Doctors only want the NHS to fund evidence-based therapies. Makes sense to me:

In a letter, reproduced in the Times, they raised concern the NHS is backing "unproven or disproved treatments", like homeopathy.

One doctor said the NHS was funding "bogus" therapies when patients struggled to get drugs like Herceptin.

He restrains an unruly passenger on a plane:

Dr. Robert Rey, a plastic surgeon who practices martial arts, told The Associated Press he got out of his seat and intervened when he heard the man make a "big noise" as he pushed a female flight attendant toward the cockpit.

"When you get a black belt, at that stage your brain just clicks into action," the doctor said. "I ...

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Thanks Mr. Studdert for giving us the study that highlights the glaring flaws of our malpractice system. No matter how it is spun, the numbers clearly speak for themselves:

Finally, the fact that payment was made in 19 percent of claims with little-to-no evidence of error and 32 percent in a slight-to-modest evidence of error is evidence enough that the tort system is woefully inadequate from the physician's ...

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The Oprah effect

People trust Oprah so much, they're willing to plunk down thousands of dollars on cosmetic procedures, despite the medical risk:

But a number of doctors say such an impact is more problematic when the beauty treatment being featured is medical, with possible complications, rather than simply a cosmetic or spa procedure. In its desire to be the first show to introduce the latest anti-wrinkle options, "Oprah" sometimes features treatments before ...

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A reader on an "ask a doctor"-type forum wonders why doctors order so many tests and referrals. The response:

You are not alone in wondering what is going on in our health-care system. Doctors and hospitals are more concerned with liability prevention than providing consumer-friendly health care.

But don't despair and don't give up. There are good doctors out there who still care and they need to be ...

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The effects of poor Medicare reimbursement hits home in this particular case.

Businessweek profiles Dr. David Eddy, an evidence-based medicine crusader.

Or could it be because of overscreening and overtesting - something that has been shown to exist.

Yes, the family is suing the salon.

What a great idea.

Not a good start for this dog of a drug. First the UK, now Germany.

Lyme wars

Non-evidence-based therapies, such as months to years of antibiotics, are coming under fire.

USA Today tries to get a straight answer and finds that it's nearly impossible. The reason is because of the insurance companies:

USA TODAY's story on the difficulties consumers encounter in getting information on health care prices leaves the impression that doctors are unwilling to disclose their prices. In truth, a typical doctor might have 20 or more prices for the same procedure "” because each insurer ...

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PCPs are starting to protect their turf against this growing trend. Malpractice lawsuits will kill off these clinics soon enough.

Blog, MD hosts the best of pediatric blogging.

Not the thrust of this article, but I found this point interesting:

With this in mind, the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center's Presbyterian Hospital installed alcohol-wash dispensers in every room and allowed nurses to ban doctors who don't wash up from entering patients' rooms. Yet more than one-quarter of UPMC's doctors still haven't gotten the message . . .

One major cause for such huge gaps in care is ...

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I'm happy that this study is getting some play in the media. Essentially, many of the "routine" tests done on a physical are not recommended (the whole concept of a "routine physical" is controversial - but that's for another discussion). Merenstein concludes:

# 37 percent of checkups included a urinalysis.

# 9 percent of checkups included an electrocardiogram.

# 8 percent of checkups included ...

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No surprise to anyone reading this blog. BTW, it's good to see our old friend Dr. Merenstein back in the news:

During your next routine medical checkup you have at least a 43 percent chance of undergoing an unnecessary medical test, a new study shows.

It's not like you're getting something for nothing. If you're not having symptoms, and your doctor has no reason to suspect ...

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He remembers his first time and opines:

Medical students have to learn. Simulators are available, but they are not as good as the real thing. It is a difficult area. From what I hear from medical students, they get much less opportunity to do personal examinations than I did.

I do not know what happens nowadays to patients under anaesthetic. But the next time you are having an operation, ...

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No surprise about the pharmaceutical influence over prescribing practices:

At a recent speech before another society, the American College of Cardiology, its new president, Dr. Steven E. Nissen of the Cleveland Clinic, suggested that the medical profession had become addicted to industry money just as the nation was addicted to foreign oil.
There really should be no reason to treat hypertension with any brand-name drugs. The exception is the ...

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