Sympathy Pain, Lemons, and Lemonade

Hello All; This has been a long, difficult, and lesson-learning week. I am not writing from the chemo infusion suite. In fact, I’m not writing at all. Soon I will post my typical blog. As I was working on that, my “brother from another mother”, Dr. Jeff GUDIN, asked me if he could write a guest post. Of course I would never decline that. In fact, my son-in-law, another Jeff, is gearing one up too.  I promise you will see another post from me, even it’s from the grave. My heart and soul are one with Jeff Gudin, and he got me back – this time I was in tears. And let me tell you, since being on oxaliplatin, tears burn, Ironic, right? Here’s what my dear friend, colleague, and brother has so say…

I’m both saddened and honored to be writing this guest blog for my dear friend and colleague, Jeff Fudin, and I hope many of you will follow with encouraging messages of love and hope. I have asked Jeff (if he feels able) to add just a short message, to follow.

Let me just say it – things have worsened considerably in the Fudin household. Not that we haven’t overcome plenty of obstacles to this point but this time, it’s different. Jeff has enrolled in home hospice. I can only hope that all of our support and prayers add a little fuel to his immune system and help fight this awful disease of colon cancer. But on every front, the malignancy is just that – malignant, progressing unfettered and continuing to unfairly rob him of life.

For the past year, we have followed Jeff’s story, full of medical ups and downs, tinged with both lemons and lemonade – and most importantly, surrounded by his incredibly joyous family milestones. In typical Fudin fashion, he has kept our hopes and spirits up – all the while educating us and uncovering the inequities in healthcare that even those of us “in the know” have to navigate.

When speaking with Jeff this week, for the first time, I sensed that feeling of defeat – like he has finally run out of medical therapeutics. I tried to argue and negotiate further diagnostic and treatment options, from cannabinoids and muscle relaxers to prokinetic motility agents and visceral analgesics, but everything he shared, as usual, made sense and I couldn’t argue with the great and undeterred pharmacist.

When I hung up, all I could think about was how can one possibly treat anticipatory grief.  Nausea, indigestion, anxiety, confusion, and even frustration and anger overcame me. Simply put, Jeff deserves more time and we need more time with him.

Knowing that Jeff would want me to think clinically, my only respite has been to call this grief sympathy pain. I know that many of us feel it now. And helpless, not knowing how to console a friend, brother, colleague, and compatriot who is suffering with both physical and existential crises. I only hope that we can all take solace in the fact that we, his friends and family, have squeezed out every last possible drop of our love to shower and shield him from pain over the past year. And as we go forward, now more than ever, Jeff needs our prayers of healing and support.

Jeff often speaks proudly of his dad, also a pharmacist (the trade continues to run in the family), who ingrained into Jeff that with their profession came a commitment to lifelong patient care and learning. Who better than Jeff exemplifies that mantra? He has more disciples than anyone I know. Jeff is a pioneer who has changed the lives of countless physicians, pharmacists, nurses, students, and more. Now is our chance to say thanks and let him know how much he means to us. For those like me who often consider a “reply” but don’t push the button… do it NOW. Let’s see if we can get him a few more immune boosts while he continues this battle.

Jeff, we love to read your stories and blogs. We have followed your trials and tribulations. We have been awed and uplifted by your continued determination to learn, to educate, to mentor. You have lifted us up during your entire illness and we are here now for you with love and compassion.

Jeffrey Gudin, MD
Professor, Dept of Anesthesiology, Periop Medicine and Pain Management, University of Miami, Miller School of Medicine
Clinical Associate Professor, Department of Anesthesiology and Perioperative Medicine, Rutgers NJ Medical School
Board Certified Pain Medicine, Anesthesiology, Addiction Medicine, Palliative Care

Comments are enthusiastically welcomed. I love receiving comments on various social media platforms (Facebook, Linkedin, Twitter), but please also paste those comments on here if you have time! 

99 thoughts on “Sympathy Pain, Lemons, and Lemonade

  1. Jeff, you have been my friend, my colleague and my partner in numerous presentations. I have had the fun and honor of being your straight man for those presentations. We did good work and it was fun. Hopefully we changed some colleagues mind about use of opioids.

    My professional experience with Hospice has always been fulfilling and satisfying. I only have my mother’s experience with hospice a few years ago as she was dying. The hospice staff was wonderful and caring and could not have been better. But while in my professional role I was confident and comfortable, in my role as my mom’s son and caretaker, along with others, I was surprised by the fact that no matter how good the hospice staff is, at a deeply personal level, it was a death watch for my mother. Make no mistake the hospice staff was wonderful, but I was unprepared for the fact , that the hospice staff being Wonderful or not, personally what I was experiencing was a death watch for my mother. And that was brutal and something I was wholly unprepared for.

    My friend, you have made my life better in many ways. Thank you so much for the short time we experienced life together. It was a joy. You are a joy. Travel well my friend, and as always if you need anything, or if I can help in any way just reach out and I’ll be there.

  2. Hi Dr. Fudin,
    It’s been a while since I’ve seen you although i see the Facebook posts regularly! You have such a nice family and an admiring work family! I think it’ speaks volumes of your outstanding personality and teaching ability/knowledge that all those pain pharm residents are still near and dear to you! You are to us, other educators, an excellent role model as well, showing how these relationships should be nurtured! What an amazing and special thing!!
    Very sorry about the recent troubles you have been going through! But based on the posts it appears that you are making the most of even this situation!
    Essentially everything i know about pain management I’ve learnt it from you; which has benefited many patients over the years and I will be forever grateful for it!
    Prayers for you and your family!

