Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Why I am So Over Dr. Oz

The newest media Doc on the block is Dr. Mehmet Oz. When he was first seen on Oprah, he seemed engaging and answered some interesting questions in a real and professional way. The audience loved his blue scrubs and boyish clean cut open style.

That was then.

Let's face it...the media spotlight seems to corrupt even the best physicians. Dr. Oz now has his own show and website and production company. That is a pretty big infrastructure to maintain and we know that the public is fickle. So what does he do?

His "Real-Age" website got 27 million people to sign up and take a health quiz. That information was sold to pharmaceutical companies who used the direct emails for marketing. Real-Age also sends the participants a series of emails about conditions they may (or may not) have and drugs they can use to treat it, based on their answers to the on-line health quiz, sponsored by drug companies of course.

He does pieces on "men's health" and tells men to do male breast checks once a month. No research I have read would support this advice. On his website he says "By the time women reach their 20th birthday, they are at risk for developing osteoporosis". Really? An upcoming show asks "Can you climax from intercourse?" Gee, is this a health question that needs an answer by an expert?

With his busy production schedule, book tour and daily talk show on Sirius XM radio, can Dr. Oz be spending much time as the director of the Cardiovascular Institute and Complementary Medicine Program at New York Presbyterian Hospital? Do you think I could get an appointment with him?

His website shows how I can be on the show. Maybe that is how patients get their questions answered. I know I could get tickets for the show and find out if I am"Getting old too fast" (Yes!) or "Do your parents need to lose weight". (No!)

His website deals with topics like "What his erection is telling you" and "Dangerous health secrets men keep". Could what his erection is telling you be a dangerous health secret?

Enough Dr. Oz. Please stop embarrassing our profession. See a patient with atrial fibrillation and do something important with your skills.

Dr. Oz, why the goofy business shoes with scrubs?


tracy said...

Yep, sad. i used to be a big fan. (Surprise!). And the scrubs without undershirt look-ick!

That's okay, i'm a "groupie" of a couple of other doctors! :)

Healthnut said...

NY Times did an article about how his website was sponsored by the big pharma.

He was also the one who hyped up the acai berry craze which lead many dieters into the "acai berry scam". Though he had no part in the scam, he did tout about the high antioxidants of these berries. In reality acai berries DO NOT contain any more antioxidants than pomegranates, black berries, and a few other fruits.

"Guppy" Honaker said...

I agree about the concerns with the techniques used by the Dr. Oz machine. Still, I think he yet provides useful information to countless numbers of people (primarily women, with important information for female-centered health issues). So, while I agree with you, I'll not discount him quite yet.

Keep up the good work on you blog. - David

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Michael Kirsch, M.D. said...

Great effort on pulling back the curtain on the 'Wizard of Oz'!

Jim Purdy said...

"His "Real-Age" website got 27 million people to sign up and take a health quiz. That information was sold to pharmaceutical companies who used the direct emails for marketing."

Is THAT why I'm getting so much pharma junk email? Shame on you, Doctor Oz!

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burtland said...

plus, he's creepy!

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Anonymous said...

Dr Oz, keep up the good work. It's easy to blame others when they are willing to do what others aren't and getting to a place where others desire but aren't willing to do the work. The information you're sharing is information you can't get and WILL NOT get from your regular physician. It's up to each individual to take the information that you're sharing and do their own due diligence. I take the information from your show and I dig for scientific studies, facts, case studies, etc...but it has helped me personally and I thank Yahweh for giving us the opportunity to get completely off of pharmacueticals simply by sending us on a seek for TRUTH. So if "Big Pharma" is paying you to share this information, good for them because they now have a few less customers who've taken this information to get free from them. THANKS!!!

Anonymous said...

Mostly upsetting was his recent show on liposuction. {July 2011}... Thought he could have spoken about healthier alternatives to getting rid of unwanted fat. Why prop up surgeons? Aren't there alternative ways such as eating raw and boiled daikon?! We need a holistic doctor to lead America not a traditional doctor leading everyone astray.

andres roy said...

Hi Toni,
I loved reading this piece! Well written!

Andress Rao
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