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    Music in the Operating Room

    It was several weeks ago I needed a minor operation and so I went to see Dr. Michael Rosenberg at St. Mary’s Hospital in Amsterdam.

    He tried to do it in his office, but when he saw how complicated it was going to be, he decided to take me in an operating room at the hospital. He basically said, “What are you doing at 1 p.m. today?”

    I replied without missing a beat, “I’m having an operation with you, Dr. Rosenberg.”

    During the course of the procedure, he had music piped in and the song “Desperado” by the Eagles started playing. We all kind of stopped what we were doing and I said,” Man, this is a great song.” Both Dr. Rosenberg and his nurses, Mary Jo and Carolyn agreed.

    This was my first experience having surgery in the state of New York. Actually, the last time I had any kind of surgery was way back in Cleveland, Ohio when I was a young girl. I had to have a skin tag removed. To be honest, I don’t think I was in an operating room for that procedure. I think it was done in the doctor’s office.

    I didn’t spend much time in hospitals the whole time I was in Los Angeles. The only hospital I remember going to in the New York area was Yale, New Haven, where they first diagnosed my MS 20-some years ago.

    When they told me I had MS, I remember thinking, “These guys are nuts.”

    I was doing a lot of running and working out at the time and I assumed it was a sports related injury. I thought my “injury” was bursitis for years. I even recall going to a sports medicine clinic in New York City. I was hoping for any diagnosis other than the bad one I got at that time.

    But back to Dr. Rosenberg and his nurses. After I mentioned what a great song this was, everyone agreed and we had a moment of relaxed silence.

    As Dr. Rosenberg was working on me he kept apologizing because he was worried he was hurting me.

    Once the procedure was over ( it only took about ½ hour), the nurses were left with me in the room as they bandaged me up. One of the nurses knew of me through this column and asked me the question I am most often asked, “How’s Herman?”

    I smiled and said that wasn’t his real name. She asked me how he got the name and I simply said, as he often says, “Because I’m ‘her man.’”

    So that was my experience of the operation to start the healing.

    Thank you Dr. Rosenberg and your nurses for making what could have been a very bad experience much better.


    Kathryn Spira, a native of Cleveland who pursued an acting career in NYC and Los Angeles, now pursues free lance writing from Caroga Lake in Fulton County. Previous columns may be accessed at her web site www.kathrynskorner.com