Archive for the ‘medicine’ Category

Study: Hydroxychloroquine didn’t protect health care workers

October 1, 2020

Study: Hydroxychloroquine didn't protect health care workers

President Donald Trump’s favorite COVID-19 preventing snake oil, Hydroxychloroquine, has been shown to be ineffective against the novel coronavirus in yet another medical study, this one involving health care workers.

More:

“Trump-touted hydroxychloroquine shows no benefit in COVID-19 prevention: study,” Reuters

“Hydroxychloroquine didn’t prevent Covid-19 among health care workers in new study,” Jacqueline Howard, CNN

“No Evidence That Hydroxychloroquine Can Prevent Covid-19, Concludes New Study,” Ed Cara, Gizmodo

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Linus Pauling’s Vitamin C Fraud

December 4, 2019

Linus Pauling, Nobel-winning chemist, believed that megadoses of vitamin C would prevent colds and cancer. Nope.

More:

“How Linus Pauling duped America into believing vitamin C cures colds,” Megan Thielking, Vox

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De humani corporis fabrica

March 26, 2019

De humani corporis fabrica

in 1543, long before Gray’s Anatomy, Our Bodies Ourselves, or Dr. Oz, Andreas Vesalius had a best-selling medical book, De humani corporis fabrica (“Fabric of the Human Body”). While Amazon has the facsimile, Atlas Obscura visited the New York Academy of Medicine to look at an original edition:

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Missouri Motorcyclists Want to Be Organ Donors

May 4, 2018

Missouri Motorcyclists Want to Be Organ Donors

A bill  introduced in the Missouri State Legislature by veterinarian and state Senator Dan Brown (R) would allow motorcycle riders over the age of 18 to decide whether to wear a helmet. The bill attempts to mitigate the ensuing increase in police, ambulance, and emergency room services by requiring those bareheaded riders to carry $1 million worth of insurance or more. What it won’t do is increase the number of ambulances, EMTs, cops, and emergency rooms in the Show Me State, so other folks will die because some guy on a Harley wants to feel the wind in his hair.

Not there wouldn’t be medical advantages. Repealing the mandatory helmet law would increase the pool of donor organs. Maybe Missouri motorcyclists who choose to forego helmets should be required to register as organ donors.

More:

“Repealing motorcycle helmet laws does have a health benefit: More organ donors,” Fredrick Kunkle, Washington Post

 

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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Henry VIII and the NFL

February 15, 2016

Henry VIII and the NFL
Henry Tudor, aka HRH Henry VIII, King of England, Wales, Ireland  & etc. and Supreme Head of the Church of England, was also a musician, composer, poet, firm believer in marriage, and a devoted sportsman. He liked archery, dressage, hawking and hunting, but most of all he loved jousting. HRH suffered jousting accidents in 1524 and 1525, while he was in his thirties. A later jousting accident in 1536 seriously damaged His Majesty’s leg, and Henry’s tyrannical behavior has often been attributed to that injury.

Not so fast, says Yale’s Dr. Arash Salardini; cumulative jousting blows to the helmeted royal head may have caused Traumatic Brain Injury or CTE, just like helmeted NFL players get.

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Dr. Carson’s Snake Oil

November 4, 2015

Dr. Carson's Snake Oil

One of the so-called “gotcha” questions Carl Quintanilla asked Dr. Ben Carson on CNBC’s October 28th reality show was about his involvement with Mannatech, a shady medical supplement company. “I didn’t have an involvement with them,” the candidate replied. “That is total propaganda, and this is what happens in our society. Total propaganda,” the Doc harrumphed. A great media moment, but denying a verifiable fact is never a good long-term strategy.

Ten months before the debate, Jim Geraghty of the National Review described Ben Carson’s decade-long relationship with the purveyor of unproven “neutraceutical” nostrums, a firm that paid $4 million to settle a false medical claims suit, a firm thouroughly discredited in a 2007 ABC 20/20 investigation.

So Mr. Quintanilla’s debate question should have come as no surprise. Ben Carson shilled for Mannatech on PBS in 2014 and The Wall Street Journal‘s Mark Maremont had outlined Dr. Carson’s decade-long relationship with Mannatech just weeks before the CNBC event.

Since the debate, has Dr. Carson addressed the fact that for 10 years he promoted medical hokum for money? No. He tried to sidestep the issue of his personal and professional ethics by blaming his political opponents for raising this controversy, another clear falsehood. So much for the moral high ground.

More:

“What Ben Carson’s Mannatech Answer Tells Us,” Jim Geraghty, National Review

“Springtime for Grifters,”New York Times

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The Donald’s Diagnosis

July 9, 2015

The Donald's Diagnosis

In a three-page, 881 word statement Monday afternoon, Republican presidential candidate Donald J. Trump clarified statements he made on June 16th. Mexican immigrants, he claimed, are not just drug dealers, killers, and rapists; they’re responsible for “tremendous infectious disease … pouring across the border.”

There would be good reason to fear immigrant-borne epidemics if vaccination rates in Mexico and Central America were not among the highest in the world. The measles vaccination rate in those countries, in fact, is higher than that of the US. “If anything,” points out Peter Weber, “those countries should be concerned about Americans coming down to visit.”

Of course, it’s not like Mr. Trump believes in vaccination … or climate change or Barack Obama’s Hawaiian birth, come to think of it.

So Donald Trump is no physician. Neither is Maria Konnikova, but she offers a very convincing diagnosis of  Donald Trump: Narcissistic Personality Disorder.

Related:

“Donald Trump’s most delusional statement yet: ‘I’ll win the Latino vote,’” Sophia Tesfaye, Salon

“Donald Trump: The Democrats’ Best Campaign Asset,” Bill Humphrey and Stephan Richter, The Globalist

“Donald Trump is the ultimate opportunist: Why his racist theatrics—and surging popularity—explain everything about the modern GOP,” Heather Digby Parton, Salon

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

PMS

April 13, 2015

PMS

“The symptoms aren’t the same for every woman, but again, many of us experience some combination of them. And the incredible part is that almost as soon as a woman’s period begins, the symptoms in many cases vanish: energy levels bounce back, the aches, pains, and bloating go away, and mood lifts again.

An even smaller subset of women, about one in 20, experience even worse symptoms, particularly depression and anger. These women meet the criteria for a condition called premenstrual dysphoric disorder, or PMDD, which is now included in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. It’s basically a very extreme form of PMS.”

— “PMS affects 75 percent of menstruating women — but scientists are still baffled by it,” Julia Belluz, Vox

More:

“Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder: Evidence for a New Category for DSM-5,” Epperson, Steiner, Hartlage, et al., Am J Psychiatry. 2012 May; 169(5): 465–475 via NCBI

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