Is anyone else tired of those “Low-T” commercials?
Low-T is the catchy nickname marketers have given to low testosterone levels in men. The ads urge men who are feeling tired or who have a low sex drive to ask their doctors about a testosterone supplement.
Injections, gels or nasal sprays—there’s something for everyone! And they’re buying. Over a billion and a half dollars is spent every year on testosterone supplements.
Well, last week the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued a warning against the over prescribing of these products to men. Testosterone supplements have only been approved by the FDA … Continue reading
I loved this clip from Jimmy Kimmel Live. He says:
I feel like we’re headed in the wrong direction…Here in LA there are schools in which 20% of the students aren’t vaccinated because parents here are more scared of gluten than they are of smallpox…
Related post: Penn and Teller give a shout out to vaccinations
… Continue reading
I’ve mentioned in several posts that I think screening tests, especially mammograms, are used too widely in this country. Every woman over age 40? Every year? It’s overkill.
Even the US Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) only recommends a screening mammogram every other year between the ages of 50 and 75.
But most women still think the yearly mammogram is health care at its finest.
Related post: Screening mammograms—benefits vs harms
The British medical journal, Lancet, recently published a study that shows women who are better informed about the risks and benefits of screening mammograms are less likely to … Continue reading
I recently posted about health care’s problem of unreliable, biased and sometimes downright fraudulent research.
It’s important that we are aware of the scope of the problem, because so much medical treatment—screenings, drugs, surgical procedures—is being sold based on these untrustworthy reports.
And more stories are coming forward.
Over on HealthNewsReview.org, the health journalism watchdog blog, Gary Schwitzer highlights two articles:
This study revealed that poorly designed or fraudulent research still gets into “peer-reviewed” journals, despite the FDA. What is a … Continue reading
I’ve written a couple of posts about medical and dental tourism, and I was recently invited to post the following infographic. It has some interesting statistics as well as links to three of the most popular health tourism websites. Sláinte, Frugal Nurse
Source: NursingSchoolHub.com… Continue reading
I read this article in a British newspaper: Medical experts furious that doctors will be paid to dole out ‘risky’ statins
It could mean four in 10 adults, including most of those in late middle age, are put on regular doses in a move that “medicalises” healthy people, leaving them at risk of side-effects including diabetes and memory loss.
Klim McPherson, professor of public health at Oxford University, said: “This is shocking. Incentivising doctors to dish out drugs to patients who may not benefit and more importantly may suffer side effects is wrong and unethical.”
Could that happen here?
It … Continue reading
I’ve seen several recent news stories on kids and allergies.
For some time, it’s seemed to me that the incidence of childhood allergies, especially serious ones like peanut allergies, have been on the increase.
Food labels carry warnings about possible peanut contamination; schools ban snacks or sack lunches containing peanuts; some airlines have designated “peanut-free” zones. It’s crazy and disturbing. And do you know how much an Epi-Pen costs??
Aaron Carroll, MD, the pediatrician who blogs at The Incidental Economist had a good post on the subject: By shielding infants from stuff, we may be making allergies worse
Since 2000, … Continue reading
I’ve posted many times about the problems with the multi-billion-dollar supplement industry, and there was a good Op-Ed piece on Live Science yesterday that supported my own opinion: These 5 Supplements Do Nothing For Alzheimer’s, Despite Claims
The article was co-written by two physicians, both geriatric (aging) specialists.
The Latin axiom “caveat emptor,” let the buyer beware, applies to people of all ages. But in our medical practices, we have witnessed the incredible dependence elderly patients have on herbal supplements to help them (in their minds, at least) prevent and manage chronic illness.
When we see patients, we ask them
… Continue reading
More and more frequently I come across stories of patients who have inadvertently received care from “out-of-network” providers. And it can be a costly mistake.
When you are billed for the costs that your insurance company has denied, that’s called “balance billing.”
My insurance company doubles the deductible for out-of-network care; instead of $10,000, our deductible becomes $20,000. But insurance companies aren’t required by law to put a limit on a patient’s out-of-pocket spending when it comes to out-of-network care. In theory, you could get hit with tens of thousands of dollars in medical bills even though you have insurance.… Continue reading
A few days ago, Vox.com published an interview with Stanford researcher John Ioannidis, MD. Dr. Ioannidis is a meta-researcher, that is he researches research.
How accurate are research studies? How are they designed? How many subjects are involved? Can the results be duplicated? How do the results from one study compare with another?
These are the types of questions Dr. Ioannidis attempts to answer, as well as leading the effort to fix what is broken in our medical research system.
Because it is broken.
As the article states:
Medical research is in bad shape. Fraud, bias, sloppiness, and inefficiency are
… Continue reading