UofTMed Magazine

Reading UofTMed magazineOurs is an alumni magazine like no other. Dive into medicine’s most pressing topics through bold, compelling and relevant stories in the award-winning UofTMed magazine. 

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Winter 2021: The Insulin IssueInsulin Thumbnail

It saved lives, sparked careers and drove a century of science — the discovery of insulin has had an unquestionable ripple effect on the world. The Nobel Prize winning breakthrough from 1921 is well-entrenched in Canadian history.

But, there remain many unknowns about insulin — and diabetes.

There are also huge hurdles in addressing the disease, from social disparities among those affected to the uneven cost of insulin to the complexity of lifelong treatments.

Technological and medical innovations hold tremendous promise. So do individualized approaches that recognize each person will manage diabetes differently.

There is also a growing awareness of the need to address systemic factors that influence the onset and course of the disease.

What will drive the future of diabetes care and discovery?

Summer 2020: The COVID-19 IssueUofTMed Magazine COVID Issue

The COVID-19 pandemic is shifting life as we knew it.

Thousands have died.  The work of clinicians and researchers has been upended.

Time has both sped up and slowed down. Practices that seemed inconceivable months ago are now normalized. Everyday features of our former lives seem distant or unfathomable.

But there is hope. Medical and research communities have pulled together like never before to move Canadians through the throes of the crisis. Trust in science and health care providers has never been higher, and the need for investment in research — and the drive for equity — never more clear.

So, what does the future look like? What lies ahead in the post-COVID world?

 The Power IssueWinter 2020: The Power Issue

The power balance is shifting in health care and research.

Families and patients are becoming more engaged in their care. Trainees are speaking up. Marginalized populations are forging new pathways to power.

This dynamic is creating tension within a system and culture built on levels of expertise. How are health care professionals, researchers and educators adapting?

The Sex Issue - UofTMed MagazineSummer 2019: The Sex Issue

Take a deep breath. We want to talk about sex. Despite growing social acceptance of sexual diversity, many health care providers shy away from open conversations. Is it fear? Ignorance? Something deeper?

Let’s widen the lens on healthy sex. Desire, identity, intimacy — it’s about quality of life as a human being.

UofTMed W19 death and dying in medicine coverWinter 2019: Death and Dying in Medicine

Too many people wishing for peaceful last days end up alone in a hospital corridor, or on life support, or still on chemotherapy. In an era when there’s often a new procedure or clinical trial to offer, perhaps we do too much and talk too little. We struggle with the transition from saving life to easing death. Too often misunderstandings and missed opportunities take root in the space between declining and dying.

How can we move beyond discomfort and fear to help more people experience a better death?

UofTMed S18 cannabis coverSummer 2018: Cannabis

When the final barrier to legalizing marijuana was removed in 2018, few health professionals were prepared. That’s because the info­rmation we need mostly doesn’t exist.

There are no databases to consult about contra­indications. No clear evidence on dosing, much confusion about oils and edibles, and little guidance from our professional bodies. And despite very differing opinions, everyone agrees there’s not nearly enough reliable research into the benefits and risks of pot use.

Meanwhile, patients and clients need answers…

UofTMed W18 humour coverWinter 2018: Humour

Humour — does it belong in a field as serious as medicine? Some feel it’s too culturally rooted, too easily misinterpreted, that the consequences of getting it wrong are too high. It’s a touchy subject and, in many ways, a challenging theme to explore in medicine.

And yet humour can help people get through terrible pain, anxiety and uncertainty. It can humanize physicians and scientists, and build a deeper rapport with colleagues, helping everyone through the bad days. In these pages, we explore how humour can be a powerful tool to both hurt and help.


UofTMed S17 heal thyself coverSummer 2017: Heal Thyself

Can We Talk About Physician Mental Health?

With physician burnout approaching crisis levels, it’s time for doctors to start talking about our own mental health and well-being.


UofTMed W17 change coverWinter 2017: Change

In medicine a sing­ular impera­tive has emerged: We must change.

Change to har­ness the poten­tial of our high-tech world. Change to meet the future chal­lenges of an aging popula­tion. But what should change? Where to focus? How to make it happen? We put these quest­ions to our faculty. These are their answers 




UofTMed W18 mystery coverSummer 2016: Mystery

What makes for a really good mystery? It isn’t just an interesting question or sparring with a particularly evil villain. A good mystery is born from the tension that builds as our hero pursues the truth, often against the odds.

In many ways, that’s what happens every day in the Faculty of Medicine. Our students and faculty don’t just struggle with novel questions but pursue evidence through research and rigorous examination. They see their fair share of villains, sometimes in the form of devious pathogens, but more often revealed by a dog that doesn’t bark, like from an Arthur Conan Doyle tale. Physicians and medical researchers are frequently confronted by mysteries that demand not just strong clinical and scientific skills but also a gumshoe determination to uncover the facts. We are both Sherlock and Dr. Watson.

UofTMed S16 food issueWinter 2015: Food

“Food, glorious food!”

Those aren’t just memorable lyrics from the musical Oliver. It’s what we think when we see a sumptuous meal. It’s what we say at dinner with family and friends. It’s how we feel when we settle down on a cool fall day with some comfort food.

Food is deeply tied to our social structures, our emotions and our health. It says a lot about who we are, from our personalities to our genetics. In this issue of U of T Medicine magazine, we explore our love — and sometimes fear — of food and its consequences.

UofTMed S15 future coverSpring 2015: Future

Living “Forwards”

The philosopher Søren Kierkegaard once said, “Life can only be understood backwards — but it must be lived forwards.”

That’s what our researchers, clinicians and educators at the Faculty of Medicine do. We don’t look back at the long legacy of achievement at our Faculty and rest on our laurels. Instead, we look forward at the challenges that lie ahead.  And when you speak to our faculty members individually, you soon find that most of us are pretty optimistic about the future.