Richard Wynd wasn’t bouncing back from back surgery the way he’d hoped in April 2015.
For Wynd, in his mid-70s and shown here with his wife, Deanna, one of the more puzzling effects was that he developed inflammation in his lungs that led to breathing problems. He had to be prescribed oxygen at home.
Wynd’s pulmonologist determined Wynd had developed idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, a progressive lung disease that rarely has a known cause and doesn’t have a cure.
Through TMC’s membership in the Mayo Clinic Care Network, affiliated physicians have the ability to seek an eConsult with Mayo experts, allowing an additional review and providing patients a second opinion.
An eConsult review of Wynd’s case confirmed his physician’s diagnosis.
“I already had confidence in my doctors here,” Wynd recalled, “but when it comes to your health, it’s always nice to have that extra reassurance of another set of eyes. My family was extremely worried, and I know they really felt listened to. It was just nice to have that validation.”
Meanwhile, Dr. Stefanie Schluender, a surgeon who specializes in colon and rectal surgery with Arizona Community Surgeons, has consulted electronically with Mayo Clinic three times.
“The Mayo Clinic consults have been helpful in my practice for unusual cases,” Dr. Schluender stated, adding they allow for an efficient way to get a second opinion in areas such as pathology, oncology and radiology.
“Although we provide excellent surgical and medical care at Tucson Medical Center, it can often be a comfort to the patient to know that their care has been reviewed by an outside institution with such an excellent reputation.
“I can also reassure my patients that they are receiving the best medical care for unusual diagnoses – for example, recent cases of anal melanoma and indeterminate colitis.”