CategoryHealth and Wellness Archives - Knope Clinic
The Third Leading Cause of Death in America
Many of you have read the recent study by Johns Hopkins researchers that showed medical errors are now the third leading cause of death in America. Deaths from medical mistakes – some 251,000 people per year – are outnumbered only by deaths from heart disease and cancer. Medical mistakes have become a national epidemic.
Reasons for medical errors: I am going to explore some of the factors that have led to so many medical errors. … Read the rest
Before we get started, a quick disclaimer: No animals were harmed in the making of this newsletter. However, I cannot say the same for my awesome medical assistant, Sheri. Before you get too upset with me for attacking Sheri, understand that she asked for it! She literally asked me to write this newsletter about a conversation we had about smart phones, during which time she was mercilessly humiliated and abused. When I asked her why she wanted me to write the newsletter, Sheri sarcastically quipped, “For the good of mankind.… Read the rest
During challenging times in American history, we the people have used various strategies to get a respite from the problems of our day. Sometimes we become so disgruntled by human behavior that we look to animals instead of people for inspiration. I suspect that one of the reasons for this phenomenon is that animals cannot talk. Animals are not capable of lying to us. Animals are more pure. They just do what they were born to do.… Read the rest
A sentinel species is an animal used by human beings to detect early threats in the environment. The classic example is the canary in the coal mine. Well into the 20th century, canaries were carried into the mines to detect the presence of deadly carbon monoxide gas. Canaries react to carbon monoxide faster than people, so if the canary dies, it is a warning to the miner that he has only a few minutes to get out.… Read the rest
“There is nothing new under the sun” is an idiom that dates back to biblical times. In some ways, it still feels true today. This is because much of human nature has not changed over time. If we pick up a newspaper we see that politicians are still lying, poverty is still with us and people are still being murdered every day – usually at the hands of someone they knew. On the positive side, we still see acts of heroism.… Read the rest
On some level, I would like to believe that I am a compassionate man. I really do care about people. However, I do not operate under the delusion that I was endowed with a copy of the Mother Theresa gene. When problem solving – especially when dealing with weight loss, smoking cessation, or substance abuse – I take a rather direct approach with my patients. As a result, I have been told on more than one occasion that I am “mean.” Really?!… Read the rest
Cholesterol-lowering drugs called statins – medications such as Zocor, Crestor, Lipitor, and Pravachol – have been getting their share of bad publicity. Recent press reports have shown possible links between the use of statin drugs and the development of dementia and diabetes. If this were not enough, a new study published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology has shown that the drug Zocor may actually impair the development of aerobic fitness associated with exercise.… Read the rest
As you have all learned by now, this has been a particularly ugly cold and flu season. The flu epidemic hit the country about 5 weeks early this year. Fortunately, this epidemic has peaked and the number of cases is declining. However, you are still at risk of getting influenza – even if you have had the flu shot – and it will be the end of February before this is all over.
In addition to the flu there are two other infectious diseases that have been circulating throughout the Tucson community.… Read the rest
There are few topics that create more confusion among people than the question of whether or not to take an aspirin every day to prevent a heart attack. If you do take an aspirin, what is the best dose? Should you take a full 325 mg adult aspirin tablet or an 81 mg baby aspirin? Should you perhaps compromise and just lick an aspirin tablet every day?
The truth is that the correct answers to these questions are still evolving.… Read the rest
One of the most important aspects of health is having good posture. Though many people exercise their muscles in the gym, most don’t understand the role of a strong and flexible spine. This includes the thoracic spine—that part of the spine surrounded by your ribs.
Good posture, which I’ll define shortly, is necessary for everything we do, from walking to your mailbox to lifting objects. It is important in all sports. Once you become aware of the importance of good posture, you will begin to notice your posture and those around you.… Read the rest