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October 06, 2019

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JuliaM

’ Ngaree Blow is a Yorta-Yorta, Noonuccal, Goreng Goreng woman and doctor.’

How on earth does that all fit on the name badge..? She also looks as white as I am.

Clam

With a glorious lack of irony, Ms Blow then denounces “outdated approaches to health”

Wow. Peak Guardian?

David

Wow. Peak Guardian?

As a rogue Guardian commenter notes, the aspects of ‘herbal’ or ‘traditional’ medicine that weren’t just woo and to some extent actually worked became conventional medicine and subsequently their effects were markedly improved. And if one were to compare a sense of enquiry and willingness to experiment, to incorporate and synthesize, those allegedly oppressive “Western paradigms” would fare quite well, not least when compared with a dogmatic insistence on chanting and dung. In the name of an ossified Stone Age culture.

David

Note the gushing endorsements by people with “social justice” or needless pronouns in their Twitter bios.

Charlie Suet

This sort of stuff is quite common in the Graun. It never seems to have an impact on their “party of science” bullshit though.

Joan

or worse, considered inferior,

If she gets pregnant or needs antibiotics I bet she won't be running to the nearest 'traditional healer'.

Rob

Guardian readers are fine with this, as they will never be affected (they will choose the outdated, colonial medicine), only aboriginals will suffer.

Sociopaths.

David

If she gets pregnant or needs antibiotics I bet she won’t be running to the nearest ‘traditional healer’.

Again, some people are more accustomed to habitual pretence.

David

Guardian readers are fine with this, as they will never be affected (they will choose the outdated, colonial medicine), only aboriginals will suffer.

Given the marked and persistent disparity in average life expectancy, at one point measured in decades, I’m not sure that aboriginal medicine, such as it is, is something to boast about. On indeed inflict on people.

Farnsworth M Muldoon

As a rogue Guardian commenter notes...

If one weren't already upon your head (or in your sinuses) I would that there be a pox on your head for causing me to wade into that cesspit of stupid, regardless of the occasional sane person, e.g...

...feel free to design a bespoke health service if you wish. Just don’t ask the 97% to pay.

...who gets to the heart of the matter. Australia has their version of the NHS, as such, it is resource constrained. In a resource constrained system, money spent on flummery is money not spent on a needed resource, whether personnel, materiel, or facilities. I don't know what a Ngangkari fetches in salary, but it is likely at least one or more less nurse or a PA. The alternative, of course, is to jack up prices in the form of higher taxes, or cut some other government service (you lot don't need that tank, do you). For a country as huge as Australia to fritter away money on this sort of thing while having fewer MRIs/capita than Tennessee (only twice the size of Tasmania) alone is probably not the best health care budgeting decision making. The bottom line is someone, somewhere, doesn't get what is really needed to assuage someone else's feels.

At the opposite end of the spectrum, we find a defender of the flummery who is incensed at another person calling it as it is...

"faith-based medicine"

Bullshit. It is medicine developed over 10s of thousands of years of trial and error..

Keep your scorn for iridology and other such bullshit.

"Trial and error", mainly error based on the lack of efficacy for treating real disease, but hey, it is not iridology, which is totally irrational, unlike getting ones spirits and chakras aligned.

Mike

Still, if patients aren’t recovering as rapidly as one might hope, or indeed recovering at all, at least those Western paradigms will be “decolonised” and righteously disrupted

That.

David

That.

It does rather hint at Ms Blow’s priorities.

David

If one weren’t already upon your head (or in your sinuses) I would that there be a pox on your head

It’s now a chesty wheeze. I am therefore gnawing on tree bark and smearing myself with kangaroo excrement.

Farnsworth M Muldoon

I am therefore gnawing on tree bark and smearing myself with kangaroo excrement.

I'm not too sure that is the right cure, let me consult some thrown some chicken bones - wait a tic...

Ah - there it is - you are in the Northern (or as we call it Yte) hemisphere, so for that cure to work you need to align your sickbed with the equinox opening of Stonehenge, and have a Druid priest place some healing runes in a heptagram around it, then you'll be up and at 'em in no time.

Sam Duncan

“With a glorious lack of irony, Ms Blow then denounces 'outdated approaches to health'”

To the Guardianista, there is no irony. It's been clear for some time that “outdated” is simply Guardian-speak for “something we don't like but can't actually form any coherent argument against”.

