Back pain is second only to cancer as a cause of long term disability. This health problem is damaging to individuals and costly to society. And we don't have much in our arsenal that is effective at treating it.
This week, we discuss the difference between acute and chronic back pain with regard to treatment and outcomes. We also discuss the role of surgery, medications, alternative therapies, and some interesting new research on what helps resolve chronic back pain.
Our understanding of what sleep is and why it is important grows daily. It's clear that poor sleep plays a role in all sorts of disease states. Sadly, more and more people report sleep disturbances to their doctors.
Is this a new epidemic we are facing, or is it just our awareness of the issue that makes it seem so?
In this episode, we take a look at the role sleep plays in our health, what happens when sleep is disturbed, and how insomnia can be treated. Take a listen and see what you think. We try not to put you to sleep, but you might want to grab a cup of coffee whiel you listen anyway.
Both of us, Kendall and Amy, have dogs named Goose. This was purely coincidental, and we are as surprised by that fact as anyone. It's a little uncanny how much they resemble one another, too. If you'd like to see the Geese, we've added their pictures over at 2DocsTalk.com. These two certainly live the life of Riley, but they aren't the only canines who have it so good.
We are a country of pet lovers. We spend over $60 billion annually on food, vet bills, toys, and silly extravagances for our animal companions. We love them, and can't imagine life without them. But did you know your pet can make you sick - and the other way around?
Today we discuss zoonotic infections - those infections that are spread from animal to human. Rabies, toxoplasmosis, and leptospirosis are a few diseases that fall into this category. We'll talk about how they are spread and treated, and give some tips on how to prevent the.
We'll also talk about how we can make our pets sick, too. It's a fun show!
Over the last couple of decades, the conversation surrounding hormone replacement therapy and menopause has been confusing. Does it work? Is it safe? What about alternative therapies? it's hard to sort out conflicting information coming from various sources. In this episode we discuss:
Because individuals with high cholesterol levels often develop heart disease, we've come to accept that high cholesterol - especially "bad" cholesterol, or LDL - causes heart disease.
But it can't be said often enough that correlation does not equal causation, and it is beginning to look more and more like a causal realtionship between cholesterol and heart disease just isn't there.
In this episode we talk about the status of treating cholesterol to prevent heart disease and about a drug trial that punctuates the whole process with a giant question mark.
Take a listen and see what you think.
For decades we've been told that our high fat diet is making us obese and killing us with heart disease. But here's the deal. The concept of a lowfat diet, exemplified in the Mediterranean Diet, is based on faulty science.
In this episode, we discuss how the high fat hypothesis became accepted science and public policy, without any good research to back it up. We also talk about the various kinds of fats that are out there and what we think is the biggest culprit in our obesity problems.
Stem cell research, regenerative medicine, or whatever you want to call it, was a real hot button issue for a while. The policitics around it have cooled somewhat, but controversy remains even if the media isn't reporting on it.
What have we learned from stem cell research, what advances have been made, and can we really trust it?
We get in to all this and more on this week's episode.
All you have to do is take a quick drive around town to see that low testosterone clinics are all the rage. A little math will tell you why. Males make up around 50 percent of the population, and their testosterone declines, naturally, at a rate of 1 percent per year after age 30. If that decline merits treatment, it's no wonder those clinics are everywhere.
But, does it merit treatment?
Is testosterone replacement safe?
Is it even effective?
We dig into those questions on this episode of 2 Docs Talk.
If you've paid any attention to the news in the last year you've heard about the trials of businesses such as Blue Bell Ice Cream and Chipotle. The outbreaks of food borne illnesses from these and other establishments have cause disease, death, and no small amount of economic hardship.
Why is it that these issues feel like they are happening more frequently? And more importantly, what can we do to keep ourselves healthy, if anything?
On this episode of 2 Docs Talk, we dig into the facts about food borne illness.
