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Overkill : when modern medicine goes too far

Author: Paul A Offit
Publisher: New York, NY : Harper, an imprint of HarperCollinsPublishers, [2020] ©2020
Edition/Format:   Print book : English : First editionView all editions and formats
Summary:
"An acclaimed medical expert and patient advocate offers an eye-opening look at many common and widely used medical interventions that have been shown to be far more harmful than helpful. Yet, surprisingly, despite clear evidence to the contrary, most doctors continue to recommend them. Modern medicine has significantly advanced in the last few decades as more informed practices, thorough research, and incredible
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Genre/Form: Popular Work
Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: Paul A Offit
ISBN: 9780062947499 0062947494
OCLC Number: 1109789586
Description: viii, 276 pages ; 24 cm
Contents: Prologue: Ignoring James Lind --
Part I: Infections. Treating fever can prolong or worsen illness ; Finishing the antibiotic course is often unnecessary ; Antibiotic drugs don't treat pinkeye --
Part II: Supplements and drugs. Vitamin D supplements aren't a cure-all ; Supplemental antioxidants increase the risk of cancer and heart disease ; Testosterone for "Low T' is dangerous and unnecessary ; Baby aspirin doesn't prevent first strokes or first heart attacks --
Part III: Food and over-the-counter products. Embrace allergenic foods for infants ; The false security of sunblock ; Avoid reflux medicines for fussy babies --
Part IV: Cancer screening. Prostrate cancer screening programs do more harm than good ; Thyroid cancer screening programs don't save lives ; Breast cancer screening programs aren't exactly as advertised --
Part V: Surgery. Heart stents don't prolong lives ; Surgery for knee arthritis is unnecessary ; Don't remove mercury dental fillings --
Part VI: Common beliefs. Vitamin C doesn't treat or prevent colds ; Don't ice sprains ; Teething doesn't cause fever --
Epilogue: Choosing wisely.
Responsibility: Paul A. Offit, MD.

Abstract:

"An acclaimed medical expert and patient advocate offers an eye-opening look at many common and widely used medical interventions that have been shown to be far more harmful than helpful. Yet, surprisingly, despite clear evidence to the contrary, most doctors continue to recommend them. Modern medicine has significantly advanced in the last few decades as more informed practices, thorough research, and incredible breakthroughs have made it possible to successfully treat and even eradicate many serious ailments. Illnesses that once were a death sentence, such as HIV and certain forms of cancer, can now be managed, allowing those affected to live longer, healthier lives. Because of these advances, we now live 30 years longer than we did 100 years ago. But while we have learned much in the preceding decades that has changed our outlook and practices, we still rely on medical interventions that are vastly out of date and can adversely affect our health. We all know that finishing the course of antibiotics prevents the recurrence of illness, that sunscreens block harmful UV rays that cause skin cancer, and that all cancer-screening programs save lives. But do scientific studies really back this up? In this game-changing book, Dr. Paul A. Offit debunks fifteen common medical interventions that have long been considered gospel despite mounting evidence of their adverse effects, from vitamins, sunscreen, fever-reducing medicines, and eyedrops for pink eye to more serious procedures like heart stents and knee surgery. Analyzing how these practices came to be, the biology of what makes them so ineffective and harmful, and the medical culture that continues to promote them, Overkill informs patients to help them advocate for their health. By educating ourselves, we can ask better questions about some of the drugs and surgeries that are all too readily available--and all too heavily promoted"--

Modern medicine has significantly advanced in the last few decades: more informed practices, thorough research, and incredible breakthroughs have made it possible to successfully treat and even eradicate many serious ailments. We now live 30 years longer than we did 100 years ago, but we still rely on medical interventions that are vastly out of date and can adversely affect our health. Offit debunks fifteen common medical interventions that have long been considered gospel despite mounting evidence of their adverse effects. By educating ourselves, we can bring a much-needed skepticism to drugs and surgeries that are heavily promoted, often to the patients' disadvantage. -- adapted from jacket

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