Blog Profile / Slate: Medical Examiner

Filed Under:Health
Posts on Regator:392
Posts / Week:0.9
Archived Since:June 9, 2008

Blog Post Archive

E-Cigarettes Might Be the Best Addiction to Have

On Jan. 11, 1964, Dr. Luther Terry released the first report of the Surgeon General’s Advisory Committee on Smoking and Health. The report concluded that there was not merely an association between smoking and cancer, but a causal relationship. It was a watershed moment. Show More Summary

The FDA Should Approve Drugs Based on Evidence, Not Emotions

On Dec. 7, the New York Times ran an inspiring, dangerous story about Celine Ryan, a 50-year-old whose advanced colon cancer was successfully treated with experimental immunotherapy. Inspiring, because researchers repeatedly rejected...Show More Summary

Trump Isn’t an Anti-Vaxxer. He’s a Slow Vaxxer.

Anti-vaxxers think they finally have a friend in the White House. Donald Trump has voiced concerns about vaccines for at least a decade, and, in August, he reportedly attended a fundraiser with disgraced and delicensed doctor Andrew Wakefield, whose discredited research helped launch the anti-vaccination panic. But Trump isn’t quite an anti-vaxxer. Show More Summary

We Know How to Treat Opioid Addiction

When I was 22 years old, I was treated for an addiction to opioids. In the five years since, I wake up each morning and scan my news filters to read about some of the 78 people who die each day from overdose. Which depressed Rust Belt city was hit today? The opioid crisis is one of few in public health that, despite all efforts, continues to worsen. Show More Summary

Is PMS Real?

The following is an excerpt from The Geography of Madness: Penis Thieves, Voodoo Death, and the Search for the Meaning of the World’s Strangest Syndromes. One day, while I was researching my recent book about cultural syndromes across the world, I was talking to my wife when she said, “Well, I got my period. Show More Summary

Don’t Give Kids Under 12 Cold and Cough Medicine

This story originally appeared on the Conversation and is reprinted here with permission. The common cold season is here, and if you have children, you will likely feel their suffering from these annoying upper respiratory tract viral infections. Show More Summary

The Major Fall

Leonard Cohen seemed to be at peace with the idea of his own mortality, and he wished only that death not be too “uncomfortable.” Cohen died in his sleep last week, and we can hope it was painless. But the actual cause of his death was not simple old age. Show More Summary

Homeopathic Medicines Will Carry Labels Saying They’re Unscientific

The Federal Trade Commission just cracked down on an unusual product that has long enjoyed exemption from regulation: homeopathic drugs. Available everywhere from Whole Foods to CVS, homeopathic products are advertised as an effective way to treat a wide range of conditions. Show More Summary

Our Patients Need Us

This election and its results have illuminated a dark underbelly of American society: President-elect Donald Trump’s campaign may have drawn in voters who felt forgotten, but it also fed on racism, misogyny, homophobia, anti-Semitism, and Islamophobia. Show More Summary

The Five Stages of Grief Aren’t Real, but Trump Anxiety Is

Many people seem to be mourning and grieving the U.S. presidential election results as if it were a death in their own family. In my liberal Boston-area neighborhood, I’ve encountered many people in all black, as if en route to a funeral. Show More Summary

How to Talk About Mental Illness Without Relying on Strength

Earlier this month, Donald Trump stood in front of a crowd of veterans and suggested that soldiers who take their own lives are not “strong” and that they “can’t handle it.” The precise words of the man who evaded military service by...Show More Summary

Do Acetaminophen’s Risks Outweigh the Benefits?

This story is reproduced with permission from The Conversation. Acetaminophen has been around for more than 50 years. It’s safe and many guidelines recommend it as the go-to treatment. At least, that’s the conventional view of the drug. Show More Summary

We’ve Misdiagnosed the Problem With Donald Trump

Lately, I have been having dreams about Donald Trump. In one, I’m in the audience as he walks out onto the debate stage, and the version of Hillary Clinton who follows him out is bald and deranged. In another, I’m waiting for Kanye West to perform at Madison Square Garden, but Trump does instead. Show More Summary

Is Your Birth Control Making You Depressed?

Here’s how I usually start a conversation with a patient about birth control: None of the methods I have for you today are perfect. We don’t have perfect, though I wish we did. We have pretty good; we have good enough; we have not-great. Show More Summary

The Medical Complexity of “Late-Term” Abortions

Wednesday night, most of America heard Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton discuss, among other things, late-term abortion. Their positions came as no surprise. Clinton reiterated her position that late-term abortions, which are performed...Show More Summary

The Right to Remain HIPAA-Protected

Ahmad Rahimi, the man suspected of carrying out the bombings in New York and New Jersey last month, appeared in New Jersey Superior Court to plead not guilty to several charges against him. Since he’s still in the hospital recovering from injuries, his appearance was via video conference. Show More Summary

It’s OK to Speculate About Trump’s Mental Health

Before Donald J. Trump came on the electoral scene, not a lot of people had heard of the Goldwater Rule. By now many surely have. The eponymous rule was established by the American Psychiatric Association, my own guild organization.Show More Summary

Your Doctor’s Party Shouldn’t Matter

Medicine has long thought of itself as a pure profession: dispassionate, scientific, and unbiased by external influences, especially messy ones like politics. Medical trainees and practicing physicians are taught not to bring their personal...Show More Summary

The Insanity of Doctor Recertification

A year ending in a six is moving swiftly past us, and that can only mean one thing to a swath of the folks who carry stethoscopes in their pockets and happen to have finished their residency in a similarly numbered year—it’s the decennial...Show More Summary

Is There a Cap on Human Life Span?

This story originally appeared on the Conversation and is reproduced here with permission. Humans may live longer and longer, but eventually we all grow old and die. This leads to a simple question: Is there an intrinsic maximum limit to human life span or not? There are two equally simple answers. Show More Summary

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