EppsNet Archive: Medicine

Great Moments in Socialized Medicine: Charlie Gard

If I’m understanding this correctly, socialized medicine really does mean that the government decides if you will live or die, and if your children will be allowed to live or die. I’m glad to see that the current president of the United States is not on board with the idea of a government being able to decide on the life or death of a baby, and to deny the parents of the baby the ability to counter that decree. If we can help little #CharlieGard, as per our friends in the U.K. and the Pope, we would be delighted to do so. — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 3, 2017 This is a good reminder — since there are people who think that “single payer,” i.e., socialized medicine, i.e., the government runs the healthcare system, would be a good thing to have in the United States — that the government,… Read more →

What Would You Charge for an EpiPen?

I don’t mean hypothetically, I mean I literally want to buy an EpiPen from you right now. My kid got stung by a bee, his face is swelling up like a balloon and his lungs are about to shut down. I see a lot of people are mad at Mylan for charging $600 for EpiPens but they don’t seem to be mad at everyone else in the world who won’t sell them an EpiPen at all. Not to mention, $600 for a life-saving treatment seems like a pretty good bargain to me. Hillary Clinton has called for reducing the price of EpiPens. Hillary Clinton has never lifted a finger in a productive enterprise in her life. She will not sell you an EpiPen no matter how much you want or need one. If the amoral profiteers at Mylan have an obligation to sell cheap EpiPens, why doesn’t Hillary Clinton? Why… Read more →

Parents Use “Naturopathic” Remedies to Treat Toddler, Who Dies

A southern Alberta couple accused of allowing their meningitis-infected toddler to die four years ago tried home remedies such as olive leaf extract and whey protein rather than take him to a doctor, a Lethbridge jury heard Monday. David Stephan, 32, and his wife Collet Stephan, 35, have pleaded not guilty to failing to provide the necessaries of life for 19-month-old Ezekiel, who died in March 2012. — CBC News First point: If the name “Ezekiel” shows up on a birth certificate, alert the local authorities to be on the lookout for additional crazy behavior in the future. In a bid to boost his immune system, the couple gave the boy — who was lethargic and becoming stiff — various home remedies, such as water with maple syrup, juice with frozen berries and finally a mixture of apple cider vinegar, horse radish root, hot peppers, mashed onion, garlic and ginger… Read more →

George Washington Died on this Day in 1799

On this date, Dec. 14, in 1799, George Washington, the American revolutionary leader and first president of the United States, died of acute laryngitis at his estate in Mount Vernon, Virginia. He was 67 years old. That is according to History.com. Acute laryngitis is not something that’s likely to kill you today but in 1799, medical “science” was still so medieval that doctors believed that diseases were caused by an imbalance of fluids in the body. In particular, they believed that fevers were caused by an excess of blood and they treated fevers by bleeding the patient. Not surprisingly, draining off almost half of Washington’s blood not only didn’t cure him, it probably killed him. The moral of that story is: When you don’t know what the heck you’re doing, just leave well enough alone. Read more →

25 Concepts to Facilitate Judicious Use of Psychiatric Drugs

I’m not a doctor, nor do I play one on TV, but I did stay at a Holiday Inn Express last night . . . I also took a Colgate University class on medicating for mental health and judicious use of psychiatric drugs. A psychiatric medication is only one useful tool among a collection of useful tools. Remember to also consider non-drug options for therapy. The benefits of psychiatric medications are always accompanied by risk. Become familiar with the potential risk of your medication. Be alert to potential risks that might be intolerable to you. Establishing a diagnosis is a difficult and imperfect task, but it establishes the starting point for determining which treatments are appropriate. Engage your physician or a psychologist in a dialogue regarding the structure of your treatment program. Be an active participant in establishing the structure of that program. Having confidence that your treatment program will… Read more →

10 Seconds is Too Long

“Starts working within 10 seconds.” Ten seconds seems like a long time in 2015. It should start working in 10 nanoseconds. Cyanide works within 10 seconds . . . coincidence? Read more →

See You in Hell, O Ye of Little Faith

[See You in Hell is a feature by our guest blogger, Satan — PE] Greetings from the underworld! I was catching up on Facebook this morning and saw that a woman is going in for brain surgery and her family and friends are asking for prayers for her recovery. Isn’t that overkill — prayer and brain surgery? Why not just pray for her recovery and if she doesn’t make it, you chalk it up to God’s will? Some “true believer” religions, e.g., the Christian Science church, do that. They believe more in prayer than in medicine. They decline medical care because they believe that God can heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse the lepers, cast out demons, etc. as he did in the Bible. These are the folks you hear about when they come up on criminal charges after refusing medical care for their seriously ill children and the… Read more →

