Blog Profile / Slate: Medical Examiner

Filed Under:Health
Posts on Regator:303
Posts / Week:0.7
Archived Since:June 9, 2008

Blog Post Archive

Homeopathy Is a Bitter Sugar Pill

“Relief of flu-like symptoms.” “Safe, non-habit forming.” “Flower essences to calm down your unruly pets.” With claims like these, homeopathic wonder products must be good, right? These are some of the claims made by the purveyors of homeopathy, but what can homeopathy actually cure? Low blood sugar and dehydration. Show More Summary

Gun Myths Die Hard

Every week, it seems, there’s another terrible incident in the United States involving a shooting. If the incident is horrendous enough—a mass shooting or a story about a child being slain or accidentally shooting another child—it is...Show More Summary

Does Bacon Cause Cancer?

In 2012, two cheeky nutritionists decided to pick some common cookbook ingredients at random and see which ones had been linked to cancer. The results were revealing: Possible cancer-causers included flour, coffee, butter, sugar, salt, tomatoes, onions, lemon, celery, carrot, parsley, lobster, veal, cinnamon, and mustard. Show More Summary

Do-It-Yourself Medical Technology

Did you know that you can buy rapid strep throat diagnosis kits on Amazon? Probably the same ones you just schlepped to an urgent-care clinic to have a health care provider poke you with. The next time you stop at your local pharmacy, you can also buy the same temporal artery thermometer my pediatrician uses to scan a kid’s forehead for fever. Show More Summary

Gwyneth Paltrow’s Dangerous Advice

Last week, Gwyneth Paltrow posted to Instagram a picture of her makeup-free and dewy face to her 1.3 million followers with the caption: “All contagion aside … Going to hit it with heat #fluday5 #infraredsauna #clearlightsauna #iwilltryanythingatthispoint.” But...Show More Summary

Why the United States Is Plagued With Plague

In September 1908, a 10-year-old boy named Doderick Mulholland fell ill with fever and swollen glands. A dead squirrel was discovered in his Los Angeles neighborhood. Both boy and rodent were tested for plague. Both were positive. While...Show More Summary

Sick and Far From Home

Oliver had never left the United States when the Mormon church sent him on a mission in Chile in 2002. Eager to serve, the 19-year-old dove into missionary work. But after a few weeks, he began to experience crippling stomach pain. At first, Oliver was embarrassed by his ailment and tried to conceal it. Show More Summary

Why It’s So Difficult to Diagnose Autism in Girls

This article originally appeared on Spectrum on Oct. 6, 2015. Subtle, significant. In a nutshell, these two words capture the symptoms of many girls with autism. Like many in my field, I’ve seen this subtlety firsthand. One 6-year-old girl I met several years ago seemed, at first, to have good social skills. Show More Summary

Preemies Should Not Be Props

Extreme anti-smoking ads are maddeningly manipulative. You’ve probably seen some of the more disgusting ones, released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as well as state health agencies: the poor guy who has to coverShow More Summary

America’s Ebola Panic

It’s been a year since peak “Fearbola” in the United States—the out-of-proportion panic at the possibility of Ebola cases in this country. At that time, the outbreak was increasing dramatically in Sierra Leone, Guinea, and Liberia. Thomas...Show More Summary

Please Just Shoot Me Now

A few weeks ago, I drove up to a Rite Aid pharmacy near my home in San Diego and saw large red signs affixed to lampposts that urged me in English and Spanish to get my flu shot today. “FLU SHOTS NOW AVAILABLE!” blared another sign taped to the glass entrance. Show More Summary

How Tough Are the Vaccination Laws in Your State?

Update, July 1, 2015: This map has been updated to reflect a new California law mandating that almost all children attending public schools be vaccinated regardless of the personal or religious beliefs of their guardians. Mouse over each state to see its measles, mumps, and rubella vaccination rate. Original post, Feb. Show More Summary

Are You a Narcissist?

I would like to dedicate this article about narcissism to a very special person: me. This decision was not made lightly—only after I determined that there was no one else so incandescent, so charming, so wittily expert in the field of...Show More Summary

Ebola Is Not Over When It’s Over

FREETOWN, Sierra Leone—Ebola continues to blindside us. We still know next to nothing about the virus. It resurfaced unexpectedly in Liberia in July, two months after the World Health Organization declared the outbreak there over. One...Show More Summary

Cornering the Market on Essential Drugs

A few months ago, I treated a patient for a case of pinworm, a parasitic infestation that affects roughly 400 million people worldwide, with 40 million of those cases occurring within the United States. Though pinworms can be found in...Show More Summary

Do Not Delay

Now Donald Trump is a vaccine expert. During last week’s Republican debate, he told the story of a child who got sick and became autistic after receiving a vaccine. Trump failed to provide any evidence that autism is connected to vaccines. Show More Summary

Vaccines Are Not to Blame

Sarah Lemar was born Dec. 5, 1979, in Memphis, Tennessee. She and her mother, Alice Clinton, soon fell into the blissful routine of a new mom and her first infant. Days, Clinton would steal naps on the couch, her newborn baby nestled on her chest—slender, fairylike legs tucked up underneath, like an Anne Geddes photograph. Show More Summary

Now I Know What Your Blood Pressure Should Be

It’s easy to get confused by the overly dramatic daily news about health and medicine. One day coffee is great for you, the next day it interferes with sleep and leads to illness. One day the plague is back, the next day it’s Ebola or West Nile virus that’s capturing attention. Show More Summary

Shame on People Who Fat-Shame

Last week comedian Nicole Arbour posted a self-described “truth bomb” on YouTube, “Dear Fat People,” that quickly went viral. “If we offend you so much that you lose weight, I’m OK with that,” she said, and then did her best to offend,...Show More Summary

Abortion Guilt

Pope Francis announced plans last week, as part of his Holy Year of Mercy, for easier absolution for women who have had abortions. Five seconds later, battle lines were drawn. Supporters hailed his graces, conservatives were cheesedShow More Summary

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