Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Do doctors know?

Medical doctors. MDs. They can be your best friend. If you’ve had a stroke they spent a lot 
Sherrington
A great MD/Scientist
that advanced stroke recovery
of their decade-plus of schooling training to save your life and save as much of your brain as they possibly could. When some MDs show up at the Pearly Gates, St. Peter is going to provide velveteen pathways to the VIP room.

BUT.

Let’s be clear about this, your doctor is probably not a scientist. Very few are. The ones that are usually work at major academic institutions. Think Johns Hopkins.

A few quick points here…
1. Without a doubt, a rare few MDs do great, great scientific work that promotes medicine. 

2. Almost all medical science is developed by neuroscientists, biologists, chemists, etc. Scientists develop treatments (from x-ray
Taub
A great
psychologist who
advanced stroke recovery.

to antibiotics) and MDs make it illegal for anyone beyond themselves to prescribe them. Sometimes they make great gatekeepers, but they often screw it up. 


Most MDs don’t do science, don’t do clinical trials and are not qualified as scientists. Many MDs are not qualified to interpret the science they need to do their jobs, especially if they are not specialized in the area in question. Asking a GP about leading-edge rheumatoid arthritis treatment is like asking a soccer player about basketball’s triangle offence; they may know, but they probs don’t. Even asking, say, a neurologist about, say, migraine is a mistake. How many pathologies do neurologists treat? Countless, that’s how many. Will they be an expert on migraine? Maybe.

So what does this mean to you, dear survivor? It means you have to do your own research, and find your own experts.

There is a bit of good news…if you are willing to work a bit. If you go to PubMed and ask it your questions (i.e.: aphasia stroke recovery) articles by scientists who are experts will bubble up and from there it’s just a hop-skip and jump to their email address. Ask the scientists on the bleeding edge your question. (Hint; be clear, specific and respectful for the best results.) Hack through the pseudo-scientific gobbledygook of medicine (haven’t you exhausted that already anyway?) and get to the extraordinary.

Off you go… 

3 comments:

Tamara said...

Fortunately I've been doing my research from the beginning and have read a lot about mind-body medicine. In rehabilitation clinics they just wanted me to accept being disabled, but I keep looking for research that will give a a bit more recovery. My amygdala is nearly coming out of my nose screaming, because disabled is ugly and ugly is not safe. So I've started meditating. Research showed that you can actually shrink the amygdala. Research by Sara Lazar showed neurobiological changes in the brain within 8 weeks. I have only been meditating for 2 weeks and continuation is difficult, because there are often things that interrupt the routine, like a family day, or men installing a new kitchen. Stress is the biggest obstacle in my recovery and I know this, but no doctor ever told me. Using a walker when you're in your thirties/fourties is emotionally stressful, but to them you're functional and safe. That's all they care about. You just have to stop thinking you look like a moron.

Elizabeth Apple said...

Thank you! I try to read and do my research through Pubmed. I wish that more full articles were available to patients. I can pay $35 an article so end up reading a lot of abstracts when I wish I had the full pdf article.

Elizabeth Apple said...

Thank you! I try to read and do my research through Pubmed. I wish that more full articles were available to parients. I can pay $35 an article so end up reading a lot of abstracts when I wish I had the full pdf article.

Blog Archive