Unintended Consequences: The Death of George Washington

In 1799, George Washington fell ill with an infection. Doctors at that time believed that illnesses were caused by an imbalance of fluids in the body. In particular, they believed that fevers were caused by an excess of blood, so they treated Washington’s fever with five separate bloodlettings, which together drained off over half the blood in his body. Not only did the bloodletting not have a healing effect, it probably hastened his death. The human body is a very complex mechanism. Society is a very complex mechanism. You might decide, with good intentions, to tinker with a complex mechanism thinking that even if your intervention doesn’t achieve the full benefit you’re hoping for, it will at least be better than nothing. No — tinkering with a complex mechanism when you have no idea what you’re doing is only going to make things worse. Related Links “In Praise of Passivity”… Read more →

It’s Not That Hard to Be a Saint in the City

Pope John Paul II is being canonized this weekend because of 667,302 prayers for divine intervention, he miraculously answered two, years after he was already dead. What sort of evidence is required to certify that an earthly phenomenon was caused by a dead person? William of Occam would have pointed out that there are simpler explanations for a sick person getting well, e.g., The disease responded to treatment. The disease went into remission. The patient was misdiagnosed and did not really have the disease in the first place. I assure you that if 667,302 people with diagnosed medical ailments prayed to my dog, in at least two of those cases (and more likely, thousands), something unusual would happen. Years ago, a lower GI series revealed that I had a golf ball-sized (4 cm) tumor in my colon. The doctor did a colonoscopy a few days later and the tumor was… Read more →

Is the Medication Working?

“How is your new medication working?” “I can’t tell yet . . . I’m going to read for a few minutes then I’m going to bed.” “How is your new medication working?” “You just asked me that 10 seconds ago.” “You didn’t answer me.” “I DID answer you. I said I CAN’T TELL YET.” “I don’t think it’s working.” Read more →

More People I’m Sick Unto Death Of: Alternative Medicine Advocates

Alternative medicine is not a real thing. You don’t have a choice between medicine and alternative medicine. You have a choice between medicine and Things That Have Not Been Proven to Work. Alternative medicine that works is called “medicine.” Some people tell me that regular doctors don’t know about alternative medicine because they don’t teach it in medical schools. They don’t teach it in medical schools? If I didn’t know anything about my job beyond what I learned in school 25 years ago, I’d be in bad shape. I’d be unemployable. If there are any doctors out there who’ve never learned anything outside of medical school, those are not the doctors you want to be going to. Read more →

Look Out, You Rock ‘n’ Rollers!

My bizness is taking me to Bangalore, India, at the end of the month. I got vaccinated for hepatitis A, hepatitis B, polio, typhoid, tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis. I’m now immune to everything, including your consultations. Read more →

Sick Day

A full day of sleep, systematic overdose of cold medicines, and phlegm reduction techniques (like hocking and nose blowing) that tend to be disruptive to people when practiced non-stop in the workplace can really help in battling a tough cold. It’s also a perfect excuse to close your eyes, curl up in a ball and hide from the world, which is my preferred leisure-time activity anyway . . . Read more →

Diagnosis Please

What disease is indicated when a fecal sample smells of menthol? I’m asking for whoever used the men’s room before me this morning . . . Read more →

Twitter: 2010-08-04

RT @WhitneyCummings: Read that NyQuil lessens the effectiveness of birth control pills. The 2 pills I need to have sex don't work together?! # Read more →

Why Don’t We Do It in the Road?

Experts say the belief that sexual activities can lead to a second heart attack consists of a little bit of truth, but research suggests that it is largely exaggerated. People can have sex after their heart attacks. In fact, the more you exercise — including having sex — the better your odds. As a safety precaution, “You sort of have to test yourself on the sidewalk before you test yourself in the bedroom,” says Dr. Gerald W. Neuberg, cardiologist and director of the intensive care unit at New York-Presbyterian Hospital. — “Is Sex Safe After Heart Attack?” Read more →

The Eternal Footman Held My Coat and Snickered

Rep. John Murtha of Pennsylvania, a longtime fixture on the House subcommittee that oversees Pentagon spending, died after complications from gallbladder surgery, according to his office. He was 77. The Democratic congressman recently underwent scheduled laparoscopic surgery at National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland, to remove his gallbladder. The procedure was “routine minimally invasive surgery,” but doctors “hit his intestines,” a source close to the late congressman told CNN. — CNN.com OMG I HAD THAT SAME OPERATION I COULD HAVE DIED!!! On a lighter note, how ironic is it that the president loses a pro-ObamaCare vote due to medical error in a government-run hospital? Read more →

Twitter: 2010-01-05

Why Bogus Therapies Seem to Work: http://bit.ly/7wtEVf # Read more →

Suck it Up, Liver Cancer Patients!

When the government runs healthcare . . . Liver cancer sufferers are being condemned to an early death by being denied a new drug on the Health Service, campaigners warn. They criticised draft guidance that will effectively ban the drug sorafenib — which is routinely used in every other country where it is licensed. Trials show the drug, which costs £36,000 [$60,000] a year, can increase survival by around six months for patients who have run out of options. The Government’s rationing body, the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (Nice) said the overall cost was “simply too high” to justify the “benefit to patients.” — Mail Online Read more →

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