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Latest Posts

World’s First Bionic Fingers

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Touch Bionics, a company out of Livingston, UK and Hilliard, Ohio known for its i-LIMB device, is making available a new finger prosthesis system. ProDigits, a customizable platform that can be adapted to the needs of individual patients, provides electronically powered artificial fingers that can grasp and manipulate objects. The new hand can also be used for more advanced tasks such as typing on a keyboard. Read more »

*This blog post was originally published at Medgadget*

Microcystic Lymphatic Malformations Of The Tongue

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lymphaticmalformation

Photo Credit: eMedicine.com

I stumbled across this article while previewing JAMA & Archives CME articles (full reference below). The article gives an overview of lymphatic malformations, noting that both sexes are equally affected, and there is no predilection for any race.

Lymphatic malformations are vascular malformations with an unknown cause. They are estimated to make up 6% of all benign soft-tissue tumors in children. While they may be rare, 50% of all lymphatic malformations are already obvious at the time of birth. Most (90%) are diagnosed by the end of the second year of life owing to clinical symptoms.

About 60% of all lymphatic malformations are found in the head and neck region. Regarding the mouth, the tongue is most commonly affected.

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*This blog post was originally published at Suture for a Living*

Chiropractors Admit Their Treatments Are Based On False And Outdated Beliefs

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An article written by 4 chiropractors and published on December 2, 2009 in the journal Chiropractic and Osteopathy may have sounded the death knell for chiropractic.

The chiropractic subluxation is the essential basis of chiropractic theory. A true subluxation is a partial dislocation: chiropractors originally believed bones were actually out of place. When x-rays proved this was not true, they were forced to re-define the chiropractic subluxation as “a complex of functional and/or structural and/or pathological articular changes that compromise neural integrity and may influence organ system function and general health.” Yet most chiropractors are still telling patients their spine is out of alignment and they are going to fix it. Early chiropractors believed that 100% of disease was caused by subluxation. Today most chiropractors still claim that subluxations cause interference with the nervous system, leading to suboptimal health and causing disease. Read more »

*This blog post was originally published at Science-Based Medicine*

The Mammogram Post-Mortem

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Steve Novella whimsically opined on a recent phone call that irrationality must convey a survival advantage for humans. I’m afraid he has a point.

It’s much easier to scare people than to reassure them, and we have a difficult time with objectivity in the face of a good story. In fact, our brains seem to be hard wired for bias – and we’re great at drawing subtle inferences from interactions, and making our observations fit preconceived notions. A few of us try to fight that urge, and we call ourselves scientists. Read more »

*This blog post was originally published at Science-Based Medicine*

Google Suggest: Why Only Negative Adjectives For Doctors?

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The Efficient MD’s eyes are opened by the nasty thoughts Google Suggest offers up when someone starts typing “Doctors are…” Since Google Suggest lists only common results with which to complete your queries, it seems that the most common thing people think about doctors online is that we’re “overpaid” or “jerks” or “dangerous” or, most commonly, “sadists who like to play god.”

Surveys show people consider doctors to be among the most respected professions. So what gives? Read more »

*This blog post was originally published at Blogborygmi*

Latest Interviews

IDEA Labs: Medical Students Take The Lead In Healthcare Innovation

It’s no secret that doctors are disappointed with the way that the U.S. healthcare system is evolving. Most feel helpless about improving their work conditions or solving technical problems in patient care. Fortunately one young medical student was undeterred by the mountain of disappointment carried by his senior clinician mentors…

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How To Be A Successful Patient: Young Doctors Offer Some Advice

I am proud to be a part of the American Resident Project an initiative that promotes the writing of medical students residents and new physicians as they explore ideas for transforming American health care delivery. I recently had the opportunity to interview three of the writing fellows about how to…

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Latest Book Reviews

Book Review: Is Empathy Learned By Faking It Till It’s Real?

I m often asked to do book reviews on my blog and I rarely agree to them. This is because it takes me a long time to read a book and then if I don t enjoy it I figure the author would rather me remain silent than publish my…

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The Spirit Of The Place: Samuel Shem’s New Book May Depress You

When I was in medical school I read Samuel Shem s House Of God as a right of passage. At the time I found it to be a cynical yet eerily accurate portrayal of the underbelly of academic medicine. I gained comfort from its gallows humor and it made me…

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Eat To Save Your Life: Another Half-True Diet Book

I am hesitant to review diet books because they are so often a tangled mess of fact and fiction. Teasing out their truth from falsehood is about as exhausting as delousing a long-haired elementary school student. However after being approached by the authors’ PR agency with the promise of a…

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