The cost of skipping medications: "$100 billion in direct health care costs and $1.5 billion in lost patient earnings each year."

Now that's ridiculously good medical access.

Loss leaders: "Increased numbers of uninsured patients coming into Florida emergency rooms may worsen overcrowding, adversely affect quality of care and lead more ERs to close their doors." (via a reader tip)

Medpundit looks at how the Medicare cut affects her. "How does that translate into day to day life? It means that my staff didn't get a cost of living raise this year. It means that I'll have to drop their health insurance if the premiums increase. And it means that I'm working harder - double booking patients when I can and adding an extra half day to my work ...

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Behold the super-soaker to remove ear wax.



"D.K. (a family and emergency physician) assessed the utility of the Super Soaker Max-D 5000. He was surprised to note that it was able to deliver a superbly pressured narrow stream of water equivalent to, or perhaps exceeding, the quality of that achieved with standard ear-syringing instruments. The owner of the Super Soaker Max-D 5000 was sought out; after ...

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NY Times on the NJ state medical school corruption scandal. "The most egregious wrong, to our mind, was the double-billing of Medicaid for the care provided to poor people. Doctors were billing for the services they provided at university clinics, and the university was separately billing for the same services, generating almost $5 million in extra payments at latest count. What makes this double-billing especially reprehensible is that university ...

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Measuring brain activity to treat chronic pain. "In the experiment, Tibbits goes into a brain scanner. Her first task is to make her injury hurt as much as possible. This shows the researchers what brain areas are activated by her pain, and that gets translated into the rising flame. A flame, says Mackey, is an excellent representation of pain.

Tibbits then uses breathing techniques, pleasant thoughts, muscle relaxation ...

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Magnetic bracelets are useless. "Magnet therapies which are claimed to cure conditions ranging from back pain to cancer have no proven benefits, according to a team of US researchers."

How generic medications are hurting Pfizer. "For years, even as rivals hedged their bets by developing high-priced specialty medicines and vaccines free from generic competition, Pfizer threw its energy into remedies for common ailments. Among them were Celebrex for pain, Zoloft for depression and Viagra for impotence. Its key weapon was marketing: television ads for the public and an army of sales representatives urging doctors to prescribe Pfizer pills.

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NY Times on Sharon's stroke. "While some experts supported the extraordinary treatments that were used to try to save Mr. Sharon's life, and others opposed them, all agreed that Mr. Sharon's Israeli doctors were working at the very edges of medicine's lifesaving capacities, with little experience and few studies to guide them."

America's fittest cities.

Some physicians are so fearful of the DEA oversight of narcotics, they don't even apply for prescribing privileges of opioids:

Patient 1, a young man, became acutely ill with an aggressive but highly treatable cancer that caused severe acute chest pain. Since he had to make quick and extremely difficult decisions about his treatment options, he sought advice and pain medication from his trusted primary care physician -— only ...

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A reporter from the Roanoke Times on medical blogs. "Do any doctors, nurses or other medical people in Western Virginia write a blog? It's time and you've got to expect something like that would be well-read. (I would read it. Would you?)

So, this is my appeal. Might a prof in Blacksburg throw back the curtain cloaking the new medical school? Would a hospital P.R. person share tales of ...

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I just discovered that WebMD has their own set of medical and health blogs.

Why I don't treat chronic pain: ". . . doctors have been sued for undertreating pain and jailed for overtreating it."

A walk-in clinic doctor is taking heat for not notifying patients of his retirement. His justification:

Fegley, who decided to retire the first week of November, said he didn'’t think he should be expected to notify all his patients because he does not consider himself a primary care doctor. His patients "all have primary care doctors," he said. "I’m just there when their doctors are unavailable."
Just a reflection of how ...

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Update on the crusade against Dr. Bennett. "Bennett, reached by phone, said it's more of a 'cat and mouse' game the board is putting him through."



(via This Makes Me Sick)

This doctor is on call every day.

Culture, not money, is what influences those who choose home remedies. "When older minorities turn to home remedies to cure what ails them, it's more likely to be a reflection of their cultural beliefs rather than an inability to afford or access mainstream medicine, new research suggests.

The study found that many older people of all races tended to use home remedies for chronic ills, but black seniors were ...

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