Category Archives: medical graphics

The Jigsaw Diagram

If you have read some of my previous posts or followed me on Twitter it is likely you have seen my “jigsaw” diagram in its various incarnations. I drew it, initially, to try and understand the relationships/causes between the various conditions I have ended up with and to make sense of 30+ years of medical records which I obtained, in one go, from three Health Authorities. The notes were a mixture of handwritten ward notes, typed letters and a raft of pdfs on CDs. I was amazed that they stretched all the way back to 1978.

Medical Records – from 1978 onwards

The diagram started out very simply.

Crohn’s Jigsaw – Version 1

It then dawned on me that it would a good way of showing a new doctor or surgeon the complexity of my case on just a single page. This second illustration is the first development of the early version.

Early development of first diagram

I attached this more developed version to a Tweet during a #patientchat to illustrate how I like to communicate. The very positive response that I received from both patients and doctors was very gratifying. There were a number of requests for the template I used. I have therefore removed the text that was specific to my case and saved the file in both the original Keynote format and a Powerpoint format.

If you click on the links at the bottom of this post you will be able to download the appropriate file. Please feel free to use them however you wish. I hope you find it useful and would be grateful if you could credit me if you use it.

This templte should get you started on mapping your medical history

Here’s the most up-to-date version of the diagram, taking the story up to the Upper GI endoscopy in December 2019

Updated – December 2019

…and at one point someone set me the challenge of making an interactive version. Taking the initial, simple diagram I added more “nodes” that when clicked would open up the relevant documents or test results.

The link below will take you to a web based version, although it has not been updated for a while. It was not too difficult to set up but needed a knowledge of “mapping”. The most time consumng part was redacting personal details from the documents.

http://www.wrestlingtheoctopus.com/MedRec

…and then taking it to its logical conclusion, and with thanks to the example set by @MightyCasey, here’s a temporary QR tattoo. It does work. Try pointing your smartphone at it.

…and finally I decided to see how easy it would be to animate the Jigsaw to tell the story in 90 seconds. Here’s the link :

Crohn’s Jigsaw – The Movie (1080p)

Templates

Medical Jigsaw – Keynote Template

Medical Jigsaw – PPT Template