Cancer. Just the word is scary. Actually, that’s the problem. Once you say that word, the average American will do anything — ANYTHING! — to just get it out of my body!!! Whether or not they have it, whatever the actual numerical chances of their ever developing it, no chance for detecting or treating it should ever be neglected. EVER! Ask any Med-mal lawyer. Better, ask any twelve average people off the street (i.e., the ones who are going to wind up on a jury). “The doctor didn’t do every possible test/procedure, and now the patient has CANCER? String him up!”
Hence we have the new guidelines for PSA testing. (Given that many patients with prostate cancer have normal PSAs and lots of patients with high PSAs don’t have prostate cancer, it doesn’t seem semantically correct to call it “prostate cancer screening”.) Surprise! Turns out that not only does PSA testing not save lives, but that urologists don’t really care. Certainly not enough to stop recommending PSAs to just about everyone they can get their hands on.
Nor do breast surgeons have any intention of modifying their recommendations, not only in light of new understandings of the limitations of mammography, but even as Read more »
*This blog post was originally published at Musings of a Dinosaur*
Now that Google has become a near-universal information provider for many people, it’s finding itself answering questions that need a little more of a nuanced approach.
Apparently prodded by a mother who was looking for poison control contacts in an emergency, Google is now providing relevant phone numbers at the top of search results for a few specific queries. Read more »
*This blog post was originally published at Medgadget*
Every now and again I like to pick one of the classic research studies on smoking cessation in order to highlight some of the key findings. Today I’m going to focus on the part of the Lung Health Study.
The Lung Health Study is certainly one of the best smoking cessation studies ever carried out, partly because of the comprehensive nature of the assessment and follow-up of its 5,887 participants and partly because it was way ahead of its time in delivering a truly “state-of-the-art” intensive smoking cessation intervention which was compared in a randomized manner to the effects of “usual care”. The Lung Health Study (LHS) was a randomized clinical trial of smoking cessation and inhaled bronchodilator therapy in smokers 35 to 60 years of age who did not consider themselves ill but had evidence of mild to moderate airway obstruction. Read more »
This post, Classic Smoking Cessation Study Suggests You Can Save A Life For $2000, was originally published on
Healthine.com by Jonathan Foulds, Ph.D..