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Today I was catching up on reading some past American Family Physician journals, and in the July 1, 2017 issue are two excellent editorials addressing drug prices charged by pharmaceutical companies in the U.S.  They are quick reads, free to anyone to access, and worth checking out:


Problematic Jumps in Drug Prices and What You Can Do.  by Allen F Shaughnessy, PharmD, Tufts University School of Medicine.

A brief exerpt:  “The industry also claims that revenue is plowed back into research and development…  the major pharmaceutical companies spend more on sales and marketing ($5.2 billion in 2015) than they do on research and development.

Drug Price Gouging: When Will It End? by Jay Siwek, MD, Georgetown University Medical Center

This is a very brief, one column, scathing critique of drug pricing.

Filed Under: Cost Savings

Last week a new vaccine for prevention of shingles was not only approved by the FDA, but the CDC recommended vaccination of everyone over age 50 with Shingrix, revaccination with Shingrix if you have previously received the older shingles vaccine Zostrix, and expressed preference for Shingrix over Zostavax.  Shingrix has approval and recommendation for use… Continue Reading

Filed Under: In the News, New Drugs, Preventative Care, Public Health

In about April 2015 I decided to stop eating animal products.  For the previous year or two my son had become a vegan, and I listened to his reasoning for his life-style changes.  At first I was turned off by what I thought were his overly extreme positions on animal cruelty, environmental concerns, and initially… Continue Reading

Filed Under: Cancer, Cardiovascular, From the Heart, Nutrition, Preventative Care

I think of myself as fairly tech-savvy but somehow I have missed out on a pretty basic tech health item.  I saw a patient yesterday with Acute Intermittent Porphyria, who was kind enough to let me photograph her USB Medical Alert Bracelet. These make lots of sense for persons with conditions who might benefit from… Continue Reading

Filed Under: Medical Blog

I read the American Family Physician journal, sent to all members of the American Academy of Family Physicians and anyone else who subscribes, and sometimes an issue comes out with a few pearls that I want to pass on. The Oct 15, 2016 edition was one of them and here are a few of the… Continue Reading

Filed Under: In the News, Public Health, Tropical Medicine, Women's Health

I read the American Family Physician fairly regularly and sometimes I come across an article good enough to summarize here.  In the May 1, 2016 issue is an article titled, “Top 20 Research Studies of 2015 for Primary Care Physicians.”  In each AFP is a section called POEMs, for “Patient Oriented Evidence that Matters,” and… Continue Reading

Filed Under: AFP in 2 Minutes

For years I’ve sent my newly diagnosed and poorly controlled patients with type 2 diabetes to diabetes education classes.  There they are taught many helpful skills, including how to test their blood sugars at home, how to watch for complications of diabetes like foot ulcers and infections, and a big focus is on how to… Continue Reading

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The opioid addiction and abuse crisis in America is still in full swing.  Few argue that this is a huge problem.  Drug overdose is the most common cause of accidental death in the U.S. and opioid overdose causes over half of these deaths.  Prescription opioid overdose deaths caused nearly twice as many deaths as heroin… Continue Reading

Filed Under: In the News, Public Health

I came across a very interesting article today in The Health Care Blog by Saurabh Jah, MD titled Overoutrage and the Assymetric Skepticism of Healthcare Journalists. This addresses a concept I’d not heard of until now. Here is a quote from the above linked article: “Overoutrage is excessive moral outrage. Outrage is excessive anger. Anger is… Continue Reading

Filed Under: Opinion/Editorial, Public Health

I’ve been catching up on reading some recent American Family Physician issues since returning from Christmas vacation with family and saw a few tips I thought I’d pass along. Chew gum after surgery:  One of my favorite parts of AFP is the Cochrane for Clinicians section in every issue.  The Cochrane Library is a collection… Continue Reading

Filed Under: Medical Blog, Public Health