The Real Question

Speaking of times when mainstream medicine doesn’t quite live up to the marketing, a report in the current Mayo Clinic Proceedings finds not only that “many new techniques and medicines are either no more effective than the old ones, or worse;” “many doctors persist in using practices that have been shown to be useless or …

Depends on What You Mean by “Best”

5. The last place, they say, you want to be when you’re sick. Consider George Bush, Sr. – still in a Houston hospital after being admitted just before Thanksgiving for “mild bronchitis.” He’s since had, as they say, a “series of setbacks.” And although he was finally moved out of ICU earlier this week, the …

Better Than…

If you’re in profit-driven medicine, there are lots of ways you can expand your market. You can invent new “diseases” for your drug, device or therapy to treat. Or change the symptoms of old ones. Or repurpose old drugs for different conditions. Or invent new delivery systems for them. Enter Dexcel Pharma with their new …

Cashing In

So much more talk lately of “health care,” and so little of it about either health or care. Rather, the focus is money: Who pays how much? Who profits? And it underscores a profound tension: While health care providers – dentists included – dedicate themselves to their patients’ health needs, they’re also running businesses. There’s …

The “Alternative” Controversy

Originally posted 19 June 2009 There’s been a lot of talk lately about the AP Impact series bashing “alternative medicine”. And it got us to thinking about how this term is kind of a straw man. onlyforward/Flickr Self-proclaimed skeptics like to say there is only medicine: that which works. Everything else, they argue, is non-medicine, …

The Call for Preventive Medicine

Originally posted 16 January 2009 In the ongoing debates about US health care reform, you hear an increasing number of calls for a shift from crisis-based medicine to preventive medicine. (We noted the dental version of it earlier this week in our comment on the recent Lancet editorial on the topic.) The basic idea is …

Quick Fixes for Health?

No such thing, if you consider that health is much more than the absence of sickness. It is wholeness. And that is a thing of nature, our essential being. Our bodies evolved to strive to maintain it. When it’s undermined, natural and nontoxic therapies can spur our bodies’ inherent abilities to self-regulate and heal. Quick …

Recommended Reading: Against All Those “Health Screenings”

There’s been a lot more noise lately about the overuse of medical testing – and over-treatment and over-medicalization in general. Frankly, we’re glad to see it. And we hope it will finally lead to some change (long overdue!). The latest outcry has included an excellent opinion piece that ran a few weeks ago in the …

Unhealthy Satisfaction

We’ve said it before, but we’ll say it again: More medicine is not necessarily better medicine. It’s just more medicine – a point highlighted by a recent study on “patient satisfaction” in Archives of Internal Medicine: The authors – four family medicine doctors at UC Davis – suggest that in a healthcare marketplace in which …

Stat!: Are Americans Getting Healthier?

Annual health care spending in the US: $2 trillion Annual cost of treating chronic illness in the US: $1.5 trillion Yes. Really. And nearly half of us have at least one chronic health condition, including Chronic pain – 116 million adults Arthritis – 50 million Type 2 diabetes – 25.6 million “Cancer survivorship” – 12 …