“I am therefore gnawing on tree bark and smearing myself with kangaroo excrement.”

Oh. I thought you'd been down the tanning salon. I did wonder about the, er... interesting aroma, right enough...

David

I thought you’d been down the tanning salon.

A prospect about as likely as the excremental daubing.

pst314

Ms Blow's aboriginal friends want some of that sweet government healthcare money. What a deal that would be: lots of money without having to spend years in medical school actually learning how to diagnose and cure sick people.

Charles Rasp

Jeez, with all that “culturally appropriate” medicine, our indigenous brothers must surely be the healthiest people in the country, despite Medicare and that “colonialist” western medicine. Hang on ... aboriginal median age of death is 25 years less than the population as a whole .....?

Farnsworth M Muldoon

What a deal that would be: lots of money without having to spend years in medical school actually learning how to diagnose and cure sick people.

Lots of someone's money, Ngaree has already been to med school, not that translates automatically to actually being able to diagnose and cure sick people, which makes me wonder about this curious statement.

As a doctor, I have embraced disruption and have chosen to reject conventional medical training pathways. I have been drawn to the public health space because I recognised a need to look at health at a systemic level.

Public health, other than grunt work in something like an county health clinic (which is actually done by primary care types), being what we call in the trade an MPC, or even an NPC specialty (minimal or non patient contact).

At one time, for example, John Snow and the Broad Street Pump, Walter Reed and yellow fever, eradicating hookworm in the south, almost completely eradicating polio worldwide, etc, etc, public health and preventive medicine was a noble, and often dangerous to the practitioners, field. Now standing on the shoulders of these giants is a lot of nanny state SJW charlatans who, having no great diseases to conquer - except ones like cancers that require lots of contact with actual sick people and actual laboratory research - dream up drivel like this.

Here in the US&A, these titans of medicine have filed a complaint to stop publication against the Annals of Internal Medicine because the journal dared publish a research article saying that eating red meat isn't the devil.

The Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, which promotes plant-based diets, has filed a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission against the journal that published the research. Seriously. And Harvard’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health warned that the conclusions could “erode public trust in scientific research.”

Harvard health gurus also complained that the researchers should have studied the environmental impact of red meat in their review because “climate change and environmental degradation have serious effects on human health” and thus are “important to consider when making recommendations.”

As I said, nanny statee SJWs. Mustn't disturb the narrative - silence the heretics.

Farnsworth M Muldoon

Hang on ... aboriginal median age of death is 25 years less than the population as a whole .....?

Well, of course, that is because they have been forced to use Colonial Wypipo Medicine™ and denied their Ngangkari and other Disruptive Indigenous Medical™ personnel and paraphernalia. The average age of the indigenous Australian was 157 until Cook landed, then it instantly fell to 35.

pst314

Ngaree has already been to med school

That's why I wrote "Ms Blow's aboriginal friends". In addition to the usual political posturing and indulgence in childish fantasies, these movements usually have an element of financial fraud.

Lady Cutekitten of Lolcat

No, no, no, David. You got the wisdom of the ancestors backwards. You SMEAR yourself with the TREE BARK and gnaw on the...

Dom

Do the rest of you know that Terrence Howard was asked to speak on physics and mathematics AT OXFORD UNIVERSITY. It’s the end of the world.

https://youtu.be/ca1vIYmGyYA

Steve E

Note the gushing endorsements by people with “social justice” or needless pronouns in their Twitter bios.

I suspect their reactions might be different if they were to go to the doctor with a broken arm and he started slapping the dung on them.

pst314

Terrence Howard was asked to speak on physics and mathematics

I was not expecting to find Booked On Phonics at Oxford.

Details of his, um, eccentric theories here:

"In a 2015 interview with Rolling Stone, Howard explained that he had formulated his own language of logic, which he called Terryology, and which he was keeping secret until he had patented it. This logic language would be used to prove his contention that '1 × 1 = 2'. "

Are patents awarded for insane crackpottery? His ignorance and silliness are exceeded only by his ego.

Dom

”His ignorance and silliness are exceeded only by his ego.”

