Medicine

We Deserve to Know More About Prescription Drugs

Roojin Habibi | Posted 04.15.2014 | Canada Politics
Roojin Habibi

Why is Health Canada only letting doctors and the public know part of the story about the safety and effectiveness of new pharmaceutical drugs? Inadequate information can be as dangerous as misinformation. Here's how.

Why Your Doctor Could Be Biased

Stephen Hwang | Posted 04.15.2014 | Canada Living
Stephen Hwang

In a recent study researchers called doctors' offices in Toronto while playing the role of a person looking for a family physician. Doctors' offices were 58 per cent more likely to offer an appointment if the caller mentioned that he or she had a high-status job than if he or she mentioned receiving welfare.

This Doctor Treats Poverty Like a Disease

Trudy Lieberman | Posted 04.13.2014 | Canada Impact
Trudy Lieberman

What would you think if your doctor handed you a prescription that recommended filing your tax returns or applying for food or income benefit programs instead of the usual medicines for high blood pressure or diabetes? You'd probably say the physician was nuts. Tax refunds? Food? What do they have to do with making you healthier?

Not Everyone With Mental Illness Needs Medication

Arthur Gallant | Posted 04.07.2014 | Canada Living
Arthur Gallant

Don't get me wrong; medication is a great treatment option for people with mental illness but it is only one component of treatment. I have taken medication in the past and likely will again in the future. At this point in time, my medical team and I agree it should not be apart of my treatment plan.

The Surprising Way Bacteria 'Talks' To Each Other

Jason Tetro | Posted 03.16.2014 | Canada Living
Jason Tetro

2012-05-28-GermGuyBanner.jpg The results suggested bacteria are continually in communication with one another. When times get dire, they attempt to find anyone who might have resistance and be willing to pass it on. Once there is a yes, a crowd appears, all hoping for the same gift. Once they get it, they head off to do the same.

End Of 'Emergency Room' Is The Beginning Of The Conversation

Andrew Williamson | Posted 02.25.2014 | Canada British Columbia
Andrew Williamson

Tonight's episode of "Emergency Room: Life and Death at VGH" is about beginnings and endings, which is fitting for a series finale.Over the course of the series, we have seen so many amazing examples of the incredible dedication that VGH's emergency department staff has. And tonight, we get a chance to see students at the beginning of their journey.

The Mobile App That Helps Patients Monitor Their Own Recovery

University of Toronto News | Posted 02.21.2014 | Canada
University of Toronto News

Dr. Joshua Liu is a co-founder and CEO of Seamless Mobile Health, which lets patients monitor their recovery after surgery with a mobile app -- and get help when they need it.

Revisiting An Age-Old Thai Therapy to Relieve Diarrhea

Jason Tetro | Posted 02.17.2014 | Canada Living
Jason Tetro

Back in 1913, the Thai Army suffered from an outbreak of dysentery and searched for any possible option to control the scourge. At the time, a local traditional medicine expert offered the troops what he called Krisanaklan Trakilane.Ninety-nine years later, the components of the wonder drug were finally isolated.

How the Discovery of Insulin Helped My Family

University of Toronto News | Posted 04.15.2014 | Canada
University of Toronto News

Type 1 diabetes was once lethal but thanks to the Nobel prize-winning research conducted at the University of Toronto in 1921-22, had become a controllable condition through daily injections of insulin derived from cattle and pigs. My father's story reminds me about the importance of universities as places that create the space for big "what if" and "I wonder" questions.

Why We Need to Break the Silence on Eating Disorders

Andrew Boozary | Posted 02.22.2014 | Canada Living
Andrew Boozary

Are we doing enough about an illness that is silently eating away at both a mother and daughter? Twenty years ago, People Magazine headlined one of their covers with, "Princess Di: Struggle with Bulimia Brings a Puzzling Disease Out of the Shadows." Eating disorders still remain a private battle for millions of young women, and the faces of those affected are changing. We'd be downright wrong to frame it as a "rich, white girl's disease." How do you capture the cost of subjecting millions of women to calorie counting or religious scale stepping?

Probiotics May Improve Symptoms of Autism

Jason Tetro | Posted 02.08.2014 | Canada Living
Jason Tetro

A collaboration of over 20 American researchers found a possible answer although at first glance, it seemed ludicrous. The team looked at the bacteria in the gut of both normal and autistic children in the hopes of identifying any changes. Indeed, there were.

Code Red: Stephen Hawking's Brave New World, Episode 2

Carin Bondar | Posted 01.25.2014 | Canada TV
Carin Bondar

Welcome back to your Brave New World! Episode 2: Code Red of Stephen Hawking's Brave New World, the groundbreaking TV series on Discovery World, is all about cutting-edge technologies that reduce damage and loss in emergency situations.

How You Are Contributing To Antibiotic Resistance

Jason Tetro | Posted 01.23.2014 | Canada Living
Jason Tetro

2012-05-28-GermGuyBanner.jpgA new study out this week suggests that a third environment could become the next hotbed for antibiotic resistance. This one, however, may take the world by shock and signal that the end for antibiotics is indeed nigh. That resistance contributing environment is you, the human; specifically, your gut.

