‘Being A Doctor Is A Unique Feeling’

Dr SANTOSH Y M responds to ThinkWellness360 questionnaire. 

Why and how did you think of becoming a doctor?

I owe it to my cousin brother, a doctor, who is now based in London. I was in school when he was doing his internship at the government hospital. I once landed up at his workplace during my summer vacations. After seeing him in doctor’s attire, my dream of becoming a doctor began. I was just fascinated with and ‘hooked’ to the medical field, from the word go. My cousin brother used to sometimes ask me to read Harrison’s Principles of Internal Medicine. He would listen as I read — this had an amazing effect on me. The seed was, thus, sown in me — this was nurtured by my parents’ strong will and blessings.

What made you think of, study and specialise in the system of medicine you now practice? 

Ayurveda has always had a special place in my family. It was but natural that I was drawn to study and specialise in the ancient, yet modern, system of not just medicine, but also the ‘science of life.’

What has been your personal and professional experience as a doctor?

I feel satisfied as a human being with the kind of services I deliver to the community, or society, as a doctor. I don’t know what I would have been — if I was not a doctor. I feel blessed for my special, unique identity in society, what with the privilege I have to diagnose and treat disease/illness, while feeling fulfilled to relieving the pain of my patients. The lack of time for personal interests are all worth it, after seeing the delightful smile and happiness on my patient’s face.

What unique and special skills you think you have that has made the big difference for your patients?

Being a doctor is, by itself, a unique feeling. Add to it, the pristine knowledge of Ayurveda — a healthcare system for life — and, you have the added advantage of not only treating physical ailments, but also treating your patients spiritually, while helping them to change their lifestyles for the better, no less.

What is your best definition of optimal wellness and why?

Optimal wellness is being happy, while having the ‘perfect’ balance with your physical, mental and social health. One who possesses optimal wellness can not only fulfil their responsibilities in an effective manner, but also have a positive impact on society without expectations, or expecting anything in return.

Your ‘best’ case?

There have been many, but I would like to recall a case of chronic high anal fistula. The patient had undergone multiple surgical interventions with no tangible success. I resolved the case in a single attempt. When reoccurrence is expected, more so in an operated case, and it doesn’t show any signs of reoccurrence, you’d sure call it one of your best cases, right?

Your ‘not-so-good’ case?

When a surgical case ends up with an unexpected, but repairable complication, it becomes your ‘not-so-good’ case.

What appeals to you the most?

As a surgeon I’m fascinated with basic surgical techniques, and their modification, while applying them in specific diseases. I love new technology-driven instrumentation in modern surgery.

What annoys you the most? 

Well, there are things that annoy me — when some patients disrespect the medical profession, or think of all healthcare professionals in a negative way, besides the growing influence of, or gross, commercialisation in medicine and healthcare systems. 

Your favourite book?

I just love to read, also re-read, medical text books.

Your favourite joke?

All funny jokes occur when I am with my best buddies.

Your favourite song?

It all depends on the mood I am in and place, or situation etc. I love to listen to Kishore Kumar and Sonu Nigam’s songs.

Your favourite movie?

Kantara [2022; starring Rishab Shetty, Sapthami Gowda, Kishore Kumar G, Achyuth Kumar et al].

Your favourite TV, Netflix show?

Nothing in particular [My preference is always ‘fixed’ — watching news and sports].

Your other interests, or hobbies?

Travel, and exploring new places. Hanging out with my best buddies and going on long drives.

Your goal in life?

Achieve higher things in medical practice and life by being a well-grounded human being.

Dr SANTOSH Y M, MS [Ayurveda], is Associate Professor, Department of Shalya Tantra [Ayurveda Surgery], Kahers Shri BMK Ayurveda Mahavidhalaya, Shahapur, Belagavi, Karnataka. He’s been practicing anorectal surgery with ksharasutra, or kshara chikitsa, for over 14 years, with finesse and success and is equally adept with his specialised treatment in non-healing and complicated wound disorders through Ayurveda techniques. He lives in Belagavi, Karnataka, India.

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