  3. Hi Dr Fudin,
    I am very sorry to recently learn of your illness. I reached out to Hannah who sent me the link to your blog. You are amazing- the entire package- as this blog says it all -a wonderful person-husband, father, friend, colleague, teacher! I am especially grateful for your kindness and guidance when I reached out to you years after Hannah graduated with my new role in pain management. I really was not sure you would even remember me as we only met one time let alone answer my questions! You have touched so many and we are grateful for your expertise and willingness to share your knowledge so we can better care for our patients. Thank you for who you are kind and generous! Congratulations on your new family additions! Of all the memberships, the Grandparents Club is the very best!! Sending prayers to you and your family! Barb

  4. Jeff, thank you for being someone I look up to as a pharmacist and someone I so admire as a human being. Thanks for letting me share my story on your blog – I didn’t know until you asked how much I wanted to get it down “on paper.” I’m praying for you my friend.

  5. I don’t ever think I’ve met a more charismatic, dedicated, and compassionate individual than Dr. Jeff Fudin. You’ve paved such a path for so many of us younger aspiring pain mgmt pharmacists and really showed what the true potential of a pharmacist can be. All of your hardwork and accolades are truly unmatched. If I could compare it to a athlete, being the basketball fan I am, you’re easily the Michael Jordan of Pain Mgmt Pharmacy. Relentlessness in your pursuit for knowledge and teaching. More importantly you’ve shown how important it is to treat others with respect and fairness throughout your career. I will never forget interviewing at VA Albany and getting so nervous over pharmacology questions from Dr. Fudin. Looking back, it helped me an incredible deal throughout the rest of my journey/interviews and I must say thank you. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for being there for us all in this field that is changing so much each day. We all love you very much Dr. Fudin and are with you no matter what!

    1. Matt, Thank your for this very kind note. I guess there is at least one advantage of knowing your days are limited. I’ve never been told “ If I could compare it to a athlete, being the basketball fan I am, you’re easily the Michael Jordan of Pain Mgmt Pharmacy.” Now that is a compliment I can take to my grave with a smile. Keep up your great work and always build on every knowledgeable pearl you take away each day. That’s what will make YOU a great clinician and person. And that’s what every patient needs!

  6. I have missed many of your posts thanks to Facebook and I’m just now reading what’s been going on. I want you to know that you have had a tremendous impact; not only on me and the chronic pain community, but on Medullary Sponge Kidney patients around the world. I am so grateful that you allowed me to interview you years ago and that you became an ally in our fight to educate. It was an honor to collaborate with you on several articles over the years, and I have always deeply respected your opinion and insight. You are truly an inspiration. From the bottom of my heart, thank you!

  7. I want to say again that all the times I spent with you on rotation and beyond have been some of the greatest times of my life! I had an absolute blast working with you on everything! I didn’t, and still can’t believe the sheer amount of knowledge you have! And of course, not to mention the extreme kindness you always exhibit! I’ve always looked up to you and will always continue to, no matter what!

    Thank you so much for allowing me to be a part of your incredible life and for teaching me so much! I will forever be grateful for all the opportunities you gave me, and I will always consider it a blessing and honor to know you!

    We will all continue to pray for you and your family!

  8. Dear Jeff,

    Thinking of you and your sweet family. Not sure where to begin! You have played such a huge role in my understandings of Pain Management, you have taught me so much. You were the best of our team. You helped so many patients and physicians and staff. I just can’t think about you being in Hospice. Sending you many prayers and love. I pray you are resting more.

    1. Abby, I’m living it and have difficulty imagining it myself, especially after such a long travel day. I am getting some much needed good rest tonight, and am surrounded by love or thoughts like yours which is what keeps me alive. You have no doubt had as large an impact on me, as I did from you. I love watching your lovely and growing family on social media. You, your nonjudgmental compassion towards people and life, your zest for interdisciplinary cooperation toward painstakingly helping your patients on the right paths, and natural ability to heal those around you are a true blessing. You played a large part to “complete me” and validate my intuition on many occasions. You also provided countless opportunity and trust for my residents. Keep being you – you’ll be in my heart eternally.

  9. Dr. Fudin,
    You don’t know me but I’m sure you are getting many of these well wishes. We did meet once at a Midwest Pain Society meeting. I’m sorry to say I wasn’t aware of your illness until a colleague forwarded the PPM update (somehow my subscription ran out and I lost track). Your opioid calculator has been a regular resource over the years to provide safe and effective pain care. Your advocacy and passion are above no other. My new pain career is in palliative care and I continue to be inspired by the information in PPM. I will keep you and your family in my prayers for your comfort both physically and mentally. Know your influence has affected countless practitioners that you have never met, and will continue to influence long after your physical presence has left us.
    Mary Lyons APRN

  10. Greetings to you Jeff F. I have been drinking your lemonade and do have great appreciation and admiration for all you have openly shared. I believe you can see from the multitude of continued responses; encouragement and support, that in Hebrew “chaverim” is appropriate, a true group of friends from your continued life’s journey. Many may call you hero, many, a champion, and each are accurate as you have championed for so many as you rallied care and support for people with pain. The lives you have touched are immeasurable and now we stand together surrounding you, giving back that same care and support. Jeff G., spectacular, thank you.

  11. Dear Dr. Fudin
    I wonder whether you remember, in 2004, when I joined Albany VA, you gave a talk in our Hem-Onc dept on “Pain Management” That was my first encounter with you. What an amazing talk, full of clear concepts with examples. You are an outstanding teacher. I learnt so much from you, during last many years while taking care of pain in cancer patients. Above all, you, are a wonderful human being, extremely caring, always available to help. My prayers are with you & you family during this tough time. With peace & comfort.
    Your friend
    Syed Mehdi

    1. Thank you so much Syed. Your are what we called in Yiddish, a true mensch. You always listened intently and you always provided an explanation if we disagreed – which was rare. This was a very kind note and it’s memories and encounters like this that help me gang on and squeeze out the last ounce of joyful lemonade memories.

