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Getting from knowledge to action - Input Junkie
May 31st, 2009
08:48 am

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Getting from knowledge to action
http://thelastpsychiatrist.com/2009/05/ramachandrans_mirror.html#more
Ramachandran's mirror technique is medical school stuff. Everyone knows it. Everyone. If you don't know it children on the street kick you in the shins. If you were in a coma during medical school then you still would have picked it up from a trillion other places, from Scientific American to Discover to Time Magazine.

Of course I knew the significance of the mirror. Of course I knew how to do it. I just never did. It never even occurred to me to do it.

The mirror occurred to me; doing it never occurred to me. I'll tell you that every single time I saw her stump, the theoretical implications of Ramachnadran's mirror immediately came to my mind, I imagined the mirror. But I never tried it.

Not just me, but it also never occurred to the ten years of doctors she'd seen in her life. Absolutely every single doctor knows about the mirror. Not one tried it.

Any thoughts on remembering that you might, just possibly, do something?

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From:nancylebov
Date:May 31st, 2009 06:47 pm (UTC)
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It might be more of an American popular science thing so far as being well known is concerned.

Also, I'm reading a book called Medicine and Culture about the differences in medical practice between the US, the UK, France, and Germany-- the differences are considerable, and it's not just treatment, there's also variation in what's considered a disease. It's not surprising if there's variation in what's taught in the medical schools.

Edited at 2009-05-31 06:51 pm (UTC)
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From:siderea
Date:May 31st, 2009 10:49 pm (UTC)
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Oooh. What do you think of the book? Sounds like something I would enjoy.
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From:nancylebov
Date:June 1st, 2009 01:09 am (UTC)
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I've only read the first couple of chapters, but really interesting and doesn't contradict anything I already know.

Medicine and Culture-- here are the amazon reviews.
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From:inertiacrept
Date:May 31st, 2009 06:33 pm (UTC)
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This is a great article that I almost missed because I'm lazy about clicking on lj-cuts. Glad this caught me on a Sunday.
From:n5red
Date:May 31st, 2009 06:49 pm (UTC)
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After my experience with doctors over the past few years, I have reached the conclusion that I am the one who is ultimately responsible for my own health care. I weight every decision based on what I know about the risk/reward. Some decisions are easy, like letting a doctor take a chunk out of my eyebrow this Tuesday. Worst case, I wind up with a scar in my eyebrow. Not a high risk.
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From:nancylebov
Date:May 31st, 2009 06:52 pm (UTC)
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Having read and heard a lot about medical treatments and their outcomes, I'm forced to the conclusion that modern medicine is half-assed. It can do miracles even though it only has one functioning buttock, but still....
From:n5red
Date:May 31st, 2009 06:59 pm (UTC)
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Sometimes. Sometime that will do lots of unnecessary damage.

Right now I keep telling them that the open heart surgery they want to do is not going to happen. In fact, any procedure which involves drugging me out of my mind is not going to happen.
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From:landley
Date:May 31st, 2009 11:34 pm (UTC)
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I was pre-nursing in college, almost 20 years ago, and this was a well-known problem then. Medical research is sponsored by drug companies, trying to find drugs or implants, things they can sell. Things like chest percussion for cystic fibrosis is something anyone can do, therefore it's not "real medicine" because you can't sell it. Even our surgical techniques require enormously expensive equipment to be bought and amortized from pharmeceutical conglomerates, and consume anesthesia and antibiotics and so on. Even our physiotheraphy is mostly centered around expensive exercise and monitoring equipment.

This is also part of the reason chiroproctors and acupuncture and midwives and such have never taken off in this country. If it doesn't have expensive consumables some third party can profit on, it can't _possibly_ be real science, and certainly won't get any research dollars.

Heck, these days the word "therapy" itself has been co-opted to mean "drug regimen". The federal government used to sponsor research into non-drug therapies, but the drug companies spend a huge amount of money lobbying every year, and we have the best congress money can buy...
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