New This Week: April 22, 2011
7 Tips When Getting a Second Medical Opinion
If you're received a serious medical diagnosis, you should consider seeing another physician for a second opinion. Not because you shouldn't trust your first doctor, but because you need to become as informed on your illness as possible and different points of view can help you in considering your options for treatment.
The following are seven considerations you should always keep in mind when getting a second medical opinion:
1. Is there agreement?
The obvious and key question to begin with is "Does the 2nd doctor agree with the 1st diagnosis and the implications of it?" If not, you should consider getting yet a 3rd opinion and even a consultation at a University hospital or academic center.
2. What are the 2-3 best treatment options?
What are the 2-3 best treatment options and what are the benefits, risks, and cost of each? Unfortunately, medicine as a business and economic factors often cloud a practitioner's judgment. This is not because they mean to intentionally misguide you, but there are financial incentives involved and you need try to understand their potential influence on the doctors.
In medicine, this is a problem in several ways:
- Virtually all of most physicians' ongoing medical education is paid for by the drug companies and represents slick advertising masquerading as educational activities. This even includes most of the studies in well-known journals. These studies are paid for by the drug companies and the journals' main source of income is often drug company advertising, an obvious potential conflict of interest. Research shows that a study paid for by a drug company is often not reliable (as much as 40-2,000% more likely to show a positive result than an independently funded study!). Most doctors think that they are being responsible and scientific when in actuality they are pushing expensive and often toxic new medications and treatments — that are not as effective as lower cost natural or generic therapies.
Cholesterol Meds (Statins) May Increase risk of Diabetes
A study found an association between patients on statin medications to control cholesterol and a 9% higher occurrence of diabetes. Read more »
FEATURED QUESTIONS FROM READERS
Q: What are your treatment recommendations for people with persistently low blood pressure? Read more »
Q: What are your recommendations on getting or avoiding the Hepatitis B vaccine? Read more »
Take the Color IQ Test
This seemingly simple test is surprisingly more difficult than it first appears. Think you know your colors? Give it a try. I'll bet it takes you at least a couple of tries to get it right.
Funny how your brain works.
JOKE OF THE WEEK
Gambling Can Age You
A woman in Atlantic City was losing at the roulette wheel. When she was down to her last 10 dollars, she asked the fellow next to her for a good number.
"Why don't you play your age?" he suggested. The woman agreed, and then put her money on the table.
The woman fainted and fell to the floor.
The fellow who suggested playing her age rushed over. "Did she win?" he asked. "No" replied the attendant. "She put 10 dollars on 33 and 46 came in."
An Extra Joke Just for the Kids
[This joke is from Ivory of Kona Hawaii, who is 5 1/2 years old.]
Why is Cinderella such a great baseball player?
Because she never misses a ball.
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