Complementary medicine therapies drawn from traditional practices, ranging from massage and vitamin supplements to acupuncture and meditation, are today becoming broadly incorporated into mainstream medicine as more scientific studies validate their efficacy
But naturopathy, a belief system built on the concept that “nature knows best” when it comes to healing, takes it a step further.
Practitioners use a host of pseudoscientific techniques including energy healing and homeopathy that can be not only ineffective, but dangerous. Continue reading
Toward the stars: On humility and pain in medicine | Michael Kaplan, MD | Physician | June 25, 2017
Whereas the eyes of our medical forefathers were turned toward the heavens in search of answers to seemingly unknowable questions — how does blood move around the body? — my eyes, and those of my colleagues, are focused intensely on computer screens.
We’re preoccupied not by concepts or theory, but data analysis and randomized controlled trials.
In an age of cardiac catheterizations and endoscopic ultrasound, we’ve become so firmly rooted in the objective, the concrete, that we’ve lost our sense of wonder for the subjectivities in our world and their biological underpinnings. Continue reading
The corruption of modern academic medicine — How your doctor was bought – by Jason Fung, MD – July 2017
Many doctors are genuinely puzzled why much of the general public does not trust what they say.
Many doctors blame ignorance and the media for these phenomena, but this is simply a patronizing attitude. The truth is this. Many people simply do not believe doctors anymore.
But why? The answer is $$$$. Simply, the public does not trust doctors because they know that many doctors, especially those in academic medicine and the universities are on the take. Continue reading
All life on a rotating planet is ruled by circadian rhythms.
Chronobiology research has brought the importance of healthy sleep to the fore, and we have made great strides in understanding jetlag. But if we stop there, we’re missing the larger point, which is that our bodies in all their complexity live and die by the clock.
Plenty of good science has been done, but the applications of this research, especially in medicine, are just beginning. Continue reading
A huge gift boosts alternative therapies at a med school, sparking outrage – ByUsha Lee McFarling – September 20, 2017
It’s becoming perfectly clear that money trumps (pun intended) science these days.
When billionaires Susan and Henry Samueli this week announced a $200 million donation to the University of California, Irvine to launch a new health program dedicated to integrative medicine, they drew a standing ovation and glowing coverage.
But for those who have been watching the steady creep of unproven therapies into mainstream medicine, the announcement didn’t go over quite as well. Continue reading
Harvard “Chocolate Study” is Junk Science By Jamie Wells, M.D. — July 11, 2017
Somewhere along the way critical reasoning and a healthy dose of skepticism were supplanted by tacit acceptance as fact press releases and publications generated from academic institutions, those “perfectly” credentialed and arbitrarily deemed scientifically “pure.”
Yet, with the current competition today, it is no surprise corner-cutting and mastery of how to get published has evolved statistical tricks for those in the know to optimize their chances.
The latest example from Harvard will be discussed here. Since publishers are enabling these behaviors, arming the media and public with tools to separate the wheat from the chaff is essential. Continue reading
About four years ago, the University of California, Davis developed a unique and novel tool kit to expand access to sophisticated and thoughtful pain care, in addition to tackling the opioid abuse epidemic.
The Center for Advancing Pain Relief (CAPR) has created a broad educational agenda to improve pain management.
“It is our contention that responsible opioid prescribing programs alone are not the answer, as this becomes synonymous with reductions in plausible opioid prescribing but leaves pain conditions untreated,” Dr. Copenhaver, MD, MPH, associate director of the Center for Advancing Pain Relief (CAPR) said. Continue reading
It is our view that the diagnostic terms post laminectomy syndrome (ICD-9 code 722.8) or failed back syndrome are inaccurate, misleading, can be construed as disparaging, and should be discarded.
Disparaging to whom? I suspect doctors do not like any term that insinuates their methods failed, no matter how true that is.
These authors couldn’t even bring themselves to call this painful syndrome by its *real* name: it’s not called “failed back syndrome”, but rather “failed back surgery syndrome” because, in this case, it is the surgery that failed, not the back. Continue reading
‘Population-Based,’ Meet ‘Patient-Centered’ | Managed Care Magazine Online |MANAGED CARE | May 2012 – by Timothy Kelley
It’s hard to believe we’ve made so little progress on reconciling these two ideas since 2012.
With the coming increase in the elderly population who often have multiple interacting health problems, population medicine might end up being of little use.
Health care doesn’t lack for big ideas, even if their definitional boundaries do sometimes get fuzzy.
Take “population-based medicine” and “patient-centered health care,” for example. Both are phrases we hear and read every day, and maybe even believe in. But do they coincide or collide? Continue reading
How do you explain the difficulties of risk prediction with patients?
This is a difficult but necessary exercise. So much of what we do in medicine is based on risk.
Indeed, fully informing patients about the risks and benefits of their care depends on having at least a simple understanding of risk. Continue reading