Words of wisdom and miscellaneous facts by Dr. Wysong and others. This is an accumulation over several decades and the accuracy cannot be attested to.
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Modern medical intervention is the leading cause of death in the US. Screening, testing, and clinical laboratory errors contribute to that.
The underlying error is the assumption that the body is just an amalgam of parts and pieces all well known to science. The truth is, science does not even know what life is or what causes it. Present knowledge is but a drop in the body's ocean of mysteries.
But you wouldn't think that's the case as doctors spend their time reading data on a computer screen, rather than focusing on the patient in front of them. The materialistic space-age technology approach leads patients to believe the medical mission control will meticulously guide them to a healthy destiny.
Doctors, trained to think health is about data, school patients on test results and what the numbers mean. Patients, in turn, become conversant with the numbers and then judge their health accordingly. People tell grand stories to family and friends about their lab numbers. As for progress and health, well that depends on the lab numbers. You've heard it, it's the topic of conversation at home, family gatherings, and in restaurants or other social venues. "My cholesterol was _____, now it's ____. My sugar was the highest the doctor has seen, now it's _______. I need another PSA because the first one was suspicious." . . . and on and on. It gives people a deceptive sense of knowing and control. For many people, buffaloed by the idea of health by the numbers, it becomes an obsession and way of life.
There are hundreds of clinical laboratory tests and medical screening and diagnostic procedures. A person could go broke getting them all and then repeating them endlessly. This is not to mention the paranoia if any number falls outside the "normal" range. Some tests, if relevant to the condition and accurate, might be lifesaving, such as detection of a toxin. Others can be meaningless, inaccurate, and misleading leading to unnecessary and dangerous surgical or drug interventions.
There are two categories of tests. Screening is done to well people. Diagnostic tests are done to determine the cause and extent of existing disease. Although trivialized, both have dangers that must be evaluated.
With the Internet, people no longer need to rely on medical voices (trained, not educated) that may be inadequately informed or have a vested interest. If that's done, a world of caution emerges.
For example, PAP smears can reveal cervical cell changes, but nobody knows for certain what will lead to cervical cancer. A study from Bristol in 2003 found that 1000 women would need to be screened for 35 years to maybe prevent one death. Many, with suspect test results, will have biopsies which risk possible promotion of cancer, preterm births in subsequent pregnancies, and stress and anxiety which can induce disease. Four out of five who had high grade cervical changes were found to not go on to develop metastatic cancer.
Nevertheless, people who opt out of cervical screening are considered to be risk-takers, feckless, and ignorant. The risks of the procedure are ignored.
The prostate-specific antigen (PSA) blood test for prostate cancer screening, and bowel-cancer screening can't reliably predict what is benign and what is cancer. Treatment of the prostate can lead to incontinence and impotence. As for colon cancer screening, bowel tears can occur and treatments can cause a variety of side effects. (Actually, all so-called "side effects" minimize dangers, since the deleterious "side effects" are the actual effects of the procedure or drug.)
People believe heart disease can be prevented with cholesterol testing, as if cholesterol, a natural compound made by the body and essential to life, is a toxin. Some studies show about a one-in-60 chance of avoiding a heart attack by taking cholesterol-lowering statins for five years. But even that is a statistical uncertainty. What isn't uncertain are the deleterious effects of the drug.
If 2,000 women undergo breast cancer screening for 10 years, supposedly one will have her life prolonged because of it. Out of the same group, 10 other women will be treated even though their cancer would not have affected their lifespan. What is more likely is that the treatment will lead to consequences.
Then there are the x-rays, CT scans, ECGs, ultrasounds (recently found to cause brain abnormalities in fetuses), and so on. No mention is made of the dangers of these thought-to-be- benign invasions of the body. This is not to mention the terror created by false positives. On top of that, a large percentage of the population have abnormalities, including cancer, that will never lead to disease. A significant proportion of them will have procedures and be put on drugs that do lead to disease.
Screening and testing are options, not a foregone conclusion, hopefully made by a balance of informed pros and cons. When this is done, focus can be back where it should be, on your life choices and how to make the right ones to achieve health.
For starters, regularly exercise like you mean it, get into the sun and nature, put your bare feet on the ground (earthing), drink lots of pure water, eat raw as much as possible, use organic fruits and vegetables and free-range animal products, supplement intelligently, find creative physical, mental, and ethical challenges, enjoy loving relationships, learn from your mistakes, keep in mind that no matter what your past, your future is spotless, follow your conscience, seek truth not confirmation of beliefs, be respectful of the gift of life and in awe and wonder of every beat of your heart and breath you take.
When you do this, you will know you have done all you can and that, with rare exceptions, no test, procedure, or drug can better your outcome.
Words of Wisdom:
Almost all disease is self-induced. When ill, look inward to your own life choices, not outward for someone else to fix you.
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