Two years ago, former President Barack Obama announced the Precision Medicine initiative in his State of the Union Address. The initiative aspired to a “new era of medicine” where disease treatments could be specifically tailored to each patient’s genetic code. This resonated soundly in cancer medicine. Patients can already manage their cancer with therapies that target the specific genes that are altered in their particular tumor. For ...

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After Michael Uvanni’s older brother, James, was diagnosed with a deadly form of skin cancer, it seemed as if everyone told the family what they wanted to hear: Have hope. You can beat this, and we are here to help. The brothers met with doctors at a half-dozen of the country’s best hospitals, all with impressive credentials that inspired confidence. Michael Uvanni was in awe when he visited the University of Texas ...

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As New Jersey Governor Chris Christie takes the lead in crafting the Trump administration’s response to the opioid crisis, he and his colleagues need to understand that we can’t fix the problem until we kick our long-term addiction to the war on drugs and accept overdoses for what they are: a health ...

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I met “Samantha” during my first rotation as an intern. She was a strong-willed and optimistic lady who weighed about 100 pounds. She was dependent on a tube in her stomach for nutrition, and she appeared 10 or 15 years older than her age of 44 years. Pictures of her children were next to her bed. I asked her how we could help her. She cried. Her husband of 20 years ...

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Why does the universe have conscious beings? The physical and biological laws of nature do not seem to explain the existence of conscious creatures such as humans. Neuroscience has done well to explain many of our behaviors, illnesses and medical therapies based on purely physical and observable rules. But no one has ever measured consciousness. And yet it appears fundamental to whether my patient will recover from their disease. After 15 ...

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In medicine, there exists a dangerous condition that affects millions of Americans each year but is woefully underdiagnosed. It affects how long we live and how much we pay for health care. It impacts the way doctors treat us and care for us. Yet, many health care providers are reluctant to acknowledge that this condition exists. That condition is bias in medicine. We know that bias and discrimination kill. In politics, the ...

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An excerpt from Crooked: Outwitting the Back Pain Industry and Getting on the Road to Recovery. Near my office, there’s a breakfast-and-lunch joint where strangers sit down at shared tables. When Joseph, an attorney ...

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Test your medicine knowledge with the MKSAP challenge, in partnership with the American College of Physicians. A 29-year-old woman is evaluated for a 5-day history of nodules over her lower extremities. She reports that she regularly visits a local spa that uses whirlpool footbaths during her pedicure procedures; she always shaves her legs with a razor before these visits. Medical history is unremarkable, ...

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Sometimes It’s important to know the news behind the news: the comments and the cautions that don’t get into the article that the public gets to read. It’s the sort of thing that keeps me up at night: trying to convey the reality, while realizing what most people want to hear is the hope. That’s the problem I have with a story posted on a major news network website ...

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4.9 million — yes, million — people are diagnosed with skin cancer every year in the United States. It costs an estimated $8.1 billion —with a “B — to treat those skin cancers, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). Do I have your attention? I hope so. The problem is we don’t have enough attention. There is no other way to ...

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