A pediatrician's take on the breast cancer screening issue, responding to yesterday's post and today's breast screening MRI news:

As a physician, I know testing is not the be all end all, even for women. And I don't think every woman should get an MRI.

But, as a women, I can't imagine waiting 4-6 months for a retest - I'd rather the biopsy or MRI. I know ...

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One disgruntled Pfizer rep thinks so.

This is being suggested as a way to decrease the incidence of bile duct injuries - as this is one of the largest reasons for malpractice lawsuits within general surgery. I wonder if any of the surgeons who read this blog can comment:

Cholangiograms have a lot of potential, but "they have not been adopted as a routine part of most surgeons' practices," says Lawrence Way, a surgeon at ...

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The WSJ Health Blog was there, talking about the carnival-like atmosphere of the exhibit hall. Probably like Pri-Med, taken to the extreme.

Great post on the ills of a single-payer system. Money quote:

If you were to get in a scrap with a mean old junkyard dog and he managed to sink his teeth into your scrotum, from that point forward the dog is totally in charge. You may have the complete use of the rest of your body and even though, from a real estate point of view, the dog ...

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Shadowfax tries to decipher what happened to her.

OnThePharm takes a trip to a Nicaraguan pharmacy.

Malpractice caps in Texas are causing a problem. So many doctors want to work there, there is a certification backlog:

So many doctors are seeking licenses to practice in Texas that the board is facing a certification backlog. As Express-News business columnist David Hendricks recently detailed, the board processed 2,446 licenses in fiscal year 2001. In fiscal year 2006, the number jumped to 4,026.

More doctors who ...

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Today, the ACS recommends MRI screening for women at high risk. The definition of high risk is not totally clear, and there is no mortality data on MRI screening. However, it seems there is a movement towards MRI breast screening in the general population.

This would relieve some pressure off the radiologists, since mammograms can be inclusive, leading to frequent malpractice lawsuits.

Update:
Medpundit ...

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As Dr. Charles puts it, disturbingly interesting.

A high school experiment debunks Ribena's claim of vitamin C.

The outlook is grim. Sid Schwab with more:

In the case of colon cancer which has spread to the liver, the outlook is not good. On average, survival is in the range of six months. There are exceptional circumstances, for instance when it appears than only one tumor nodule is growing in the liver, in which case removing it and giving chemotherapy may prolong life. Unfortunately that's rare: ...

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Stanley Feld summarizes how UnitedHealth is one of the big problems in our health care system today.

Many of them are used to treat HIV. Sad.

Lawyers, worried about the recent study suggesting how attractive people can sway juries? What if the physician-defendant you're cross-examining is too attractive for your liking?

No fear, here's how to overcome this.

In the DEA's fight against chronic pain treatment, patients are often the losers:

"Doctors are trained to treat patients, not to be detectives," says Dr. James N. Campbell, a Johns Hopkins University neurosurgeon specializing in pain, who will be another witness for Dr. Hurwitz. He says that doctors have already reacted to the D.E.A. crackdown by changing the way they deal with the many Americans "” at least 50 ...

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A story from the Washington Post about the ambiguity of mammogram readings. "Wait and see", or the conservative, evidence-based approach, clearly is taking a hit in this piece. A breast MRI to confirm an ultimately harmless finding is demanded by the patient.

Essays like this, which perpetuate the falsehood that more testing equals better medicine, simply serve to further drive up health care costs. (via ...

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Vision problems forced the career change - but his malpractice history, and Google, is scaring off potential spa clients.

Cardiologist Dr. Wes looks at the real-world implications. Bob Centor also chimes in. Here's what the NEJM thinks.

Combine high cost of living with this, and no wonder they're having trouble recruiting:

Massachusetts continues to decline as a place to practice medicine, the Massachusetts Medical Society reports today. The deteriorating environment has led to a shortage of physicians and reduced access to care that are a cause for concern as the state implements its new healthcare law, the group warns. . .

. . . Low ...

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