The Case for Opening (some) Pools In COVID19 Pandemic

The COVID crisis has decimated water exercise. Can we rethink pool closures? A significant number of my older patients relied on pools for their fitness. During a pandemic, you can stay active or fit only if you have good legs and joints. Walkers, runners, and cyclists have no problem; they play outside in the Spring… Continue reading The Case for Opening (some) Pools In COVID19 Pandemic

Questioning Your Doctor is Ok

I received a good question(s) from a reader: In your “Changing the culture” posting there is the comment: “Patients seeking medical treatment should not assume a prescribed therapy is beneficial just because a doctor says it is.”… How then does a patient evaluate a proposed treatment in a way that they aren’t thwarting a doctor from performing what may… Continue reading Questioning Your Doctor is Ok

Cardiology Podcast Every Friday

My editors at Medscape warned me years ago that many people, especially younger ones, read a lot less. This saddened me because I’ve spent a great deal of time learning to write. One of America’s most accomplished writers, Malcolm Gladwell, began his podcast because he worried about not reaching younger people. Each week, I spend a… Continue reading Cardiology Podcast Every Friday

The Truth on Cancer Screening

This week is Cancer Screen Week. It’s a one-sided campaign sponsored by industry and the American Cancer Society that urges people to get screened. The truth is that the scientific evidence for cancer screening is not convincing. What’s more, screening comes with potential harms. I know; it’s counter-intuitive, but it’s what the evidence says. Benjamin… Continue reading The Truth on Cancer Screening

Inflammation, Ablation, Fats, LDL, etc .. My review of ESC 2017

The European Cardiology Congress, ESC as it is called, has grown into the largest medical meeting in the world. This year, more than 31,000 attendees from 153 countries came to Barcelona. I was busy. Here is an update of the big stories: Inflammation:  Experts agree that inflammation associates with heart disease. One of the keys… Continue reading Inflammation, Ablation, Fats, LDL, etc .. My review of ESC 2017

The Future of Predicting Heart Disease May Be In Your Genes

Three cases first: A young woman I met recently (outside the hospital) told me her Dad died suddenly a couple of years ago. He was fine, then he was stone cold dead. The wife went outside for a minute and came back to find her husband dead in the chair. There were no warnings. No… Continue reading The Future of Predicting Heart Disease May Be In Your Genes

Statins, Like All Medicines, Are Neither Good Nor Bad

We have to talk about drugs. No, not illicit drugs, but medications used by doctors and patients. Plaintiff attorneys run ads on TV that fool people into thinking certain meds are bad. The current one I deal with is the clot-blocking drug rivaroxaban (Xarelto.) Before that, it was dabigatran (Pradaxa). If, or when, the makers… Continue reading Statins, Like All Medicines, Are Neither Good Nor Bad

Four Crucial Questions To Ask Your Doctor

I am seeing an increasing number of patients who did not know they had a choice about taking a medicine or having a procedure. Why did you have that heart cath? A: My doctor said I should. Why are you on that medicine? A: My doctor prescribed it. It’s time we re-review the basic four… Continue reading Four Crucial Questions To Ask Your Doctor

I am changing…

Seven years have passed since I started this blog. In that time… I have learned some basics about writing. (I almost wrote, “I have learned to write,” which would have been foolish, since, writing-wise, I have plenty to learn.) I have learned to stay upright on the bicycle. Concussions made me understand that the joys… Continue reading I am changing…

Are women with AF being under-treated with ablation?

This post is an introduction to commentary I made recently over at theHeart.org on Medscape. Gender features in the discussion, but there are lessons for men and women with AF. *** A large study from a group of Stanford researchers made three big observations on AF ablation: Women, compared with men, presented for first AF… Continue reading Are women with AF being under-treated with ablation?