And he was asked to speak AT OXFORD.

pst314

asked to speak at Oxford

If you review the list of people invited to speak at Oxford Union, you will find lots of cranks, including Black (Criminal) Lives Matter. One might speculate that they like to invite a full range of opinions. And perhaps he was invited because of his acting career, not his mathematical and physical theories. On the other hand, the few Oxford people I have met personally have struck me as being in the grip of irrational leftist fantasies, fantasies which included a significant amount of malice towards "class enemies".

WTP

Heh. He said he was "honored to speak at Oxford". So honored that he put forward the supreme effort and managed to throw a (sport?) coat over his t-shirt before taking the podium. I wonder if we shall see much more honorable men speaking at our major universities in our lifetimes.

WTP

If you review the list of people invited to speak at Oxford Union, you will find lots of cranks, including Black (Criminal) Lives Matter.

BLM doesn't surprise me in the least. I'm curious to see the list. Any Brexteers or BNP folks? Boris? I have no idea myself, asking for perspective. Apparently they had Saint Maggie there back in the day.

pst314

WTP: the YouTube video has a link to their website, and from there you can find a list of past speakers.

aelfheld

When did 'ineffective' get rebranded as 'disruptive'?

aelfheld
This sort of stuff is quite common in the Graun. It never seems to have an impact on their “party of science” bullshit though.

Charlie, no one ever said it was good science.

Marc

Sit around for 40000 years and achieve fuck all.

Steve E

I was not expecting to find Booked On Phonics at Oxford.

I believe you've identified the source for the language used in most humanities abstracts.

David

Note that Ms Blow deploys the buzzword ‘equity’, discussed here recently, and enthuses about its potential as a “disruptive innovation”:

Equity of ideas or worldviews of health and wellbeing should have mutual respect, without hierarchy of knowledge systems.

Medicine must, we’re told, “incorporate” aboriginal beliefs. And so, doctors and surgeons should pretend that all worldviews, however primitive and dysfunctional, are somehow equal in their merits and medical effectiveness.

Except for those oppressive and colonial Western paradigms, presumably.

Hopp Singg

I suspect that future historians, i.e. thems who survive, will refer to the next fifty years of our history as The Great Culling.

Jen

Instalanche!

https://pjmedia.com/instapundit/344424/

David

Instalanche!

Shred this, flush that, and help me erase these hard drives.

Steve E

...and help me erase these hard drives.

Here, use this bottle of BleachBit I picked up at a Clinton yard sale.

Observer

She also looks as white as I am.

Be careful, the columnist Andrew Bolt was successfully sued ten years ago in Australia for observing that a number of "aboriginal" activists clearly had mostly white ancestry.

Having one minority grandparent obviously qualifies you for the rights and privileges of being a "person of color", and don't you dare question it.

Steve E

.

David

And once round the gents’ with a can of Oust.

David

If anyone has trouble with comments not appearing, email me and I’ll rattle the spam filter. Which, needless to say, is being tetchy again.

pst314

rattle the spam filter. Which, needless to say, is being tetchy again.

Do Instapundit readers annoy it?

pst314

Shred this, flush that, and help me erase these hard drives.

Hide the good liquor and the pickled eggs.

Farnsworth M Muldoon

Hide the good liquor...

That ship is so far over the over the horizon it is already tomorrow.

David

Do Instapundit readers annoy it?

Not particularly, but she’s capricious. A few years ago, my own comments were getting snagged in there for the better part of a day. You can imagine the indignity.

pst314

A few years ago, my own comments were getting snagged

As if it had developed a grudge against you. Now I understand why you write "appease the spam filter".

Hal

. . . the journal dared publish a research article saying that eating red meat isn't the devil.

Oh, it's not red meat that's bad for you, it's green fuzzy meat that's bad for you . . .

Jay  Guevara

And Harvard’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health warned that the conclusions could “erode public trust in scientific research.”

As if biomedical research is scientific. Outside of their dreams, that is. The biomedical research literature is a joke by the standards of physics and chemistry. See, e.g., the "replication crisis."

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Replication_crisis#In_medicine

pst314

And The Gulag Archipelago eroded trust in socialism.

Eff these commissars.

GWB

which views health as holistic and all-encompassing, has often been ignored or worse, considered inferior

Now, here is where the problem lies. Because *this* is very true. And sometimes even unfortunately so. Heck, we're even learning that leeches had more than an ignorant use way back when. And we've learned that sometimes when we "medicinize" a healing herb we miss some elements of value.

