'The Doctors' is back on call for 3rd seasonDr. Lisa Masterson has her work cut out for her on "The Doctors" as the show enters its third season this week with women's health issues an increased priority.
By: Lynn Elber, AP Television Writer, Superior Telegram
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Dr. Lisa Masterson has her work cut out for her on "The Doctors" as the show enters its third season this week with women's health issues an increased priority.
Masterson is being asked to lead the charge.
"I am loving that," said Masterson, an obstetrician and gynecologist. "Being the only female on the show and the voice of women is something I take really seriously."
"The Doctors" is offering its female-skewing audience a segment titled, "Ask Dr. Lisa," which promises candid answers to viewer and studio audience questions, and "The Motherhood Survival Club," with celebrities and average moms sharing their child-rearing experiences.
People want information about everyday concerns, said executive producer Jay McGraw (son of Phil McGraw of "Dr. Phil" fame). Larger health care issues aren't on the agenda.
"Viewers don't have questions for us on health care reform. They have questions for us on, 'What do I do today to get better tomorrow?'" Jay McGraw said.
The show's answers range from home remedies for swimmer's ear to solving the mystery of whether a child's congestion stems from allergies or infection. The show, McGraw recalls, did a segment on the "five colors of snot" to identify which should cause parents to get medical help for their youngster.
"The Doctors," winner of an Emmy Award for best informative talk show, will keep the rest of its medical staff busy as well. Joining Masterson are emergency room physician Dr. Travis Stork, plastic and reconstructive surgery expert Dr. Drew Ordon and pediatrician Dr. Jim Sears.
Stork plays guinea pig in a segment Monday dubbed "Project Unhealthy," swapping his diligent approach to diet and exercise for a sedentary week of fast-food gluttony.
He gained more than a pound a day and saw his blood pressure edge into the pre-hypertensive range. He also acquired a new sense of understanding about how easily a person can fall into a harmful routine, the doctor said.
Hearing from viewers they've helped is welcome medicine for the doctors, Stork and Masterson agree. The syndicated series averaged more than 2.6 million daily viewers last season.
"We have a wonderful platform to change lives and give people really digestible, quick and healthy information they can use" after checking with their own physicians, Masterson said.
Stork gets feedback from patients when he's on duty at Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, Tenn., where he's a faculty physician, and on the street from fans.
"They'll say, 'Dr. Stork, I've lost 25 pounds in the last year since I found your show,' or, 'Dr. Stork, I had a heart attack and had given up hope, but in recovery I turned on your show and it gave me hope.'"