    2. Thank you Syed. I remember that day well and remain grateful for your friendship, professional encounters, and lessons we learned in tandem over the years! You my dear friend are the definition of much needed team medicine. That is what positively affects patient outcomes. Stay you and never lose that smile and compassion that shines upon your face daily!

  12. I first heard Jeff Fudin speak about five years ago, at a rally for chronic pain patients on the White House Ellipse in Washington DC. I was also at the podium later in the program on a very cold and windy Fall day. It was what I’d call a “learning experience.”

    Jeff was prepared, emotionally and mentally grounded, and very gracious to the relatively few people who actually showed up among the 150-plus who responded to several online invitations. He has displayed those qualities in everything I’ve seen him do on behalf of his fellow professionals and on behalf of pain patients struggling to overcome the horrendous effects of misdirected CDC and National policy on treatment of pain. I have many times referenced his papers. in my own advocacy efforts.

    I can only send my deeply felt wishes for improvement and healing in a very difficult medical situation.

  13. Dear Jeff,

    Thank you for being an amazing human being and for sharing yourself with us who know and love you as well as those whose lives you have touched by how you’ve educated and impacted others.

    As you stand on the edge of this next part of your journey, we stand with you in support…we offer the gifts of presence and prayers…and the warmth of respect and love.

    Peace be within you and within all who know and love you.

    Thank you.


  14. Jeff G – truer words have not been written. Thank you for them. Jeffy F – I couldn’t have known back in 2004, when you invited me to do my first talk, that you would become the Clyde to my Bonnie, the peas to my carrots, and sometimes the ying to my yang. They say we are brought to this life, each with our own purpose. Of course, yours is teaching, from patients, to students and residents, to health care providers and even ridiculous bureaucrats! And it’s not just the pharmacotherapy, it’s the life lessons that you so willing share. You have outdone yourself with the Lemonade blogs.
    Thank you for always being a willing and supportive mentor, not only for the young people, but for this girl. I wonder how many papers you peer-reviewed for me and wrote with me? There were so few of us back then. And thank you for partnering with me SO many times on the platform and at the podium. Those talks were some of the greatest fun I have experienced in my career. Debates will never be the same.
    And let me tell you, there is nobody I would rather share the heartburn and headaches of advocacy with. It’s possible that we made people nervous when we put our heads (and mouths and pens) together, but that was always part of the fun. You may be taking a piece of my heart with you, but, rest assured, your voice will never leave my head! I wonder how many times I have heard you say “you have GOT to be kidding me” right before we took off on another advocacy tear.
    But I think my favorite part of our friendship has been the hours of food and drink, memories and laughter at every opportunity in so many cities across the country.
    In closing, I would like to leave you with 3 promises and a poem. 1) I promise to always speak up when it needs to be done 2) I promise I will always wear a bowtie when I speak at a national meeting (I’m not saying how I will wear it!) and 3) I promise to make lemonade at every opportunity. So, my parting shot is “Lemons are sour and cancer sucks, but I wouldn’t trade our friendship for a billion bucks!”

    All my love and big hugs for you, Robin and the family.

    1. Lee, You leave me speechless, which as you well know, is no easy feat. I love you to the moon and back, and I share and cherish all those memories we have experienced well over two decades!

  15. I am so shocked and saddented to read this.

    Dr. Fudin you have done so much to educate the medical community about chronic pain and opioids. There are so many patients out there like me who never would have had the opportunity to really live their lives were it not for the work you and so many others did to expand the use of opioids – and then to defend their continued use. The last 22 years of my life haven’t been easy, but there is no comparison to what things would have been like were it not for people like you, Dr. Tennant, and so many others that paved the way for the use of opioids in patients with chronic pain. I wouldn’t have had a fraction of the amazing experiences I’ve had. I would probably be off in a nursing home if not dead. After they really got the meds dialed in, it was like I had a new lease on life and so much healthier overall. Please know that your life’s work mattered oo many.

    You and your family will be in my thougths and prayers during this most difficult time.

  16. Hi Jeff,

    I’m going to pray over you and the sickness you have been struck with:

    Father I thank you for Jeff and I thank you that you are going to give him such wisdom and knowledge concerning your holy word father God. I thank you that the enemy cannot come against Jeff and no weapon formed against him will prosper in Jesus name! With the stripes of Jesus, Jeff Fudin needs healed in Jesus name! Holy spirit, I ask you to take every thought captive that is not of God and the Holy Spirit to draw Jeff closer to Jesus where he can feel his presence in his home in his vehicle where ever he is he will feel the loving arms of Jesus and healing virtue flow through Jeff from the top of his head to the soles of his feet. I speak peace over Jeff’s mind and Father, I thank you that he will feel your peace and he will not feel any discomfort or pain in the days to come because he is going to put his trust in you and you alone, in Jesus name!!!! Amen

  17. Another amazing post and tribute to the original Jeff Rx! From lax games to turkey trots to Santacons and Fudinfests, there is never a dull moment with you in it. We’re all thinking of you Jeff and sending love and strength. Thanks for reminding us that the glass can always be half full with the right perspective, this time with lemonade

  18. My Dear Dr. Fudin,

    This is reaching out and taking a real chance; but I must, especially now…
    I would be honored if you would accept my great thanks and deep gratitude to you on behalf of another subgroup – the pain patients.
    Although you weren’t aware of it, you became a member of my Pain Mgmt Team shortly after your first Lemonade post last June.

    My disease has been an 18-year journey
    with RSD/CRPS.
    But my story is not important – the wonderful serendipity is that my research on opioids led me to your site, and then also led to your first Lemonade post. The rest, as they say, is history.