However, she then goes on to reject all of modernity as if it's merely some other version of magic. (BTW, healing methods that work but not understood by the patients? Magic. Don't work? Sorcery!) So, she fetishizes the past and "natural" medicine. And, like all fetishes, it becomes the problem, instead of an answer.

This is a massive human tendency - to perceive a problem, reject all things associated with the perceived source of the problem, and cling cult-like to the antithesis of the perceived source. Modern education has embraced it as a valid pedagogy. And so the pendulum swings - and this time sweeping all of humankind backward along with it. *smdh*

Chester Draws

Guardian readers are fine with this, as they will never be affected (they will choose the outdated, colonial medicine), only aboriginals will suffer.

As the current reappearance of Measles is showing, that isn't true. The poor sometimes don't vaccinate because they lack transport etc, but a significant number of the rich no longer vaccinate because they distrust all "Western" medicine.

I bet a significant number of Guardian readers are into iridology, reiki, cupping, acupuncture etc.

Steve E

However, she then goes on to reject all of modernity as if it's merely some other version of magic.

It makes me so angry I could throw lightning at her.

Farnsworth M Muldoon

Heck, we're even learning that leeches had more than an ignorant use way back when.

No, leeches only had an ignorant use back when, or in any traditional use now*.

It is only comparatively recently that the anticoagulant properties of leech spit was found to be useful in surgical repairs such as in reattachment of digits, burns grafts, or other cases in which microvasculature is often compromised, given that local anticoagulation/anti-platlet action is often safer for the patient than systemic.

Don't get me started on herbs, many of which (I'm looking at you St. John's Wort) can be dangerous when used with real medicine.

*(see Hirudotherapy, the practitioners of which claim leeches can cure nigh every ailment known to man: "Medicinal Leeches applications are one of the leading Alternative & Complementary modalities in the World. - Detoxification, Rejuvenation and Blood Purification with preventive Hirudotherapy became a very popular form of natural healing." - George Washington was unavailable for comment.)

Adam

Next time I need a hip replacement, I’ll travel down to OZ and consult on the First Peoples’ surgical techniques and recovery stats.

Health really is overrated, no? I mean it is so oppressive and colonial as a concept.

Aggie

...said Ms Blow, standing to get her PICTURE taken against the polished granite tile wall of the MODERN OFFICE BUILDING.

fnord

Perhaps Ms Blow will henceforth be required to limit her consumption of medical services to those supplied by the 'First Peoples' thereby leaving more resources available to those of us who are sane.
Disrupt that, swampy!

Jay  Guevara

.said Ms Blow, standing to get her PICTURE taken against the polished granite tile wall of the MODERN OFFICE BUILDING.

No one had the heart to tell her that the wall and the modern office building were almost certainly built by ... white male imperialist oppressors.

The horror.

And for the love of God, don't tell her who invented and built indoor plumbing.

Farnsworth M Muldoon

Speaking of Australians with odd theories, this sociologist discusses "...race, gender & ableism in Joker and how to situate a critical reading in the local Australian context...", however she is an applied sociologist, not some mere academic sociologist, so I am sure her theories are sound.

Jay  Guevara

All sociology, of whatever stripe, is a joke.

Herp McDerp

Golly, lily-white Witch Lady! Give us a shout when your disruptive and decolonized First Peoples get around to inventing the wheel using their indigenous “ways of knowing, being and doing.”

Meanwhile, to protect your spiritual integrity, you need to immediately cease the cultural appropriation of wypipo’s medicine, science, technology, and language.

Darleen

Related.

Farnsworth M Muldoon

Related.

A cynic might conclude that preventive medicine exists to transform people into raw material for a profit-hungry medical-industrial complex...One reason for the compulsive urge to test and screen and monitor is profit, and this is especially true in the United States, with its heavily private and often for-profit health system. How is a doctor—or hospital or drug company—to make money from essentially healthy patients? By subjecting them to tests and examinations that, in sufficient quantity, are bound to detect something wrong or at least worthy of follow-up.

Gee, wouldn't have expected a comment like that from a "democratic" socialist who supported Ralph Nader and John Kerry.

