EverythingHealth is designed to address the rapid changes in Science, Medicine, Health and Healing in the 21st Century. This site will sift through the vast amount of confusing data and simplify issues that are of interest to everyone interested in a healthy life and longevity. The writings on EverythingHealth are entirely my own views and opinions.
Dasche Withdraws - The Past Haunts
Tom Daschle, the "almost" head of Obama's Health and Human Services, has suddenly pulled his nomination due to investigation into his failure to pay $140,000 in income tax when it was due. (he has since made payment). Although Pres. Obama continued supporting him, Daschle gave the usual explanation of "not wanting to be a distraction etc etc."
With the support that Tom Daschle had as new head of the HHS, this resignation, along with the two others from Obama's cabinet, heralds a new day in Washington. I'm not sure it is the delinquent taxes so much as the facts that are being disclosed about the insider shenanigans in Washington and just how much $$$MONEY$$$ these "public servant" politicians can make after they leave office.
Poor Daschle (who would have been a good HHS chief) is feeling the effects of the light being shined on the last 4 years. He was on the payroll for a large law firm that represented Indian gaming, health care, support for ethanol and a number of other corporate interests that had business on the Hill. He also was a consultant and sold policy advice to many companies that had legislation pending in congress. He served as a director for Mayo Clinic and the clinic was able to forestall a $2.5 billion government loan that would have put a rail line next to the clinic in Rochester.
He was even paid for policy advise for United Healthcare,(One of the most egregious insurers we doctors universally dislike), who had multiple issues pending before the Department of Health and Human Services and who makes 20 billion from federal health programs alone.
Obama has a mandate from the American people to clean up Washington. Limos, corporate jets, million dollar consulting fees and retainers for insider access into policy matters has got to stop. I know it is not illegal but that doesn't mean it is right.
Just because "everyone does it" does not mean it should go on and finding cabinet members who fly above the radar, have personal ethics and don't use their position for influence and personal gain may be hard to fine.
Daschle would have been a good HHS chief because he understands health care reform and he does know how politics works. I wish he would have kept his nose clean. Also he wears cool glasses.
Nothing like experiencing a medical condition first-hand to really help a doctor understand it from the patient's point of view. After all these years, I had my first (and hopefully last) scintillating scotoma while sitting on the couch playing "words with friends" on my ipad and watching TV. A scotoma is a partial loss of vision in a normal visual field. Scintillate is flashing, sparkles. Put them together and you have moving, flashing sparkles with a blind spot in your eyes.
This visual aura was first described in the 19th century by a Dr. Hubert Airy who had migraine headaches. The visual sparks and flashes are in a zig-zag pattern and they can precede a migraine headache or occur without any pain. The scotoma affects both eyes and closing one or the other does not make it go away. Sometimes the term "ocular migraine" or "retinal migraine" are used to describe this phenomenon but these involve only one eye, not both. The terms are often …
Hey, I'm easing back into the blog world after a fun trip to NYC. If you are a Doctor or ever thought you'd enjoy the world of Medicine, take this quick quiz to see what specialty you are suited for.
I wish I would have had a quiz like this when I was deciding (oh so many years ago) on a specialty. Most medical students make important career decisions based on whether they had a good experience during a 4-6 week rotation. The Resident physician you serve under can make or break a rotation and, believe me, I've seen a lot of doctors that are not at all suited for the specialty they chose.
In case you are wondering, I scored highest on Orthopedic Surgery, Thoracic Surgery, OB/GYN, General Surgery and Urology. Interesting that they are all surgical specialties. Internal Medicine (my specialty) was number 25 for me. I guess it was all those questions that asked if I liked good outcomes and am decisive (yes and yes)!
I love learning something new in medicine and this was a new one for me...black spot poison ivy. Poison ivy (also known as rhus dermatitis) is a common contact allergic dermatitis. Like poison oak and poison sumac, the chemical that causes a reaction is called urushiol. When this plant sap touches the skin a pruritic (itchy) red rash appears with little blisters that are often in a line.
Black spot poison ivy is the same urushiol but in humid, warm conditions it is oxidized by lactase from the skin and turns into a dark black lacquer color. It is an uncommon presentation because usually the sap is diluted by perspiration and never turns black.
Poison ivy/oak is more common in the summer and I treat lots of cases in Northern California because it grows like a weed. The worst cases are when someone tries to burn the plant and inhales the resin. Treatment of black spot poison ivy is the same as regular poison ivy. Washing the skin, clothes, and all contacts area immediately is cri…