    With each new post I celebrated with you your high points; offered prayers for you and for your incredible family, colleagues, and friends – they are such gifts! I saw them all through your eyes (and your pics!) and feel as though I know them. Your ER visits especially I empathize with completely…just shocked it would happen to a Dr. (?!?)
    Then, I would spend hours poring over research to learn your lessons – I have advanced degrees in the earthly sciences, but a Dr. I definitely am not!

    But by far, my most important contribution as a ‘long-distance’ acolyte has been to ask every Pain Doc in my acquaintance, “Have you ever heard of the Fudin Factor?” or “Are you familiar with Dr. Jeff Fudin?”
    If not, I provide the website, and let the magic happen. Soon, it was the PA’s, the NP’s,
    and the nurses! Then I would “follow up”…

    You deserve to be heard.
    I look very forward to your promised book.

    One other gift you have given me – the numbers 1 and 8, and the Hebrew interpretation meaning ‘life’ or ‘living’.
    I’m sure that was a special message for you…

    You are such a gift, Dr. Jeff. Keep the faith…
    Trust in love…and living. These are my prayers for you. O…and also, a little tune keeps running through my head, so I’ll share it;
    It’s “Catch a Falling Star…and Put it in Your Pocket”.
    Thanks for all the lessons…

  19. As a patient with complex debilitating pain disorders working in the health care field, I just want to express my deep gratitude for your compassionate advocacy and education work on behalf of the community of pain patients and those who care for us. Sending you my heartfelt good wishes and “spoons” to carry you through. ❤️

  20. Hi Jeff,
    I didn’t have the good fortune to be one of Jeff’s trainees, but had the pleasure of being a colleague. I can confirm for those who knew Jeff later that even in 1989 He was wearing the colorful bow ties and was doing clinical pharmacy work. Jeff took the leap to earn his Pharm. D. when the credential was a new, rare degree; no easy task while working full time. He was already a respected expert in oncology when I met him. Many years later when I moved back to the area and joined VA I found Jeff had expanded his expertise in pain. Experiential education professors at our academic affiliates would always ask how many more students Jeff could take because they knew students would not only have a great clinical experience, they would likely have the opportunity to have a publication or two on their CV as well. Whenever I would meet with Jeff to try to review workload and attempt to reduce the ever expanding demands on his time, he would instead argue that he wanted even more students to train. He pushed to get VA funding to create a PGY-2 residency program in pain and palliative care and in true Fudin fashion he agreed to stay on as a WOC with a scope of practice even after he retired from VA to make sure the residency would continue to flourish. Jeff, you are a one-of-a-kind and I’m so happy you get to see now how much you mean to people, and how much of a positive impact you have had during your short venture through this life. Well done!

  21. Jeff, I vividly remember my 1st day on Tim’s APPE rotation after he assigned me 4 or 5 of your articles to read, and asking, “Who is this Jeff Fudin guy?” After Tim’s enthusiastic explanation of how amazing a pharmacist you are, and then seeing you deliver amazing CEs at midyear, I was hooked. You became my personal pain hero. Whether it was your insightful articles, or you telling off the CDC with evidenced-based science, I thought you were the “bees knees”! They say you should never meet your heroes, but meeting you at PAINWeek exceeded all my expectations. You were warm and charismatic with me despite my nerding out and acting like a total groupie! You have never been too busy to mentor anyone who asks, and i am forever grateful for Tim’s rotation that introduced me to pain management and you. Thank you for being a guiding light in pharmacy to everyone you meet. Until we meet again.

  22. Jeff,

    I am so happy to have you as a mentor and a friend. You have been amazing in the VA Hospital with the veterans and in the podium when you gave lectures nationwide, as well. I really look up to you as a role model. I would like to see more pictures of you as proudly playing with your grandchildren and your dog. We all love you and wish to see you soon! Indeed!

  23. Jeff! I will never forget our chance meeting in Vegas, followed a few weeks later by my residency interview where we were “introduced” so professionally and then quickly got to catching up about Vegas shenanigans. I hope you remember that too and it makes you laugh!

    Your legacy in the profession of pharmacy and pain management are obvious and far reaching, but its the legacy in your family that is most inspirational to me. All of us students you’ve taught along the way will stop and think “WWJD” for decades to come when treating patients, but many of us are now raising our own children and get to also be inspired by the way you love, support, and prioritize your family. It is clear how devoted you are to your wife, your kids, their spouses, and your beautiful grandbabies. I am so sorry for the turn of events, and I wish for more comfortable and happy times for you. A life lead like yours does not just “happen”, rather it is done with purpose and intention. Thank you for the impact you have so purposefully made on those around you.

    In my 16 year career, I believe you are still the only person to refer to me by “Doctor” and I know you did that to all of us residents and new grads to emphasize the degree we worked so hard to earn. Thank you for that. And thank you for everything. Best to you, Jeff, and your beautiful family.

  24. Jeff, I continue to pray for you, your family, friends, and healthcare providers. Thank you for everything you are showing and teaching us as you face your own mortality. I know you have helped me and many others learn what it really means to live, love, laugh, and leave it all on the playing field as a legacy; To make a real difference in this world. Thank you. ‍♀️

  25. Dr. Fudin,
    Wow! Look at all these wonderful comments! How can mine possibly match up? I have enjoyed your lectures through the years, and enjoyed sharing dinner with you on occassion at a meeting or two, as we share a love of buprenorphine 🙂 Anyway, of course, my heart breaks for your circumstances, and what your family has had to endure. But, you have certainly left an amazing legacy, and I know your family will take comfort in being able to continue in your footsteps. Your courage and tenacity has been amazing to witness. We have all been touched in one way or another by your work, and for that I am thankful.