Yeah, profit, that is the reason, given the glut of sick and injured people out there, let's prey on the healthy.

Dentists—and I have met a number of them in my moves around the country—always wanted a fresh set of X-rays...So why should I routinely expose my mouth, which is much more cancer-prone than the feet, to high annual doses of roentgens?

Aside from the fact that teeth can go bad in a remarkably short period of time, a full set of digital bitewings is 0.02 mSv, so you would need 2500 of them a year to reach the maximum allowable level for a radiation worker, but I guess the hyperbole gets more clicks amongst the luddites.

But if mammography seems like a refined sort of sadism, colonoscopies mimic an actual sexual assault. First the patient is sedated—often with what is popularly known as the “date rape drug,” Versed—then a long flexible tube, bearing a camera on one end, is inserted into the rectum and all the way up through the colon.

You know you are reaching when you have to crank up the Outrage-o-Meter by comparing a colonoscopy to a rape as other than a stale joke. Versed, BTW, is not "known as the date rape drug", reported to have been used, yes, but Rohypnol and Ambien are the most common in the US, The reason Versed is used for conscious sedation for procedures such as colonoscopies is that it is short acting, so generally no recovery room needs, and it gives retrograde amnesia for the event.

I could spend all day on this mess; you don't want to have a test because you are 78, don't have it, but don't advocate for everyone not to have access because you don't "feel" it is necessary because of some claptrap about the tests mainly being done just for a fast buck. If that were the case, there is a hell of a lot more money to be made by not doing tests and treating big cancers than, say, nipping a polyp during a colonscopy. Of course then our author would have to kvetch about evil doctors not trying to prevent or detect disease early.

Darleen

you don't want to have a test because you are 78, don't have it, but don't advocate for everyone not to have access because you don't "feel" it is necessary

Yep. I'm thinking this gal is trying along of the lines of Dr Zeke Emanuel who figures dying by 75 should be a goal. And I'm NOT buy this:

, like the orthopedist who upon receiving a diagnosis of pancreatic cancer immediately closed down his practice and went home to die in relative comfort and peace.

My mother-in-law died of that in 2016, at home in hospice - the end was ugly, painfilled and as uncomfortable as hell for her. Unfortunately, there is NO real screening test for it, which I would pray for cuz her own mom died of it and it has me worried for my husband.

Interestingly the conscious sedation drugs do NOT work on me, so it propofol for me - colonoscopy on the schedule in 9 days, and since I'm consenting, I reject the "rape" analogy.

David

In a resource constrained system, money spent on flummery is money not spent on a needed resource... For a country as huge as Australia to fritter away money on this sort of thing while having fewer MRIs/capita than Tennessee… is probably not the best health care budgeting decision making.

Well, again, despite attempts to romanticise and exaggerate aboriginal medicine – “But look, eucalyptus!” – the persistent differences in health and lifespan speak for themselves. If aboriginal approaches, untainted by “Western paradigms,” are so praiseworthy and desirable, one wonders why aboriginal people suffer from alarming rates of diabetes, cancer, tuberculosis, chlamydia and any number of other diseases and afflictions – from cardiovascular problems to hearing loss and disastrous oral hygiene. And the less contact they have with those “colonial organisations” and “biomedical models,” the more pronounced the disparities seem to be.

Being “disruptive” and “the antithesis of colonial” doesn’t appear to be working out terribly well.

juliaeryn

Darleen, you cannot consent to it as you will be 'under the influence' when it happens.
Seriously though, all the best with your procedure 😊

David

Seriously though, all the best with your procedure

Indeed. Best of luck. I’m assuming there’ll be some kind of slideshow afterwards.

Fred the Fourth

Slideshow...

A few years ago my wife had arthroscopic surgery on her shoulder. Three tiny holes, one for fluid tube to inflate the joint to get working space, one for video camera, and one for combo roto-rooter / suction tool. They gave us a DVD after. Too cool for words. But I was most amazed by a bit before surgery started, while the vidcam was laying on a sterile tray. You can clearly see the contents of a shelf at least ten feet away, even though the vidcam is normally focussed only a centimeter or so from its lens during the procedure. Maybe the presence / absence of surrounding fluid makes that difference.

Anyway, I'll bring (better) snacks if the slideshow materializes.