Why Medicine Needs the Humanities More Than Ever

Andrew Boozary | Posted 01.23.2014 | Canada Living
Andrew Boozary

The sciences continue to offer boundless promise for the profession and the sick. It's the humanities that will beg how we get there. In medicine, we are certainly privileged with "front row-seats on life" -- the worry is being glued to an iPhone amidst all that meaning.

Naomi Klein Calls for Economic Pressure on Egypt over Detention of Canadian Filmmaker, Doctor

Democracy Now! | Posted 01.23.2014 | Canada Politics
Democracy Now!

Two Canadian citizens -- acclaimed Toronto filmmaker John Greyson and medical doctor Tarek Loubani -- have been jailed for more than a month-and-a-hal...

Who Paid for Your Doctor's Opinion?

Kapil Khatter | Posted 11.30.2013 | Canada
Kapil Khatter

There are academic pharmaceutical researchers still publishing independent, peer-reviewed articles, just as there are still farmers who have small farms with the kinds of smiling animals one sees in children's books. But more and more pharmaceutical research is done factory farm-style, with organized precision and efficiency, all paid for by drug companies. Welcome to new science.

Please Don't Poach Quebec's Doctors in Our Time of Need

Beverly Akerman | Posted 11.13.2013 | Canada Politics
Beverly Akerman

Dear Lakeridge Health, This week, you started a direct mail campaign targeting Quebec doctors, medical residents, and medical students. I agree with your nearly 500 "likers" on Facebook: it's one great ad. But I'm writing to ask you if things aren't tough enough here in Quebec right now without you Ontarians trying to lure away our professionals? Who suffers most directly if our doctors and medical students leave? (Hint: it's not the PQ!)

Drug Companies Are Hiding Research

Dr Mike Hart | Posted 11.10.2013 | Canada
Dr Mike Hart

What's evidence based medicine? Drug companies are hiding research Drug companies may not be publishing complete and comprehensive data that could a...

One Man's Poo Is Another Man's Prescription

Jason Tetro | Posted 10.17.2013 | Canada Living
Jason Tetro

2012-05-28-GermGuyBanner.jpgFecal therapy is here to stay. With the number of options to treat acute and chronic gastrointestinal disorders shrinking, a means to not only treat but also cure cannot be disregarded. People may never get used to the smell of fecal microbiota therapy, but I know they'll definitely get used to the benefits. Let's rePOOPulate.

Bulk Drug Purchasing Is Too Good to Be True

Nadeem Esmail | Posted 10.02.2013 | Canada Politics
Nadeem Esmail

As part of their struggle with budget realities and the growing cost of health care, Canada's provinces continue to work on bulk purchasing agreements for pharmaceuticals as a way to save money. Unfortunately, the recent release from the Council of the Federation (the council of Canada's premiers) suffers from the typical one-sided approach that characterizes much of the drug policy discussion. Yes, there are up front savings to be had. But there's no such thing as a free lunch.

Refugee Care: We Are Standing Up To Say That This Is Wrong

Claudel Petrin-Desrosiers | Posted 08.14.2013 | Canada
Claudel Petrin-Desrosiers

Today, as we celebrate the National Day of Action against the Refugees Healthcare cuts on June 17th, I decided to interview Benjamin Langer, a third-year medical student, to enlighten Canadian readers regarding the budget cuts in Interim Federal Health Program (IFHP).

Bulk Buying Pharmaceuticals Isn't All It's Cracked Up to Be

Nadeem Esmail | Posted 07.24.2013 | Canada Politics
Nadeem Esmail

Bulk purchasing of pharmaceuticals has attracted significant attention of late as Canada's provinces work to balance access to medicines and their benefits with budgetary realities. Unfortunately for Canadians, insufficient consideration is being given to the tradeoffs and risks associated with bulk purchasing agreements.

Why We Need More Late-Night Doctors

Dr. Raghu Venugopal | Posted 07.02.2013 | Canada Impact
Dr. Raghu Venugopal

It is possible to think of Médecins Sans Frontières' (MSF) medical work like a scalpel, which we use during surgery. The sharp end is at the bedside with patients and families. It's the crucial end -- and nothing can replace it. But behind the blade is its attachment and then the handle from which to hold the blade. These parts are crucial too.

The Kindness of Strangers: Helping Women With VVF in Chad

Dr. Raghu Venugopal | Posted 06.19.2013 | Canada
Dr. Raghu Venugopal

Part of the experience of working with Doctors Without Borders is not just work but also taking a break. The work in the project site is seven days a week most of the time, but then after two months or so, we get a break in the capital city. I can't quite say my RnR was what I had intended.

Doctors Are Under the Influence of Pharma Drugs

Ritika Goel | Posted 06.02.2013 | Canada
Ritika Goel

Why do so many doctors still think they are invincible to the influence of the pharmaceutical industry? Attractive, well-dressed, charismatic drug reps with pearly smiles and shiny flow charts still wait in waiting rooms. Lectures and conferences still occur where lunch is paid for by the pharmaceutical industry. Canada has banned the use of TV, print and radio advertising of drugs directly to consumers because we recognize that this information should come from unbiased sources. Why then do we allow so much drug promotion to physicians? As a medical community, we have to say no to pharmaceutical influences on our practice.