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Yearly Archives: 2012


How a drug went from $50 to $28,000 a vial

By |December 30, 2012|Health Care|

Source NY Times

The doctor was dumbfounded: a drug that used to cost $50 was now selling for $28,000 for a 5-milliliter vial.

The physician, Dr. Ladislas Lazaro IV, remembered occasionally prescribing this anti-inflammatory, named H.P. Acthar Gel, for gout back in the early 1990s. Then the drug seemed to fade from view. Dr. Lazaro had all but forgotten about it, until a sales representative from a company called Questcor Pharmaceuticals appeared at his office and suggested that he try it for various rheumatologic conditions.

“I’ve never seen anything like this,” Dr. Lazaro, a rheumatologist in Lafayette, La., says of the price increase.

How the price of this drug rose so far, so fast is a story for these troubled times in American health care — a tale of aggressive marketing, questionable medicine and, not least, out-of-control costs. At the center of it is Questcor, which turned the once-obscure Acthar into a hugely profitable wonder drug and itself into one of Wall Street’s highest fliers. (more…)

Could High Insulin Make You Fat? Mouse Study Says Yes

By |December 30, 2012|Nutrition|

Source Science Daily

Animals with persistently lower insulin stay trim even as they indulge themselves on a high-fat, all-you-can-eat buffet.

When we eat too much, obesity may develop as a result of chronically high insulin levels, not the other way around. That’s according to new evidence in mice reported in the December 4th Cell Metabolism, a Cell Press publication, which challenges the widespread view that rising insulin is a secondary consequence of obesity and insulin resistance.

The new study helps to solve this chicken-or-the-egg dilemma by showing that animals with persistently lower insulin stay trim even as they indulge themselves on a high-fat, all-you-can-eat buffet. The findings come as some of the first direct evidence in mammals that circulating insulin itself drives obesity, the researchers say.

The results are also consistent with clinical studies showing that long-term insulin use by people with diabetes tends to come with weight gain, says James Johnson of the University of British Columbia.

“We are very inclined to think of insulin as either good or bad, but it’s neither,” Johnson said. “This doesn’t mean anyone should stop taking insulin; there are nuances and ranges at which insulin levels are optimal.” (more…)

Too Sweet to Be Good? The Potential Health Hazards of Artificial Sweeteners

By |December 27, 2012|Artificial Sweeteners, Attention Deficit, Chemical Sensitivity, Environmental Sensitivity, Food Sensitivity, Headache, Obesity, Pediatrics|

Too Sweet to Be Good?
The Potential Health Hazards of Artificial Sweeteners

The Chiro.Org Blog

SOURCE:   Dynamic Chiropractic

By Claudia Anrig, DC

With worldwide obesity rates doubling in the past three decades, is it any surprise that artificial sweeteners have been gaining popularity? Beginning with the creation of saccharin, “sugar substitutes” have become the supposed answer to a dieter’s prayer – and part of the daily diet of many of our children.

Let’s review the various sugar substitutes on the market today to appreciate what they are and why they may not be the best option in terms of your patients’ – and your – health.

Aspartame: NutraSweet or Equal

This sugar substitute was discovered in 1965 by accident while chemist James Schlatter was testing an anti-ulcer drug. [1] Aspartame gained FDA approval in 1981 and was approved in 1983 for use in carbonated beverages, where it is most commonly found now as the primary sweetener for most diet sodas. [2]

Aspartame accounts for over 75 percent of the adverse reactions to food additives reported to the FDA and has been linked to serious medical reactions. [3, 4] Researchers and physicians studying these reactions have concluded that the following chronic illnesses can worsen when ingesting aspartame: brain tumors, multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, chronic fatigue syndrome, Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s, mental retardation, lymphoma, birth defects, fibromyalgia, and diabetes. [4] (more…)

Best and worst jobs for people in pain

By |December 23, 2012|General Health|


Going to work when you have a chronic pain-causing condition can be difficult or even downright impossible, depending on the job. Studies have shown that people with rheumatoid arthritis are more likely to change jobs, reduce their hours, be fired, and retire early than people without the condition.

If you have chronic pain and are in the workforce, you should try to find an occupation that isn’t too physically demanding and allows you to work at your own pace.

Best: Administrative assistant
Sitting at a desk all day is not ideal for someone with painful joints. Working as an administrative assistant, however, could have its benefits. You may not have to perform a lot of repetitive movements, unless it’s typing. Also, this position probably comes with some flexibility—it’s important to be able to move around when you need to and take breaks as necessary.

A 2012 study out of the University of Georgia found that administrative assistants and office staff in general had the fewest reported injuries of the occupations studied.

Worst: Landscaping
If you have a green thumb, it’s wise to limit your talents to your own yard. Landscaping tasks like pruning that involve frequent use of hand tools can cause pain in the small joints.

Landscaping also requires a lot of bending, stooping over, and kneeling, which can cause pain in joints, particularly the knees. Finally, it also involves lifting and hauling, sometimes in wheelbarrows, which can cause back pain. (more…)

Choice: It Really Does Matter!

By |December 19, 2012|Chiropractic Care, Spinal Manipulation, Unnecessary Surgery|

Choice: It Really Does Matter!

The Chiro.Org Blog

SOURCE:   Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2012 Dec 12. [Epub ahead of print]

Keeney, Benjamin J. PhD; Fulton-Kehoe, Deborah PhD, MPH; Turner, Judith A. PhD; Wickizer, Thomas M. PhD; Chan, Kwun Chuen Gary PhD; Franklin, Gary M. MD, MPH

Department of Orthopaedics, Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth College, Lebanon, NH 03756, USA.

This review, by scientists at the Department of Orthopaedics at the Geisel School of Medicine, clearly suggests that the first doctor you choose to see will have a profound effect on whether you end up having spinal surgery.

Just look at these stats:

42.7% of workers who first saw a surgeon ended in surgery, as opposed to only

1.5% of those who (first) saw a chiropractor.

The authors conclude: “There was a very strong association between surgery and first provider seen for the injury, even after adjustment for other important variables.

The Abstract:

Study Design   Prospective population-based cohort study

Objective   To identify early predictors of lumbar spine surgery within 3 years after occupational back injury (more…)

New Oregon LBP Guidelines: Try Chiropractic First

By |December 17, 2012|Chiropractic Care, Guidelines, Low Back Pain|

New Oregon LBP Guidelines: Try Chiropractic First

The Chiro.Org Blog

SOURCE: Dynamic Chiropractic


Lobbyist, Oregon Chiropractic Association

The new State of Oregon Evidence-Based Clinical Guidelines for the Evaluation and Management of Low Back Pain recommends spinal manipulation as the only nonpharmacological treatment for acute lower back pain. The guidelines, which have been adopted by the Oregon Health Authority, are a collaborative effort between the Center for Evidence-Based Practice, Oregon Corporation for Health Care Quality, Oregon Health and Sciences University’s Center for Evidence-based Policy, and the new Oregon Health Evidence Review Commission.

The Oregon Chiropractic Association (OCA) repeatedly gave written and oral testimony that the original draft guidelines placed too much emphasis on drugs and surgery. A close review of the original algorithm, “Management of Low Back Pain (LBP) (Image 2), relative to “#23 Signs or symptoms of radiculopathy or spinal stenosis,” reveals this. For example, if subsequent special imaging (MRI) revealed concordant nerve root impingement or spinal stenosis (#25), the original draft algorithm led the clinician into a surgical or other invasive procedure “dead end,” meaning there was no contingency for conservative chiropractic treatment (#26).

Image 2 (above)
—> Is Now Discontinued