Also (sigh) I too am supposed to schedule one. Not looking forward to that, no sir.

TimT

...like the orthopedist who upon receiving a diagnosis of pancreatic cancer immediately closed down his practice and went home to die in relative comfort and peace.

I've heard of similar cases. Just in my circle of friends, there is one who works in health and has experienced cancer both as a nurse and in her own family - she holds a similar position; after a certain age she won't bother with tests anymore and if she gets cancer she won't try to fight it aggressively.

And some treatments can be positively awful. Just to take an obvious example, chemotherapy can leave you sick for months. It has huge associated risks.

Would it be any wonder if medical professionals, aware of the risks and the likely outcomes, might sometimes choose to avoid treating their disease?

Chester Draws

The relevant word there TimT is aware.

Modern medicine makes you aware, and you make your choices. Sometimes those choices aren't great.

"Traditional" medicine makes you choose blind. Which means you might die of something that turns out to be preventable.

TimT

Yep, I'm not speaking about the original article that kickstarted the thread.

I find it striking that in some cases, those best-positioned to be aware of their condition, and to make choices - ie medical officials diagnosed with life-threatening conditions - might choose to forgo any treatment and let the disease take its course.

For schmucks like me, I hope when the time came I'd be able to have a full and thorough conversation with my doctor to know of my choices.

Don

Releant:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nt0NcaxmGHo

Connor

Equity of ideas or worldviews of health and wellbeing should have mutual respect, without hierarchy of knowledge systems.

So the thing that doesn't work (or makes it worse) should be 'respected' as much as the actual cure? Very progressive.

David

So the thing that doesn’t work (or makes it worse) should be ‘respected’ as much as the actual cure? Very progressive.

Well, quite. Because we mustn’t have a “hierarchy of knowledge systems.” But if the primary cause of the health disparities is the arrestedness of aboriginal culture, and it would seem it is, then demanding medical deference to aboriginal beliefs - in the name of “equity” and “disruption” - doesn’t sound like the best way to improve health outcomes for aboriginal people.

Farnsworth M Muldoon

Regarding the doctor and others with cancer who want to get on the proverbial ice floe and drift off from the village, let me address a couple of points brought up.

...chemotherapy can leave you sick for months. It has huge associated risks.

True enough, depending on the cancer and the chemo, but the ultimate associated benefit is not being dead, which brings us to:

Would it be any wonder if medical professionals, aware of the risks and the likely outcomes, might sometimes choose to avoid treating their disease? ...I hope when the time came I'd be able to have a full and thorough conversation with my doctor to know of my choices.

The tale of the orthopod notwithstanding, and having been amongst them most of my adult life, I've never even heard of a doc who forewent treatment of a cancer. The flip side of our friend on the ice floe, anecdotal as it may be, is the case of one I know who statistically should have been dead 20+ years ago from a particularly aggressive and late diagnosed brand but who has undergone so many courses of chemo and surgeries for mets and complications, I have lost count of each, yet despite the miseries of chemo, agonies of surgical recovery, and debilitation of the disease itself, the doc is as mentally sharp and feisty as ever, and when the inevitable time for more chemo and/or surgery comes will continue to raise a middle finger to Herr Reaper.

That having been said, if your time comes, and you are not getting the info you need to make your own informed decision, go to another doctor, it is your life, and if doc A is cheesed because you go to doc B, oh well, he can sulk.

Regardless, the thing is, if you do nothing you know what is going to happen, chemo and/or surgery might make you miserable for a while (not everyone gets the full package insert of side effects) but extend your life quite a bit - even if it is pancreatic short of stage III or higher.

Darleen - there is screening available for familial pancreatic cancer that include MRIs and endoscopic ultrasound, with genetic testing still in development.

pst314

Well, quite. Because we mustn’t have a “hierarchy of knowledge systems.”

Funny how the leftists who rail against "hierarchies" all want to impose hierarchies of power with themselves at the top and us under the boot.

