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Expert Panels and Health Care Reform

A friend recently send me a link to a Wall Street Journal opinion piece by Norman Gleicher titled 'Expert Panels' Won't Improve Health Care. Here is part of my response:  a) insurance companies all have panels now, but they are secretive, inconsistent, and dedicated to protecting their companies from meeting their contractual obligations  b) government panels

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Michael Jackson, Deepak Chopra, Lupus, and Child Abuse

A patient recently asked me about an article on People Magazine’s website about Deepak Chopra's belief that Michael Jackson had lupus and that this disease was connected to Jackson's childhood abuse. Dr. Chopra cited ‘recent research’ in support of this contention.   Here is some of what I wrote my patient:  The article from the Mailman School

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Evidence-Based Medicine and Chronic Illness

It is a terrific idea to compare effectiveness of treatments for the same illness—if “effectiveness” and “same illness” mean the same to the doctors, the patients, and the payers and patients who will benefit or lose according to the rules that follow. It is a terrific idea if the comparison meets the needs of each

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Medical Care and Doctor Fatigue

Dr. Barron Lerner in the New York Times ("A life-changing case for doctors in training," March 3, 2009) misinterprets the history of Libby Zion and the Bell Commission, and draws the wrong lessons. The concern about medical resident fatigue dates not from the 1984 case but at least as far back as a 1971 study

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Dancing at the River's Edge

Publication date – January 8, 2009  Dancing at the River's Edge: A Patient and Her Doctor Negotiate Life with Chronic Illness by Alida Brill and Michael D. Lockshin, MD What others have to say about the book: "A deeply personal exploration on both sides of the medical scene—the patient who suffers and strives to retain

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Atul Gawande’s NY Times Op-ED

Atul Gawande, the surgeon-writer, is outraged (A Lifesaving Checklist 12/30/07.) Apparently an ongoing medical study, that he endorsed, was stopped because of a bureaucratic rule. The study was trying to this question:  Are there fewer hospital infections if doctors follow a checklist, as do airline pilots on take-off (sample: Have you washed your hands? Have

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Discussing the Cost of Medicine

The New York Times today had an article written by Stephanie Saul entitled THE COVERAGE GAP Avoiding Medicare’s Big Hole. The last three paragraphs discuss the ‘fact’ that many patients are reluctant to discuss the cost of their prescriptions with their doctors. The claim that patients and their doctors do not want to discuss cost

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APS and vaccinations

A patient with APS recently emailed me with a question about vaccinations for her two small children. Her concern was that her children may be genetically susceptible to having a reaction or could develop an autoimmune condition from their vaccinations. She like the rest of the general public has gotten conflicting information about vaccinations, not

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HSS Doctor Offers Latest Treatments…and Compassion to Patients with Autoimmune Disorders

Imagine waking up one morning and feeling achy all over. As days pass, the achiness doesn’t go away, and you begin to feel tired, too. Your doctor can’t tell you exactly what’s wrong. So you go to a specialist, but the cause of your symptoms remains a mystery. Dr. Michael Lockshin, director of The Barbara

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