Category Archives: NEJM

Hypertension in the Very Old

Virtually all physicians treat their hypertensive patients who are 80 years old or more. The evidence for the effectiveness of this treatment in very old patients has up till now been lacking. The New England Journal of Medicine has published a paper, Treatment of Hypertension in Patients 80 Years of Age or Older, that shows…

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Medicine Undefined

The purpose of medicine is twofold. First to prolong life, ie to prevent premature death from disease. The second is to relieve pain and suffering from disease. To many medical “experts” it also appears to include the alleviation of just about anything that can cause distress of any sort. War, murder, crime, poverty are among…

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Money Squawks

The February issue of The ACP Internist contains an article Adding cosmetic procedures lifts internists’ sagging incomes that defines the decline in morale of our country’s most important profession. Click on the link and you can read the whole sad story and make up your mind about what’s happening to medicine. The article reflects a…

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The Amazing Noncollapsing US Health Care System

The above title is from another NEJM article. It’s interesting from a number of perspectives. It admits that medical care is provided to uninsured patients through a network of public and voluntary hospitals, free clinics, etc. It concludes that this safety net has prevented the collapse of the system that many have predicted over the…

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Physicians and Execution

The New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) has an editorial with the above title. It takes the position that physicians should not participate in executions. This is hardly a surprising view; one which, I suspect, would be that of virtually all doctors in the US. It certainly is mine. So why write a piece in…

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