David Lhowe, MD is an Orthopedic Trauma and Hip & Knee Replacement surgeon in the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Massachusetts General Hospital, and Assistant Clinical Professor of Orthopedic Surgery at Harvard Medical School.
Sandwiched between its gigantic neighbors, China and India, the tiny nation of Bhutan is making a rapid transition from an isolated kingdom to a modern Asian democracy. Its 600,000 residents are almost exclusively Buddhist, and are dispersed over a landscape that remains largely forested with relatively little arable terrain. The population clusters in valleys, separated by Himalayan mountain barriers which have only recently become connected by two-lane roads. Through most of its history the country has been isolated from even its closest neighbors, and has only opened to Western tourists in the last 20 years. While visiting Bhutan from the United States is now possible it doesn’t come cheaply. The Bhutanese government charges US citizens a substantial daily tax for the duration of their visits. Continue reading