THE JOYFUL REDUCTION OF UNCERTAINTY

Tag Archives: medicine

Anxiety Sampler Kits

The best thing about personalized medicine is that it’s obviously right. The worst thing is we mostly have no idea how to do it. We know that different people respond to different treatments. But outside a few special cases like … Continue reading

Nighttime Ventilation Survey Results

Thanks to the 129 people who tried altering their nighttime carbon dioxide levels after my post on this, and who reported back to me. There was no difference between people who pre-registered for the study and people who didn’t, on … Continue reading

Carbon Dioxide: An Open Door Policy

[Content note: reading this post might cause feelings of suffocation or provoke panic attacks in susceptible individuals. Epistemic status is very speculative.] Last month I moved into a small cottage behind a big group house. The cottage is lovely. The … Continue reading

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Cancer Progress: Much More Than You Wanted To Know

Official statistics say we are winning the War on Cancer. Cancer incidence rates, mortality rates, and five-year-survival rates have generally been moving in the right direction over the past few decades. More skeptical people offer an alternate narrative. Cancer incidence … Continue reading

Did A Melatonin Patent Inspire Current Dose Confusion?

Yesterday I wrote about melatonin, mentioning that most drugstore melatonin supplements were 10x or more the recommended dose. A commenter on Facebook pointed me to an interesting explanation of why. Dr. Richard Wurtman, an MIT scientist who helped discover melatonin’s … Continue reading

Cost Disease In Medicine: The Practical Perspective

Sometimes I imagine quitting my job and declaring war on cost disease in medicine. I would set up a practice with a name like Cheap-O Psychiatry. The corny name would be important. It would be a statement of values. It … Continue reading

HPPD And The Specter Of Permanent Side Effects

I recently worked with a man who took LSD once in college and never stopped hallucinating. It’s been ten years now and it’s still going. We can control it with medication, but take the meds away and it starts right … Continue reading

Should Psychiatry Test For Lead More?

Dr. Matthew Dumont treated a 44 year old woman with depression, body dysmorphia, and psychosis. She failed to respond to most of the ordinary treatments, failed to respond to electroconvulsive therapy, and seemed generally untreatable until she mentioned offhandedly that … Continue reading

Powerless Placebos

[All things that have been discussed here before, but some people wanted it all in a convenient place] The most important study on the placebo effect is Hróbjartsson and Gøtzsche’s Is The Placebo Powerless?, updated three years later by a … Continue reading

Against Rat Park

I. Rat Park is a famous study in which lab rats were kept in a really nice habitat that satisfied their every need. Contrary to the usual results with lab animals, scientists couldn’t get these happier rats addicted to drugs. … Continue reading