Health & Medicine

A neoteric’s view

Stress has become one of the most popular words in common usage.  It is a scapegoat for a variety of health problems. Vast amounts of scientific work confirm that stress affects physical and mental health.  Stress is just another a natural response body response. Distress isn’t. Linking stress to a range of common diseases is statistically easy. […]

Many countries are relaxing their restrictions on cannabis. It’s been a long time since a psychoactive drug based on a plant and already widely used illicitly has been regulated. That is not surprising, given the trajectories of use and abuse of three of the older regulated products – opioids, tobacco and alcohol. Can THC help? […]

The monosodium glutamate job is still around.  The kind of job that satiates when you are in it …. but half an hour after leaving for the day, you feel empty and wonder, “Why I am still doing that job?” Then the next day you come back for more of the same. Most of these jobs are […]

Now that COVID occurs in people who are vaccinated and/or treated, it is time call a truce. The fact that COVID continues to be part of our daily lives requires an ecological view of our relationship to our environment, which includes all living organisms and those that live within us. We must make friends of […]

A watch is no longer a watch. It is a wrist-mounted health and fitness monitor for a large and increasing population. Indeed, one in six consumers in the United States now uses a smartwatch or fitness band.  Watches can do much more than watching. The accuracy of these devices is variable, depending on a variety of factors […]

Thinking and seeing are always linked. After a number of requests to see the way I view the world, each week I will be posting one of my artworks. This week it is from TheThinker City Series and it is a pastel of the Philadelphia Art Museum and Waterworks. Please feel free to download it […]

Covid has reminded us that living is a delicate balance of harmony and disharmony with our environmental partners – most recently, viruses. It has only been a couple of decades since our last major epidemic, HIV, was untreated and unpreventable. But things have changed and while Covid is on the way to becoming the equivalent […]

The first commandment of health information disclosure dictates that data shalt not be disclosed to any third party beyond what the patient has consented to. An awards program for health data would be a good start.  Unfortunately, organizations create, store and have access to our health data. Big data is big business and there are a variety […]

The second decade of this century will be remembered as the decade of COVID craziness if we aren’t careful. There is madness all around and very little of it is caused by the virus itself. From vaccine frenzy to vaccine denial, it is difficult to tease out what should be done next.  Start distributing more […]

I love the Eurovision song contest. Forty countries celebrating humour, kitsch, high camp, chanteuse and song. Then there’s the voting which tells me more about Europolitics than any news outlet.  Double down disability and religion and you can exclude more This year it was great to see an increase in the number of non-solo women […]

Women are women and men are men – for the most part. Ovaries and testes can be removed, and hormones blocked or supplemented but it doesn’t change the genetic makeup of our cells. Well not yet at least. So, people born with an XY chromosome have different potentials and responses to disease and treatments than […]

There is a level of complexity in determining who is at risk from a serious COVID infection. Prior chronic diseases have a big part to play, and it’s not just based on which organs are affected by the chronic disease.  Is it time to say goodbye to COVID boosters?  For example, not all patients with […]

Now that COVID protocols are easing and face-to-face consultations with our regular physicians are returning, it is a good time for doctors and patients to refresh their commitment to the same vows of care. It is a well-studied adage that patients and doctors are not congruent in their views about what should happen during their […]

It only takes a pandemic to see how countries can use healthcare to reignite flagging nationalism. COVID 19 spawned a new kind of nationalism: vaccine nationalism, the prioritization of the domestic needs of a country over an outlay to others.  Even the policies of countries such as Australia and New Zealand, where nationalism is enforced by […]

There is a new eating disorder coined every decade. Obesity: you eat too much. Anorexia nervosa: you ingest too little. Bulimia nervosa: you do too much of both – but not at the same time. Now, there is orthorexia nervosa (ON): you worry too much about eating healthy food. Maybe we should just stop eating […]

In the acute phase, men with COVID experience more severe symptoms and higher mortality than women. In that way COVID is no different from many of the viruses that have attacked humans over the last century.  The health of women is not just women’s health Men are more attractive to viral infections than women. For example, […]

Viruses can’t die because they aren’t alive in the first place. They are just a bunch of genetic instructions in search of a living organism to hijack.  Become part of the COVID death squad So how is it that the COVID-19 coronavirus doesn’t just disappear as we all get vaccinated? Sure, vaccination decreases the viral load […]

Time to spin some wishes into reality. Here is my top ten, in no particular order. Share yours in the comments box. Science never turns into science fiction, nor medical evidence twisted into medical factoid. COVID vaccination rates globally reach at least 90%.  COVID continues to morph into another influenza – like illness. Public health units […]