportunity to appreciate the tremendous strides this discipline, and medicine as a whole, has taken since.


The book was written in the pre-antibiotic era, when viruses and genetics were unknown, when anaesthesia was in its infancy and when the only imaging investigation available at that time was X-rays. His objective was to present a concise alternative to larger textbooks, so that, as stated in his preface, "if fundamental principles are thoroughly grasped by the student, their application in diagnosis and treatment becomes a habit of the mind, then the subject of surgery becomes both interesting and simple". The book achieves this and more, displaying at the same time the author’s attributes of a true scientist, a good doctor and surgeon, whose practice was based on these foundations together with his skills as a good medical teacher.


Some unique features
It displays his thorough command of the English language combined with the romanticism of writers of fiction. He has the license to use words such as "acuter, "commoner" and "sapremia’, "keep the emunctories active", and the ability to describe with uncanny precision "a patient violently intoxicated with bacterial pus". The reader would appreciate further nuances in his graphic descriptions of conditions and disease such as cellulitis, gangrene, the death throes of a patient with tetanus, a passage of almost poetic content in describing a patient with delirium tremens, etc. Most of the clinical states throughout the book appear to be graphic details of the author’s own observations which add a unique and authentic flavour to the teaching/ learning process.


In what must be the only instance in medical history, the author describes a case illustration of a patient with virulent sepsis of the finger spreading up the arm, multiple surgeries, the suffering ("he begged that his arm be cut to tatters", "for the next four days he hung between life and death", and his recovery. He recovered four months later, with a residual ankylosed shoulder. The case was his own experience with infection and near death!


There were no specialities at that time. General surgeons also treated patients with Ear, Nose and Throat (ENT) problems, Venereal diseases (Sexually Transmitted Infections), Orthopaedic problems, Neurosurgical, Vascular, Urology, Leprosy and of course problems of surgical Oncology. In addition to textbook descriptions of these conditions, the reader would recognize and appreciate the author’s unique style of descriptive talents.


How many ulcer clinics, not only in Sri Lanka, but all over the world, need to be reminded, nay, blared to out aloud with this statement "The actual destruction of germs in wounds is impossible with antiseptics in strengths which will not cause actual destruction of tissue cells, as germs are not all on the surface of the wound, but deeper in the tissues". Nevertheless, there are easily over a hundred brands of expensive products for "local treatment" of ulcers in the markets today! He exhorts "gauze should never be pushed into discharging wounds and sinuses for this is the most effective way of preventing pus from escaping". The plugging of wounds with gauze is a common practice even today, and numerous are the patients who have suffered septicaemia as a result, ending in amputation or even death!


The next feature of this launch is the addition of annotations to put the text into modern perspectives. "As undergraduates, we were told that 50% of what we are teaching you today would at some time in the future be proved to be wrong. The problem is that we do not know which 50%!" Prof. Graham Taylor, Imperial College, London. A discerning reader would readily note some of these, if not-all the errors, in what were at that time in history, truisms in surgery. The annotations give evidence based accounts of modern advances compiled by experts to give a "modern twist" to this absorbing book.


It has been a fascinating journey and experience reading the copy and the annotations and whilst thanking the authors, Dr Lakshman Karalliedde and Dr. Philip Veerasingam, for giving me the luxury of writing this foreword, I invite readers to go into this fascinating journey and experience when reading the book.


A. H. Sheriffdeen


M.B.B.S. (Ceylon), F.R.C.S. (England), D.Sc. (Honorary) University of Colombo. Emeritus Professor of Surgery,


University of Colombo.



Friday, January 27, 2017

The winter of .ones life





Email from Milroy De Silva.


May not and will not apply to many of you, but still a good

read.​


Then

it was winter..........

I

FIRST STARTED READING THIS EMAIL & WAS READING FAST UNTIL I REACHED THE

THIRD SENTENCE. I STOPPED AND STARTED OVER READING SLOWER

AND
 THINKING

ABOUT EVERY WORD. THIS EMAIL IS VERY THOUGHT PROVOKING. MAKES YOU STOP AND

THINK. READ SLOWLY!




