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Monday, January 28, 2008

Indication Creep: Overmedicating Gullible Patients

21 Shvat 5768

Some title, hmm? Indication Creep sounds as if it refers to those nasty people referenced in my previous post. But it's actually about doctors who purposely overload sick people (the Indication) with too much medication (the Creep). It's a whole other world of selfish behavior. The motive is greed at the corporate, industrial level. The result can be lingering illness or untimely death.

Bear in mind that only some medical organizations are guilty of the crime. Not every doctor deserves scorn (some doctors have no idea of the abuse going on). Educate yourself about the problem when you click on:

More money, less health -- baltimoresun.com

and

Indication creep: physician beware -- H├ębert and Stanbrook 177 (7 ...
Physicians have a duty to be vigilant regarding this phenomenon and to avoid being enablers of the scientifically unsound creep of prescribing indications.


and
Journal Medicine: Indication creep: physician beware

Ahhh, if only we'd obey the Golden Rule and do no harm to our neighbor...




Here's a true story sbout how a controlled diet and reduced medication IMPROVED patient health! Read on.

MODIFIED ATKINS DIET CAN CUT EPILEPTIC SEIZURES IN ADULTS
--High-fat, low-carb diet may be an option when other treatments fail

The Atkins-like diet, which has shown promise for seizure control in children, may offer a new lifeline for patients when drugs and other treatments fail or cause complications.

For almost a century, doctors have prescribed an eating plan called the ketogenic diet to treat children with epilepsy. This diet often consists of a short period of fasting, strictly limits fluids and drastically restricts carbohydrates... Some of the largest studies to scientifically test this diet's efficacy took place at Johns Hopkins in the mid-1990s, led by pediatric neurologists John Freeman, M.D., and Eileen Vining, M.D.

In 2002, Johns Hopkins researchers began testing a modified version of the Atkins diet in children with epilepsy... When studies showed that the new diet prevented or curtailed seizures in children, the researchers began testing it for efficacy and ease of use in adults.

Reporting on the results in the February issue of Epilepsia, Eric H. Kossoff, M.D., an assistant professor of neurology and pediatrics at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, said ...The regimen restricted them to 15 grams of carbohydrates a day. "That's a few strawberries, some vegetables, or a bit of bread," says Kossoff. The diet offers most of its calories from fat-eggs, meats, oils and heavy cream, with as much protein and no-carb beverages as patients want.

... Results showed that about half the patients had experienced a 50 percent reduction in the frequency of their seizures by the first clinic visit. About a third of the patients halved the frequency of seizures by three months. Side effects linked with the diet, such as a rise in cholesterol or triglycerides, were mild...

... Though the modified Atkins diet won't be a good fit for all patients, says Kossoff, "it opens up another therapeutic option for adults trying to decide between medication, surgery and electrical stimulation to treat intractable seizures."

For additional information, go to:

http://www.hopkinsneuro.org/epilepsy/doc.cfm/expert/Eric_Kossoff

and

http://www.hopkinsneuro.org/index.cfm

and

http://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/Press_releases/2005/12_05_05.html


***

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Coping with a Medical Crisis?
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