WTP

One reason for the compulsive urge to test and screen and monitor is profit, and this is especially true in the United States, with its heavily private and often for-profit health system

I'm inclined to agree, to a very, very qualified degree, with this. The colonoscopies and such, especially for people such as myself whose family histories (though always at an advanced age) justify it. But there are risks with some of these tests that the medical system tries to pretend isn't there. I can't help but suspect that repeated sedations my mother had for two cancer surgeries near the end hastened the onset of her dementia. Not that the surgeries weren't well worth the risk but I think there's a lot that isn't being questioned in this regard. I also see a lot of people going in for back surgeries and similar where the slightly better (if that, sometimes worse) outcome was never worthy of the risk and where weight management would have likely been a much better option. Similar with bariatric or wtf it's called stomach surgeries to help with weight loss.

While the medical profession and medical science is far superior to this witchdoctor BS, as someone indicated above the biological science on which some of it is based is highly questionable. And especially the obsession with diet and even in some cases exercise (when taken to extremes), it's not like medical science, through it's arrogance, hasn't set itself up for much of the criticism, warranted and not, that it is receiving today.

Farnsworth M Muldoon

One reason for the compulsive urge to test and screen and monitor is profit, and this is especially true in the United States, with its heavily private and often for-profit health system

That is just typical socialist "gimme free health care" garbage. Disease is more expensive, and would thus generate more revenue, than testing and prevention. Period. Cost, for example, to the patient of a PSA, about 20 bucks (of which the doc may see 2*, the lab get to keep 5 after costs), cost of prostate surgery low 5 to low 6 figures depending on where you are and what stage it is. It is the same across the board.

I don't doubt there are a few docs who perform needless procedures to make an extra buck or order superfluous tests because they are unsure of themselves (I have known a couple), but they are the exception, and every profession has a few unscrupulous - except lawyers, politicians, and actors, where they are the rule, not the exception.

...as someone indicated above the biological science on which some of it is based is highly questionable.

If by questionable, you mean constantly evolving, yes. The difference between medical research (above the biochemical/cellular level) and chemistry and physics, is that individual people are much more intrinsically variable, and subject to extrinsic variables, than molecules and atoms (and if you want to get into questionable, let's look at what theory of physics past basic mechanics is in fashion on any given day). The fact is that there are differences between the sexes, races, people who live in Maine vs. Texas vs. France, old vs. young, and so on, so yeah, reproducibility can be an issue, as can getting sample sizes, and the gamut of stuff one needs to conduct research on people. Chemistry research goes wrong - oh, well, start over, medical - "yeah, sorry about arm growing out of your forehead" just quite isn't the same.

*(less the material cost for blood tubes and phlebotomy equipment)

Darleen

I don't doubt there are a few docs who perform needless procedures to make an extra buck or order superfluous tests because they are unsure of themselves

Or protect themselves from lawsuits - many of them of "you followed protocol but I still don't like the outcome" variety.

Darleen

there is screening available for familial pancreatic cancer that include MRIs and endoscopic ultrasound, with genetic testing still in development.

Thanks for the info. It just would be nice if there was a simpler, non-invasive, way of testing.

David

[ Cough ] Slideshow. [ Cough ]

Farnsworth M Muldoon

Or protect themselves from lawsuits...

That too. Regarding the testing, part of the problem is that given its location, physical exam is nigh impossible so you need something else. An MRI is non-invasive (and open ones for the claustophobics), and they have other stuff in the works, the problem is that you have to find some kind of marker so you can develop a test with high enough sensitivity and specificity to be reliable across all populations (blacks, for instance, have a 25% higher incidence than wypipo, and Asians lower still).

Farnsworth M Muldoon

Speaking of questionable science, the entire world is warming faster than the rest of the world.

Scroll through the whole twit - fun for the whole family, but as St. Greta would say "How dare you".

ns
Note that Ms Blow deploys the buzzword ‘equity’, discussed here recently, and enthuses about its potential as a “disruptive innovation”:
Equity of ideas or worldviews of health and wellbeing should have mutual respect, without hierarchy of knowledge systems.

Medicine must, we’re told, “incorporate” aboriginal beliefs. And so, doctors and surgeons should pretend that all worldviews, however primitive and dysfunctional, are somehow equal in their merits and medical effectiveness.

So, has Ms. Ngaree Blow incorporated any Lucumi healing practices (part of Santeria) yet? How about traditional Cherokee practice?* Why is she engaged in suppressing the other ethno-medicine practices?

*I would gladly send Ms. Elizabeth Warren to Australia for consultation. As long as she stays there.

Farnsworth M Muldoon

Medicine must, we’re told, “incorporate” aboriginal beliefs.