AND

THEN IT IS WINTER








You

know. . . time has a way of moving quickly and catching you unaware of the

passing years. It seems just yesterday that I was young, just married and

embarking on my new life with my mate.






Yet

in a way, it seems like eons ago, and I wonder where all the years

went.




I

know that I lived them all. I have glimpses of how it was back then and of

all my hopes and dreams.




But,

here it is... the winter of my life and it catches me by surprise...How did

I get here so fast? Where did the years go and where did my youth go? I

remember well seeing older people through the years and thinking that those

older people were years away from me and that winter was so far off that I

could not fathom it or imagine fully what it would be like.






But,

here it is...my friends are retired and getting grey...they move slower and

I see an older person now. Some are in better and some worse shape than

me...but, I see the great change...Not like the ones that I remember who

were young and vibrant...but, like me, their age is beginning to show and we

are now those older folks that we used to see and never thought we'd be.

Each day now, I find that just getting a shower is a real target for the

day! And taking a nap is not a treat anymore... it's mandatory! Cause if I

don't on my own free will... I just fall asleep where I sit!







And

so...now I enter into this new season of my life unprepared for all the

aches and pains and the loss of strength and ability to go and do things

that I wish I had done but never did!! But, at least I know, that though the

winter has come, and I'm not sure how long it will last...this I know, that

when it's over on this earth...its over.




A

new adventure will begin!










Yes,

I have regrets. There are things I wish I hadn't done...things I should have

done, but indeed, there are many things I'm happy to have done. It's all in

a lifetime. So, if you're not in your winter yet...let me remind you, that

it will be here faster than you think. So, what ever you would like to

accomplish in your life please do it quickly! Don't put things off too

long!! Life goes by quickly. So, do what you can today, as you can never be

sure whether this is your winter or not! You have no promise that you will

see all the seasons of your life...so, live for today and say all the things

that you want your loved ones to remember...and hope that they appreciate

and love you for all the things that you have done for them in all the years

past!!






"Life"

is a gift to you. The way you live your life is your gift to those who come

after. Make it a fantastic one.




LIVE

IT WELL!




ENJOY

TODAY!






DO

SOMETHING FUN!




BE

HAPPY !




HAVE

A GREAT DAY




Remember

"It is health that is real wealth and not pieces of gold and

silver.













LASTLY,

CONSIDER THE FOLLOWING:





TODAY

IS THE OLDEST YOU'VE EVER BEEN,




YET

THE YOUNGEST YOU'LL EVER BE SO - ENJOY THIS DAY WHILE IT

LASTS.




Your

kids are becoming you......but your grandchildren are perfect! Going out is

good.. Coming home is better!  You forget names.... But it's OK because

other people forgot they even knew you!!!  You realize you're never

going to be really good at anything.... especially golf.










The

things you used to care to do, you no longer care to do, but you really do

care that you don't care to do them anymore. You sleep better on a lounge

chair with the TV blaring than in bed. It's called "pre-sleep".  You

miss the days when everything worked with just an "ON" and "OFF"

switch..






You

tend to use more 4 letter words ... "what?"..."when?"... ???




Now

that you can afford expensive jewelry, it's not safe to wear it

anywhere.  You notice everything they sell in stores is

"sleeveless"?!!!






What

used to be freckles are now liver spots.




Everybody

whispers.




You

have 3 sizes of clothes in your closet.... 2 of which you will never

wear.




But

Old is good in some things: Old Songs, Old movies, and best of all, OLD

FRIENDS!!








Stay

well, "OLD FRIEND!" Send this on to other "Old Friends!" and let them laugh

in AGREEMENT!!! It's Not What You Gather, But What You Scatter That

Tells What Kind Of Life You Have Lived
.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Obituary - V. Karunakaran

Dr V Karunakaran

Inbox
x

velupillai karunakaran karunakaranfamily@yahoo.co.uk

5:53 AM (2 hours ago)
to Velupillai
Dear All
With great sadness we are informing that Dr V Karunakaran, retired consultant Gynaecologist, has passed away peacefully on 19/01/2017.
Funeral arrangements will be notified later. 
Dr Mrs  VM Karunaharan- 02084671808 / 07958031964
Dr K Vithian
Dr Bala Karunakaran