    Warmest regards,
    Amanda Zimmerman, PA-C

  26. Thank you for my brother’s tribute (Jeff Gudin), and for the loving comments my brother is receiving from all his family, friends, and even people who have never met my brother.
    This has been, (and STILL IS), A BETTER WORLD because of my brother Jeff!!

    Your FOREVER Sister,

  27. What a wonderful post Dr. Gudin.


    Thank you for all the work you have done over the years to not only share your perspective but to create resources and document your insights for the benefit of others. I’ll always have fond memories of my first ACCP Meeting where I attended the Pain/Palliative Care PRN session and subsequently decided I wanted to go into pain and palliative care. It involved a debate about ketamine (before it was a mainstream conversation) and I got to listen to you, Suzanne Nesbitt, and Lynn banter back and forth. I’ve never laughed so hard while learning so much! You’re in my thoughts. AAAE

  28. Thank you Dr. Fudin… you have impacted so many lives – family, friends, patients, students, colleagues. I wish you and you family peace in what dreams may come
    -Bridget Protus

  29. Love to Jeff and his family. Everytime I eat a jelly bean I think of Jeff. Everytime I see someone using a chainsaw to cut down a super tall tree I think of Jeff and our video. Everytime I see a request for quantitative confirmation from a UDS I think of Jeff. Everytime I get a Starbucks coffee at work I think of Jeff. You are always in my thoughts and make me smile.

  30. The Fudin Factor isn’t just part of a mathematical model to calculate methadone doses. The real Fudin Factor is YOU, Jeff. It’s your zest for life, teaching/mentoring, and family. You have given so much to me as my mentor, and I thank you. I promise to make sure the Fudin Factor continues on and multiplies. Love you and praying for you!

  31. Jeff you have had such a positive impact on my life as well as countless others. I know that my dad was among his happiest working and hanging out with you. I know you brought him a lot of joy but also a lot of peace. Your ability to exemplify Healthcare as a lifelong endeavor of learning and helping others is something we are sorely missing these days. It is also something I promise to carry with me always and think of you and my dad when I get frustrated to remind me what is most important and why I got started in Healthcare in the first place. Sending lots of love and all my best and hope to see you soon if able.

  32. Sending positive thoughts and a quote – “I can be changed by what happens to me. But I refuse to be reduced by it.”
    Maya Angelou

    Your impact on Pharmacy and Pain Management is immeasurable!

  33. One of my earliest memories with Jeff is when we used to decorate our bikes and have parades around the neighborhood led by Jeff playing the saxophone! So many fun times in the neighborhood over all these years, so much fun I had to get my own house in the neighborhood! I have loved being able to see you out for walks with or without the pup! Thank you for sharing your journey, we are all with you!

  34. Dear Doctors,

    It’s been many moons since we last met, and yet you continue to inspire me from afar, as I have been watching. Thank you. I, too, adored working in the pain management space, and I loved having the honor of working and learning alongside both of you. Now, my travels have taken me into the land of Immunology- how fitting, reading this beautiful message from Dr. Gudin. Dr. Fudin- I have been taking notes. My mother was diagnosed with bladder cancer and has had the bladder removed. It remains a journey. Thank you for sharing information I have tucked away for when I need to draw on it. At every turn, you have given life. Bravo, Bravo- a standing ovation I give to the two brothers, Jeffrey Gudin and Jeffrey Fudin. Never had the world before been gifted with this delight, and it’s one for the books, as you both have made an indelible mark on many lives. Including mine and that of my family.

    Bravo Doctors,

    Amanda Stephens Hogan

  35. “Yesterday is history. Tomorrow is a mystery. And today? Today is a gift. That‘s why we call it the present.”

    Thank you for the present of your knowledge, inspiration and friendship. You add quality to all our lives.

  36. You don’t know me, Dr. Fudin, but as a pharmacist, you have inspired me ever since our mutual colleague Michele Matthews mentioned you once when she was schooling me on pain management. I have known your face and eagerly read your material over many years and I can relate to Dr. Gudin’s “sympathy pain.” It’s like a type of Takotsubo, even though we never really met (but I went to several of your talks at meetings when I could!).
    Your reach has been immense and I thank you for all that you’ve taught me, including in these most recent months.
    Raising a glass of lemonade for you, kind sir.

  37. JEFF! Thinking of you and thanking you. You have the best fighting spirit in the biz in more ways than one. I’m so glad I learned from the greatest, and it all started with your enthusiasm! You never poo-poo’d my interest in community pharmacy work. You encouraged it, and challenged me to think about how I could take my experiences in VA and make an impact in the community.

    Because I know you love this stuff…I’ll share a few cool nuggets from this week. My students won a best poster award at the 2022 Pitt Schools of the Health Sciences Health Disparities and Social Justice Poster Competition today for their work on vaccine equity. I’m also putting in for year 4 of my CDC Overdose Data to Action grant to continue to work to reduce stigma around OUD and get more naloxone out there. We also just released our “Let’s Talk Sigma” podcast miniseries through the Pharmacy Podcast Network. All this work started with you and Jacqueline and the harm reduction work in VA. You taught me how to teach others.

    I cannot thank you enough for the huge impact you’ve had on my career. I owe you something big. Hugs, love, high fives, and appreciation! <3

  38. Thinking of you, Jeff and family. ❤️
    We have all loved having you as a neighbor for these 3 decades and I for one will always hear a saxophone differently because of you. Kudos to the way you have lived your life and the values you have instilled in your children and what they will pass along. Your spirit keeps us smiling though we wish you did not have to leave the party so soon.

  39. Sending so much love from San Diego!

    You have touched our hearts deeply and you inspire us with your strength, optimism, knowledge, and kindness. Thank you for sharing so much wisdom and compassion with all of us (and for your humor, and the resulting laughs …. you know how to bring great joy, even in times of sadness). We love you and hope you can feel our hugs and love!

