“Don’t look back.
Something may be gaining on you.”
-#6 of Satchel Paige’s Guides to Good Living
Click on the date to view the entire blog.
February 1 – From Z to A – Zika virus to autism with G and F for gluten-free diet in the middle.
February 15 – The “single blood drop” lab test that never panned out (my largest pile of misplaced enthusiasm and the poorest stock tip ever) and “Uber Doctor”. The founder of Theranos was banned from engaging in any laboratory business for 2 years.
March 1 – “Smith” as the most likely name of your doctor went from #1 in 1930-39 to #4 in 1980-89, replaced by “Patel”, “Shah”, and “Lee”. The largest contingent (20%) of foreign-born U.S. physicians came from India during that period.
March 15 – Health apps (and now Alexa apparently) are not “secure” since they transmit data about your personal use back to company headquarters (at least, not to the NSA … we think)
April Fools Day – TrumpaCare Health Plan Revealed. It doesn’t read quite as tongue-in-cheek now as it did then.
April 15 – The bathroom bill and how diclofenac killed all the vultures in India and why that matters.
May 1 – Multiple private insurance companies pull out of Obamacare (ACA) which somehow continued to be attacked as a “socialistic, single-payor” scheme.
May 15 – Medical fun facts about three presidents and Obama’s prediction in third grade about becoming President and “visiting all the places in Indonesia”.
June 1 – Placebos work better as therapy if they cost more. The Chinese reduced adult myopia by getting the kids to play outside more often while 40% of U.S. toddlers (under 2 yo.) already play with an electronic mobile device.
June 15 – Annual update on sun and bugs … actually anti-sun and anti-bugs.
July 15 – Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT) of opioid/heroin addiction works pretty well without making the patient lie down. So, more beds are NOT needed and are NOT the answer.
August 1 – Five reasons that playing video games improves learning in kids… IF the content is right.
September 1 – Various “redefinitions” of medical “truths” about teen age pregnancies, blood pressure medicines, and lead exposure.
September 15 – How to be an appropriately skeptical reader of media reports of “medical advances” … aka “Beware of Percentages” in hyped reports of improved outcomes.
October 1 – “Light up or not.” Pros and cons of recreational marijuana referenda on 8 state ballots.
October 15 – Asking your doctor to make you a “DNT ” after “a certain age”. Nine medical tests that can be optional after 65 because their benefits are elusive and results may cause more problems than they are worth. Choose Wisely website.
November 1 – A really scary clown CAN kill you. The same physiological mechanism may have caused Debbie Reynolds’ sudden death while she was planning Carrie Fisher’s funeral.
November 15 – Real health CARE reform is the way to improve on the health care INSURANCE reform of Obamacare.
December 1 – Less old people are leaving their car keys in the refrigerator while Germany and Japan residents gain more weight in a year than we do.
December 15 – Though the stakes are high (lack of health insurance causes 45,000 unnecessary deaths in the U.S.) it will probably take two years for Trump and the Republican Congress to turn back the accomplishments of Obamacare.
I am hoping that as an unintended consequence of their reframing of the ACA, the law will actually be improved.
HAPPY NEW YEAR from an eternal optimist.