"May the spirit of Christmas remain in your heart as your profits soar."

Congratulations to Orac

Respectful Insolence is the winner of the best medical/health issues blog at the 2006 Weblog Awards.

Furious Seasons looks at how close these bedfellows really are.

The kicker: He sued his workplace and won over $6 million.

No word yet on whether the patient accepted the offer.

A physician gets paged in the middle of the night, about a lab report showing a WBC above 90,000. Good job getting this patient to the hospital stat.

The common perception is less hours = less tired doctors = less medical errors. However, what also is happening is that we are getting lesser-trained physicians:

The 405 regulations mean residents spend at least 25 percent less time in the hospital. As one doctor who just completed his training put it to me, a five-year surgical residency has suddenly become the equivalent of a three-year one.
PointofLaw.com observes:
The ...

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A booming industry, drawing physicians to this "unneeded specialty", according to this opinion:

As the baby boomers age into elderhood in the next few years, it won't be cosmetic surgeons they need and we can't afford to lose more doctors to this unneeded specialty. But the market is there; it is those who cannot bear the thought of growing old and now it is being expanded to include children.
...

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Will the treatment of pain eventually be tailored to a patient's gender?

When I get a particularly nasty headache, I race for the ibuprofen bottle and down three 200-milligram tablets (a dose long ago approved by my doctor) and get on with whatever I was doing, comforted by the knowledge that I've taken action to dull the pain and that I will feel better soon. When my husband has ...

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So, which specialties are reporting that drug reps aren't visiting them enough?

General surgeons (54%), emergency medicine physicians (49%), anesthesiologists (42%) and orthopedic surgeons (40%) most frequently reported that there are fewer reps than necessary or far too few currently calling on them. Notably, each of these physician groups reported seeing an average of two or fewer reps per week.
It's because most of these fields are busy in ...

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Physicians today operate as small businesses. The story of how rising malpractice premiums are forcing OBs out of business, and hampering recruitment in Maryland:

According to Ma, the longer doctors practice in this litigious country, the more likely it is that they will be named as a defendant in at least one medical malpractice lawsuit.

And win, lose or case dismissed, merely being sued is enough to send ...

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She had to pull him off an electric fence, while getting shocked herself. Bravo.

A patient writes about his experience with the subsequent leg amputation.

Response to the NEJM study suggesting that thorough colonoscopies uncover more polyps and masses. These are some things to keep in mind as you choose a gastroenterologist:

Because colonoscopy typically involves sedation, there is usually no way for a patient to tell how thorough or careful a doctor is being or how long the examination is taking. But there are ways to judge beforehand whether, in general, a ...

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One by one, evidence is shooting down herbal remedies. This time, it's black cohosh for hot flashes:

In a study comparing black cohosh alone or with other botanical therapies with hormone therapy or placebo, there were no significant differences in vasomotor symptom frequency or intensity between women who received black cohosh or placebo, revealed the Herbal Alternatives for Menopause (HALT) trial.

Mammograms before age 50

Will the NHS use a recently Lancet study as a tool to deny screening? Hopefully not, as TBTAM points out that this study proves nothing.

Tell me something I didn't know. retired doc on the Zyprexa scandal.

By trying to decipher what he was saying:

"The brain reacts to reading a phrase such as'he godded me' from the tragedy of Coriolanus, in a similar way to putting a jigsaw puzzle together. If it is easy to see which pieces slot together you become bored of the game, but if the pieces don't appear to fit, when we know they should, the brain becomes excited. By throwing ...

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. . . and wins.

Good move for them. An individual mandate is the approach that makes the most sense.

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