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Saturday, June 21, 2008

Why so many errors?

This is the opening paragraph of an excellent article reprinted from Health Beat on Alternet.

"Despite all of the talk about medical errors and patient safety, almost no one likes to talk about diagnostic errors. Yet doctors misdiagnose patients more often than we would like to think. Sometimes they diagnose patients with illnesses they don't have. Other times, the true condition is missed. All in all, diagnostic errors account for 17 percent of adverse events in hospitals, according to the Harvard Medical Practice Study, a landmark study that looks at medical errors."

I have written on this topic before and find it still an unaddressed issue even with "knee-jerk" conferences popping up on the topic.

I draw on my experience of learning by osmosis from my physician father who was routinely contacted by other doctors for consults on their patients because of his outstanding diagnostic skills.

Today, everything seems to be based on lab tests, yet the results of the lab tests are not understood in terms on human physiology. Everything seems to be based on rote medicine, that it, if you present with A, B, or C and/or have certain lab results, then it seems to follow that you have a certain "disease".

I see this frequently in people who contact me for the consultations I provide.

My consultations are educational. I offer my service to help educate a client so they can better mediate within mainstream medicine (MSM) to advocate for their health.

I do not diagnose, I just help you try to get the best diagnosis possible from your health care provider, so you can get the best care; even if you don't have Carte Blanche insurance like Members of Congress.

I can cite many examples of this but one is very recent.

I work on occasion with a person who has me review their lab work. I have a very unique system of eliciting nutritional deficiencies and weaknesses in body systems that I can determine from lab results.

Lab results are tricky in some ways, but one of the key issues today is that labs are not adjusting to the most current results in the tests.

For example, the Clinical Endocrinologists changed the range for TSH testing in 2003 and then again in 2006. The current upper limit in the range is considered to be 2.7

A report I reviewed recently for this client showed the TSH above 4. The local hospital lab relies on a range up to 5.

Additionally, the report showed mild cholesterol elevation and elevated triglycerides.

I am a proponent of the Cholesterol Myth. I am also a proponent of the fact that elevated triglycerides can be deadly.

I am also a proponent of healthy thyroid function, which you do not achieve with Synthroid.

The optimal range for a well functioning thyroid is between 1 and 2.5. I like 2 as a personal choice. If you are below this to a great degree then it is likely you do have hyperthyroid. If you are above this, it is likely you have hypothyroid. In both cases you may have low adrenal function, but with hypothyroid you will have elevated cholesterol more than 80 percent of the time.

This person's licensed "health care professional" wanted only to offer cholesterol lowering prescriptions.

Not only was this the wrong diagnosis, it was blatant inability to understand what was actually going on ion their patent's body, and disregard for a very risky situation related to elevated triglycerides and low thyroid function (a heart risk in the making).

Ladies and Gentlemen, we are in the midst of a health care crisis. Universal insurance is not the single answer.

Insurance creates a serious risk to your health. When your health care provider can use only the cookie cutter approach to health so that your insurance will pay them, there is no incentive to do good diagnostic work.

These things need correction, and they are needed now!

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