Yet despite that, another slap in the face to the various Disruptive Indigenous Medical™ practitioners, the 2019 Nobel Prize in medicine is awarded to three wypipo, and yte males at that. I'll bet they stole all their knowledge from the itinerant indigenous healers of the Andes who are used to working at high altitudes and the reduced oxygen up there. Yte supremacy will do that every damn time.

I can't even.

Daniel Ream

Or protect themselves from lawsuits - many of them of "you followed protocol but I still don't like the outcome" variety.

Much is made of the problems with health care prices in the US. The state of Texas experimented with a change in the law several years back: they capped damages for "pain and suffering" at $250K. The actual reward amounts for malpractice resulting in loss of life and limb are actually fairly low; they're determined by actuarial tables. The state-lottery-sized payouts come from "emotional damages".

There was an interesting ripple effect: since malpractice payouts went way down, doctors ordered fewer unnecessary tests (which they'd been doing to prove they'd done everything possible). Overall costs of treatment of routine ailments went way down. With total financial risk reduced, malpractice insurance likewise became much cheaper; the result was that doctors who previously would only work for a large hospital that could afford group malpractice insurance were able to carry individual malpractcie insurance, and so many doctors migrated out to the smaller towns to practice general/family medicine. For many rural areas, this was the first time they'd had a doctor in the region for decades.

I'm given to understand that the other half of the problem is that individual states are permitted to individually regulate insurance, with the result that health insurance companies have to incorporate and operate discretely in each state. This prevents insurance companies from operating nationwide, exploiting economies of scale and competing with a larger field.

Jay  Guevara

Medicine must, we’re told, “incorporate” aboriginal beliefs.

Wouldn't that be cultural appropriation?

I'm confused.

Governor Squid

Wouldn't that be cultural appropriation?

It would indeed! This is why it's so imperative that our government health ministries get busy hiring Authentic People of Indigineity to augment the treatment options available to the hoi polloi. It just wouldn't be Fair or Equitable if we were to allow a bunch of wypipo to practice or offer advice that their Western training has left them ill-qualified to understand.

Fortunately, Ms. Blow and her compatriots have a credentialing body all ready to start sending appropriate candidates to the ministries. For a modest fee, of course!

lotocoti

Medicine must, we’re told, “incorporate” aboriginal beliefs.

Put me down as a hard no for subincision.

Steve E

Speaking of cultural appropriation, this from Ecuador.

David, you might consider this frozen treat for behind the bar when the Hump Fat runs low.

Darleen

this from Ecuador.

Beetle ice cream has a slight aroma of wet earth.

[opens travel wish list, deletes "Ecuador"]

Steve E

Come to think of it, it might work just as well with Hamster. I believe I've seen one running loose behind the bar.

Fred the Fourth

C'mon Darleen, Ecuador is great!
Where else can you attend a huge weekend market crammed into the streets around the government buildings, where numerous conveniently placed niches house federal cops armed with Streetsweeper shotguns?
Gave me a warm and fuzzy, I tell you!

Fred the Fourth

But, then there was that annoying cholera pandemic.
Put me right off the raw ceviche.
(A chronic, sad, and totally unnecessary cause of death, since oral rehydration is so easy. Sad sad sad.)

David

it might work just as well with Hamster. I believe I’ve seen one running loose behind the bar.

They keep down the beetles.

TDK

Reminds me of an old joke from the medical profession:

Q: "What do you call alternative medicine that works?"

A: "Medicine"

Governor Squid

[opens travel wish list, deletes "Ecuador"]

Having worked this summer to raise funds for a family fleeing to Ecuador from Venezuela, I really don't think that a couple of weird flavors of ice cream is going to cause them to reconsider their decision.

Farnsworth M Muldoon

...I really don't think that a couple of weird flavors of ice cream is going to cause them to reconsider their decision.

Indeed, it is no doubt a step up from Rata Asada and Selección de Dumpster.

OldBruin

To be fair, gnawing on a tree bark to treat malaria has been found to be efficacious, if that bark is from a cinchona tree. That was the only known cure for malaria, before quinine was isolated and synthesized from that bark.

Of course, once that was known, it became standardized medicine. All I am saying is, don't necessarily put down gnawing on a tree bark a priori.

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