  40. You’re very much in our thoughts. Sending much love and prayers to you and your whole family.

  41. At Jeff’s request, I am including my personal message to him.
    Jeff, no need to respond! I’ve spoken to Jeff B and Thien and have heard how things are going. Dr Gudin just posted a great blog and tribute to you! I know right now you need our love and support more than ever! I can not adequately express how much your mentorship has meant to me and changed the entire course of my life and career. I chose to train residents because I wanted others to have the profound gift I had been given. You introduced me to a new world of colleagues that welcomed me with open arms and I was instantly respected because of your reputation. I have sought to be deserving of that respect ever since. I love that your mentorship never had an expiration date but as you said, was more like the “Hotel California.” I hate that we don’t have more time, but I wanted to take a second and let you know how much I love and admire you! I’m grateful for the time we had in November and will treasure it always. Please let me know if there is anything I can do!
    Love, Tim-First Apprentice

  42. It’s been a gift to hear from you throughout this journey and to hear from Dr. Gudin today. I read each one of them in your voice and even add that special Jeff-inflection onto words here and there. I’ve had to Google so many of these medications that I’ve started to get targeted ads for OTC laxatives.

    You’re a comedic legend, able to cut the tension with lines people never see coming. That dry, well done bacon sandwich on toast will never not make me smile. It took the place so long to bring it out, I think they thought it was a joke. It sounded like you were chomping on a bunch of dried sticks and leaves. You’ve built an amazing family and community here, and I’m proud to be part of it. Hope to see you soon.

  43. Jeff (Fudin), I can hardly compose myself enough to write this message. I can’t tell you how great of an impact you’ve had on me as a person, resident (struggle bus class of 2014), and pharmacist. You are a master of your craft and have taught me to strive to do the same. Your patients, coworkers, and colleagues respect and admire your passion, expertise, and clear and unwavering commitment to the patients you’ve served and practitioners you’ve inspired and supported over your years of service and dedication to the field of pharmacy. But your impact does not end there… it has always been apparent just how much you love and cherish your family, whether it be your incredible wife, children, and grandchildren, or those of us who have worked with and been mentored by you who are lucky enough to have become part of your work family.

    I’ve learned so much from you over the years, more than you know, both professionally and personally as you are a phenomenal family man and friend as well as professional. I don’t know how you do it but you are a breath of fresh air, sunshine, warmth and love, yet can command the respect and attention of any room.

    Jeff, you are an inspiration to anyone privileged enough to interact with and have the chance to love you. While we haven’t lived in Albany for 7 years now, you are always close to our minds and our hearts. Darrin, Baby Girl (Kamani), and I send every ounce of love and gratitude your way. We hope, some day, we have a fraction of the impact on others that you have had. You are a true role model and we love you dearly. <3

  44. Jeff – You’ve always been one of the bright points in my life, most especially when we were professionally sparring! I still have the methadone t-shirt! But when my back was against the wall, it was you I reached out to, and you were always, always, unstintingly there. I’m burning up the airways to heaven with prayers for hope and healing my friend. Know that you are well loved.

  45. Jeff, you have had such a profound impact on so many lives. We thank you for your gifts and will strive to pass them on to the next generations of pharmacists.


  46. Jeff, you’ve always been a source of inspiration – the way you have lived your life is truly a lesson to us all. I have always admired the joy and happiness that you bring to the people you love, and the enthusiasm and spark you have always shown in everything that you do. I will always fondly remember time spent in the neighborhood, in your backyard, in the pool. I’m rooting for you!

  47. “And in the end, the love you take is equal to the love you make”
    Jeffie, thank you for the knowledge, the laughs, the eyerolls, and your friendship. My life is better for having known you. You have always been a force to be reckoned with and that will never change. I’m fairly certain there will be more exploits in your future (just no more streaking please!) .

  48. Jeff Fudin – you have been a gift of God to so many….. the pharmacy profession, pain management community, students, friends & family. My thoughts and prayers are with you while I’m walking the 500 mile Camino de Santiago pilgrimage across northern Spain (now partially in your honor as well)
    Jeff Gudin – thanks for your kindness to your brother from another mother….. what a fantastic friendship.
    I’m honored to count you both among my dear colleagues!!

  49. Dr Fudin,
    Like your brother from another mother, I, too have resisted making comments as I have followed your journey. My fear was that if I commented, I would be acknowledging the truth; a truth too painful to give the power of credence to. Now I will delay no longer…I want to express my gratitude for having worked with you and gotten to know you during our time at Millennium. Your expertise in pain management is amazing, and your obvious passion for teaching shines through with every opportunity. Professional acumen aside, I truly enjoyed getting to know you a bit on a personal level. I so admire your optimism, warmth, and sheer sheer love for life every day. I will always remember your stories about utilizing drug testing in pain management patients…to this day I am the life of the party when I repeat some of those humorous anecdotes! You are blessed with a loving family, good friends, and will leave a legacy of having made an impression on every person you touch. Please know that my prayers are with you & your family every single day. May you be blessed with comfort and peace always.
    Nancy (Hart) Wellstead

  50. Jeff G- thank-you for this beautiful tribute to Jeff F who continues to teach all of us in the pain and palliative care pharmacy community!
    Jeff F- know that your are in the thoughts and hearts of an army of those you have influenced with your wise teachings over the years!
    With love, Bridget Scullion

  51. Jeff, A heartfelt thanks for all the work you did for people in pain at the Albany VA. Wishing you a long journey, with good symptom management to stay with those you love as long as you are able. Thank you for your teaching.

