Medicine by the numbers

Sunday, February 16, 2014 - 2:19pm

Follow this link to my NY Times op-ed on the new American College of Cardiology guidelines on the treatment of cardiovascular disease. I write how the guidelines that feature an "omnibus risk calculator" -- that name! -- are yet another example of the rise of actuarial practices in medicine, what I have coined "...

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How learning your genetic risk can transform you....

Sunday, February 16, 2014 - 2:12pm

The American Journal of Psychiatry reports two remarkable findings: After cognitively normal older adults learns they have the ε4 allele of the APOE gene that increases risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease dementia, they perform worse...

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My Top 10 Books…

Sunday, December 29, 2013 - 1:00am

Order nonspecific, this is my list. Each one has been a close friend with whom I’ve talked to and listened to and, after in some cases, after years apart, looked up and gotten back in touch with.

Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides

Sentimental Education by Gustave Flaubert

Lolita by Vladimir Nabakov

Blood Meridian by Cormac McCarthy

The Heart of the Matter by Graeme Greene

Let the Great World Spin by Colum McCann

Prescribing by...

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Been thinking about how we think about agitation in persons with dementia and how, as a result, we treat it, or really fail to treat it....

Friday, November 29, 2013 - 7:34pm

.... because we think of it as just a brain disease.

Yeats’ “Quarrel in Old Age” explains what I’m thinking. First stanza: imagine the speaker; a daughter, just off the phone following a call from the nursing home staff who care for her mother, and, in the second stanza, pay close attention to the punctuation.

“Where had her sweetness gone?
What fanatics invent
In this blind bitter town,
Fantasy or incident
Not worth thinking of...

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A diary of The Tragic Obsession Tour

Thursday, November 14, 2013 - 6:45am

Keeping a diary of the Tour... Reads not like a blog but a book with the oldest entry first (a "golb" perhaps?), so to read the latest diary entry, you'll have to click on "learn more" and scroll all-the-way-down....

October 11th -- Two big New York City events kicked off the tour: the New School's Fiction Forum on October 10th and the New York Academy of Medicine on October 11th.

Vigorous discussions of why write a novel instead of a biography or essay --...

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Alzheimer's disease: research, prevention and living with it.

Monday, October 28, 2013 - 6:39pm

Alzheimer’s Disease dementia effects five million people in the U.S. and as baby boomers age that number is expected to grow. But so far there’s been little success in treating the disease and slowing its debilitating progress. Now though, researchers are taking a different approach and looking at prevention. With the help of a $33 million grant by the Federal Government, neuroscientists will test a drug on at-risk populations before they get Alzheimer’s. I spoke...

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