Treatment That Causes Exactly What It Is Supposed To Cure
Here's a dilemma.
A doctor gives a boy Ritalin or Adderol because he is “hyper”. Unfortunately, these drugs are just as likely to cause and increase the “hyper” condition as they are to subdue it. As the boy then begins to really bounce off the wall, does the doctor double the dose or take the kid back off the stuff?
Many years ago, the sweetest elderly lady I ever met came to see me because her hands were shaking terribly, she was suffering from anxiety and she couldn't sleep. She explained that she had been somewhat like this for some time but that it had gotten far worse during the last month since she had been given a certain prescription.
I looked up the drug in the Physician's Desk Reference, which lists all the drugs in use. While it did say it could be used to treat tremors, anxiety and insomnia, these were also the first three items on a long list of what it caused. When I showed this to the lady, all she could say was that the doctor who had prescribed it “seems like such a nice young man.”
This phenomenon is often seen throughout medicine: Antidepressants causing worse depression (even suicidal thoughts), antibiotics for ear resulting in a three-fold increase of ear infections, chemotherapy causing cancer and flu shots causing flu. This isn't rocket science. It isn't science at all. Today's fad treatments will be forgotten (except by the people they damaged or by the family and friends of those the treatments killed) as soon as the next fads in an endless lineup come to market.
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