  52. I’ve been struggling to find the right words to tell you how much you and your family mean to us. We were just a couple of kids when we moved in next door to you, Robin and the kids. As we were just starting out, with no children of our own, we felt so lucky to have moved into the perfect neighborhood. We have so many memories from living on Wakefield Court, and all of them make my heart smile, I can still see you fishing out Nick’s Lego from the basketball pipe in our driveway. I can picture Koda(k) and Klondike meeting me at the fence for a treat as I hung the sheets on the clothes line to dry. I can see tiny Shirah bringing me lettuce and veggies that Robin grew in the garden, and I was so grateful you were right next door when Jack had an allergic reaction to his antibiotic and you knew exactly what to do. Through the years, and all the miles after we moved, it was a joy to watch your family grow. To see their accomplishments from afar, but always close in heart. My heart breaks for all that you’re going through. You have faced this illness with such dignity and Grace. While you are an inspiration for so many, it’s is your compassion and advocacy for patients to that sets you apart from so many others. With a heart filled of love and admiration for you, Robin and the all of the kids, I wish you peace. When the time comes, and it will come for all of us some day, know that your family will be surrounded with love. Our thoughts, prayers and love are with all of you today and in the days ahead.

  53. So sorry to hear the condition of Jeff. He is such a joyful and energetic person. I met him in the ASHP when I was a resident. he was so kind to talk to me and introduce me his daughter who was deciding to to go pharmacy school and we connected in FB. Time flies and I can’t believe it was over a decade. Pray for Fudin family! God bless

  54. It’s hard to beat Jeff “squared”, as they are much more than just than the product of the equation, which they have proven time and time again. I have made it a point to make sure that Jeff knows just how much is cherished by all who he has touched along the way professionally and personally, and that includes me. And I know that he does know. Jeff G, thanks for yet another wonderful example of that in your post!

  55. Jeff (F) The words of your friends and family are a testament to the good life you live. Aristotle would truly deem you ‘eudaimon’ – a happy, i.e., fully virtuous and flourishing person who spreads that happiness around. My heart is with you and your family.

  56. Sending an abundance of love to my cousin Jeff and family. Thank you so much for sharing your journey. I learned a lot along the way. Wishing you peace and comfort.

  57. Jeff-you have impacted me both personally and professionally. I appreciate everything you have done and am grateful to know you. Your brave transparency about your journey is awe inspiring.

  58. A beautiful blog about a beautiful man who has led a beautiful and exemplary life. We all love you Jeff and family and we are hoping and praying and asking and demanding and beseeching the universe for more time to experience more insight and more learning and we want to have more time to be with you and have more of an opportunity to tell you how much gratitude and love we have for you. How many people could have accomplished so much in their life and yet here we all are wanting more. That’s my sympathy pain Jeff G, I share Jeff’s frustration in my bones, because I want more. Jeff Fudin. Bless Jeff and the Fudin family.

  59. Dear Dr Jeff Fudin – you know we all love you and are so incredibly appreciative of your knowledge, your wisdom and your friendship. We truly wish there were another path for you, but alas we will walk with you along this path as you wish. We are grateful for you, appreciative of Robin and the kids/family and know that you are “a one in a million” friend, mentor and colleague. We could not have asked for a more brilliant example of what the world should/can offer patients. Please know you have give us hope, have instructed us to be the best we can be and have given Us strength when we needed it. We love you dear friend and are here and available as you need/want us. Blessings, love and prayers – Marsha

  60. Love Jeff. Thinking of him daily. No one is going or gone when they are in our thoughts and hearts. It’s impermanence.

  61. Dear Dr. Jeff and Dr. Jeff,
    I am RN who has been involved in pain management for many years. I have learned so much from both of you from afar by reading many things you have written and shared the articles with physicians who learned from reading them. I am so lucky to know a friend of yours, Marsha Stanton. It is always such a tenuous time when illness migh be overcoming treatment (actually, that sucks), and I pray that is not so. You have been so amazing at sharing your journey (I have shared your blog with many nurses and pharmacy friends) to allow us to learn so much from the human, prescriber, doctor and caregiver perspective that I am thinking someone you know could turn this into an amazing course as a tribute to you to share with many. Thank you. Wishing you many more moments of joy with your amazing family and friends. Sending hugs.

  62. Sendin so much love, hope and strength your way from Reno, Nevada. We love you, Jeff. Zach is looking forward to seeing you soon. You mean so much to him and us.

  63. Sending my love, prayers and support to Jeff! I am In awe of your courage and have always been in awe of your determination to educate and help develop more clinicians and to drive better patient care! My prayers and positive thoughts are with you through this battle.

  64. We love you dearly, Jeff. Oh how lucky you are to have a friend/colleague/brother from another mother like Jeff Gudin. His words ring true and are full of grace, as you truly are Snorkelman forever!

  65. Jeff F,
    You have been in my thoughts and my family is praying for you. I am honored that you’ve shared your story with me. Reading your blog has caused me to reflect on my priorities, my morals, my convictions. I can’t imagine the pride you must have in your family. Jason is a blessing in my life, that the term Friend doesn’t fully capture. Also, we have marveled at how accomplished and fulfilled his sisters have become. The home you and Robin built has cultivated some great citizens. Thank you for demonstrating throughout your life what true heroism looks like.

    I love you.

  66. Jeff,
    You may not remember me, but I was a student class of 2005 at ACP, I appreciated the time that you would give to to us students and Phi Delta Chi brothers at the the college. I remember your story, courage and just great encouraging personality. Praying for you and your family Jeff. You inspire me.

  67. PAINWeek, to me, is synonymous with presentations by Fudin & Gudin. The bow tie, our pharmacist friend wears and the erudite, yet practical wisdom he conveys is the highlight of the annual conference for me. It’s expected and unexpected at the same time. A blessing ultimately to the patients whose providers do a better job managing their pain once they return home to practices. Hero’s wear many things including bow ties. God bless!

