New post up on Medscape/Cardiology: Ablation versus medicine as an intitial strategy for treating AF

Earlier this month I promised to put together teaching points from the Rich Peverley story. His was an interesting case of  sudden collapse that likely occurred as a result of atrial fibrillation therapy rather than atrial fibrillation itself. This was my original report: Important lessons from the collapse of NHL player Rich Peverley (BTW: It […]

Dear Girl Scouts: It’s time to cut out the cookies

Screen Shot 2014-03-16 at 10.37.01 AM

It happened while I was leaving a grocery store in the southeastern United States. The young girl who asked me if I wanted to buy Girl Scout cookies was strikingly perfect. She was thin, happy, and well spoken. So were her colleagues. The moms, too, were of healthy weight and cheer. It was as if […]

Important lessons from the collapse of NHL player Rich Peverley

Image from Wikipedia

Last night my Twitter stream lit up with the news that NHL player Rich Peverley collapsed from a heart arrhythmia. Fortunately, he was successfully treated, and is reported to be in good condition. Here is a link to the best story I could find. It sounds awfully significant. [Dr.] Salazar said of the treatment, “We […]

A clear-eyed look at treating the elderly with medicine

A recent case taught me a lot about how people perceive their medicines. I was trying to help a 92-year-old man get off some of his medicine. I can’t go into the details, but suffice to say, there was much opportunity to trim a long list of drugs, many of which were threatening his existence […]

The simple reason the medical-home study failed…

Screen Shot 2014-02-26 at 5.48.51 AM

This week, the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) published a comprehensive study that has major health implications. Major because the negative findings should change how Americans think about health and healthcare. Plus, the findings validate a belief this doctor holds as truth. First my belief, then the study. One blog is enough for […]

NSAIDs — Yet another dubious “health” product at CVS

Now that the ‘healthiness’ of products sold at CVS stores is a matter of public discourse, it seems a perfect time to mention the common pain relievers known as Non-Steroidal Anti-inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs). It just so happens that two FDA advisory committees are meeting today and tomorrow to discuss the cardiovascular risks of NSAIDs. The […]

The CVS tobacco decision is no small thing — Keep the chips and soda please

Yesterday, CVS Caremark announced that its 7600 stores will stop selling tobacco products. Company leadership said that selling tobacco is not consistent with being a health company. This decision, which takes effect in October 2014, will result in 2 billion less revenue. I am no business person, (though, as an observer of humans, I follow […]

100 is the new 80…If you are good to yourself (and lucky)

“There has been a change in your prescription,” said the eye doctor, a wise and bald man, who could have been mistaken for an economics professor at Princeton. “It’s improved?” the 30 year-old cardiologist asked. Better, improved, always the reflex for athletic cardiologists. “Doctor…you have been to the pinnacle and passed it. Your eyes, like […]

New post up on Cardiology Medscape: Lessons learned from the failure of Renal denervation for high blood pressure

Most people come by it honestly. They eat too much, move too little, skimp on sleep, take on too much stress and then succumb to buying larger clothes. The word we use in medicine is insidious. High blood pressure (hypertension – HTN) is one of the leading cardiovascular problems of this time. Some have called […]

Two gifts and a consolation prize

President Obama has a few good ideas. He wants Americans to discuss healthcare this holiday season. That’s actually a really good idea. This blog aims to do some good in the area of medicine and health. What follows are two incredibly important essays. The consolation prize is an excerpt from my recent Top Ten post. […]