  68. Jeff, sending many prayers and hugs to you, Robin and your family. I believe in miracles and pray for one for you.

  69. Jeff I’m so sorry to read this article and hear your latest news. You’ve been in my thoughts and prayers since I found out you had this disease. Again I’m praying for you. Fred Hemeon

  70. No one can predict tomorrow, but it seems like your spirit being defeated can only mean something has changed, because through this whole time you have been a happy warrior! But you can share your feelings anyway they come out. You shared with us everything Professionally, we learned so much from you about you illness, about your body and about what your treatment was trying to do for you. Personally you shared your beautiful family and how love was infusing strength in every member. Maybe you’ll bounce back, but if you want to rest, we will rest with you. Since the whistleblower days, you were my hero then, and you are now.

  71. Jeff, “awed and uplifted” such a perfect description of how we think of you! You have added so much joy and wonderful memories for our family. No words seem enough to express our respect and appreciation. Please know your are in our hearts. You are quite the role model for so many people!

  72. I have been reading many of these blog posts and it has become apparent that you have a wonderful and amazing support system and family. I have fond memories of being at your house with Sarah when we were younger. I remember your saxophone playing and love for Shania Twain. 🙂 Keep fighting! I’ll be praying for you and your family.

  73. Your optimistic spirit is contagious. You have positively, without a doubt touched countless lives. We are all praying for you

  74. Thank you for sharing and keeping us updated. Jeff Fudin- you have always been there for all of us, continuing to educate us even through your journey and you will forever be one of the best pharmacists I have had the pleasure of working with in my 30 year nursing career. There isn’t a week that goes by where I don’t think “what would Dr Fudin say?” I still miss seeing you and your colorful ties roaming our hallways, it’s not quite the same without you there but your spirit and legacy lives on in what you did for our veterans. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for everything! I pray for you for strength and of course always hoping for the miracle….. God bless …

  75. I cannot say enough about what this all means…thank you for this eloquently written blog which so expresses your feelings and thoughts about this gentle man…
    My prayers are with you Jeff F, for your openness, your fighting spirit, your knowledge and your personal story…my love and friendship to you, Robin and all of your children and grandchildren…peace be with you…❤️

  76. Sending continued healing prayers and so much love & appreciation for all you have done for the pharmacy community and patients near and far. You never cease to motivate & inspire me. Thank you ❤️
    Kristin Richter

  77. as always, our love and admiration are with you , Robin, Jason, Sarah, Hannah, Shirah and families! We have many great moments and memories with all of you! Thanks seems insignificant Love you all! Joan

  78. Dr. Gudin, a beautifully written lemonade post. Thanks you for putting into words what we all who know Dr. Fudin are feeling right now. Jeff (F): we love you. Keep fighting the good fight

  79. Jeffrey,
    We love you and you are praying like crazy. You have always brought a smile to my face and joy to my heart. All my kids are checking in on you. You are forever on our hearts. See you around the hood.
    Mary, Harry, Erin, Brian, John and all the little ones!!

  80. Well said, Dr. Gudin. No one compares to Jeff as a clinician, mentor, or fierce advocate for what is right. Ever since I met Jeff as a student in 2017 he has felt like more than a person- he’s a force. While I learned pharmacology, therapeutics, and countless clinical pearls in my pain and palliative care residency the most valuable lessons I learned from Jeff were in how he treats those around him. He is exuberant in his praise of a job well done and kind in his critique when further edits are warranted. Despite his extensive accomplishments he is the first to offer an opportunity to collaborate, open doors for those he believes in, and share a byline. He is generous in his dissemination of knowledge and tireless in his mentorship (truly, messages could come at all hours!) He sees potential and cultivates it. He sees the good in those around him and brings a positive energy (and often muffins or donuts) that brightens a run of the mill day. It’s impossible to distill down years of learning from Jeff- because it continues for years after residency has ended- but I am the clinician and person I am today thanks largely to his incredible influence. As Dr Gudin said, Jeff deserves more time but more importantly- the world deserves more Jeff. For my part, I will do my best to continue to infuse as much “Jeff-ness” into my work as I can. But no one will ever compare.

  81. Jeff! Keep fighting. Your blogs have been excellent to read and inspiring. I’ve shared this with many friends and family. You’ve brought us all laughter, tears and joy. Thank you. We want many more.

    Your family are beautiful and you should be absolutely proud of the people you have raised them to be. Can’t wait to see you play that saxophone !

  82. A beautiful post and tribute. I am continually in awe of your strength and grace through the past year, Jeff. It makes more sense by the day how Sarah became such an incredible human – truly one of the best I’ve ever met. Sending all my love, prayers, and strength to the whole Fudin family.

  83. Thank you Dr Gudin! Dad, you are my mentor, teacher, colleague, friend, father, and Papa (to our son) You have touched the hearts, minds and souls of not only myself but thousands of people around the world. You always show up and you never miss a beat! We are here for you more then ever! L’Chaim!

    1. I am proud to call Hannah my friend and am also very happy to have met and worked with her Dad in my professional life. Dr. Fudin–you have always been there to answer questions, and always give a straightforward and honest answer. That Hannah readily said “I can ask my Dad” speaks volumes about both your relationship and the encyclopedic knowledge you have about seemingly everything! You both will continue to be in my thoughts and prayers.

  84. Somehow, in what seems like the darkest of moments for regular people, you manage to make me laugh out loud while reading! You are Superman & a beacon of how to truly live. Thinking of you with all the light & healing possible for a ‘reverse’ button. I’d like to see a photo of you mowing the lawn again frankly. We love you & are holding the whole family close to our thoughts.

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