States that permit the sale of raw milk in retail stores include:
Arizona,California, Connecticut, Idaho, Maine, New Mexico, Nevada, Pennsylvania. South Carolina, Utah, Washington, New Hampshire
States that allow the sale of raw milk on the farm include:
Arkansas, Illinois, Kansas, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Nebraska, New York, Oklahoma, Rhode Island, Texas, Wisconsin, Mississippi
**Arkansas, Kentucky, Mississippi and Rhode Island restrict sales to goat milk, with Kentucky and Rhode Island requiring a prescription from a physician.
Five states allow for the sale of raw milk at farmers’ markets or through other avenues:
Colorado, South Dakota, Missouri, Vermont, Oregon
We referred to a couple of previous podcasts in this episode. If you haven't already listened to these, there is some good info in them:
One of the big scary pieces of growing old is the possiblity of developing Alzheimer Dementia. This progressive neurological disease is poorly understood, meaning the options for prevention and treatment have a long way to go.
In this episode, we talk about what the disease is, current options for treatment, the reality of prevention, and an approach to choosing long term care.
One of the foundational values of this show is emphasizing the importance of using the best available evidence when making decisions about medical care.
Unfortunately the drive to publish has driven some to game the scientific publishing system. From circumventing the peer-review process to outright fraud, scientific literature is plagued with misinformation.
The scientific community is responding, though. With tools like retraction databases, research reproducibility efforts and post-publication peer review, scientists are working to maintain the highest level of inegrity in the scientific literature.
Be sure to listen all the way to the end, we get a littel personal.
With Zika in the news, it seemed like a good time to examine the vector borne diseases making headway here in the U.S.
In addition to Zika, we need to pay attention to Dengue Fever. Like the West Nile virus and yellow fever, these viruses are spread by the Aedes mosquito - most often Aedes aegypti.
But don't think mosquitoes are the only issue. The Kissing Bug, which isn't nearly as sweet as it sounds, is responsible for the increasing burden of Chagas disease in the southern states. Without giving away their secret, let me just say you might not want to listen to this episode right before bedtime.
Note: This episode was recorded in mid-February. Our understanding of Zika, and its impact on the U.S. is rapidly evolving. Please keep an eye on the CDC pages linked below for the most current information.
This week we started talking about bugs and drugs, or infections and their treatments and we got into Clostridium difficile infection and fecal transplants. Because when it comes to this topic, we are all middle school boys. We can't not talk about it.
In all seriousness, C. diff can be a devastating disease and the success of this treatment is beyond exciting. As Kendall likes to remind us, though, we have to watch out for the law of unintended consequences.
After a few of our previous episodes we got some great questions from a few of our listeners. In this brief update, we answer questions about our episodes on medical marijuana, breast cancer screening and concussions.
Colorectal screening is an effective tool in the prevention of deaths from colon cancer. The question is if the screening tools we use now are the most effective and safe available to us. Technological advances are making less invasive, safer tests a possibility - and sooner rather than later if we're lucky.
But today, what tests do we have, which ones work, and what should you as a patient choose when it comes to your own screening.
We can use your help! Please pop on over to iTunes if you are an Apple user, or Stitcher for Android, and leave a rating and review for 2 Docs Talk. It will only take two minutes and you will have our undying gratitude!
The supplement industry is a big one - estimates place it anywhere from $12 billion to $37 billion.
However, if you put that number in the context of healthcare spending overall, it's not too crazy...if supplements are effective and safe.
But issues with the approval and regulations of dietary supplements make leave us with many unanswered questions about the so-called "natural" products on the market.
In this episode we examine supplements, homeopathic remedies, the placebo effect and much more. So take a listen, and leave a comment if you have thoughts on the topic.
Be sure and leave a comment if you have any thoughts on the show. And you know we'd appreciate it so much if you would leave us a review in iTunes!
The gluten-free phenomenon has grown into a $2.5 billion industry in the U.S. The question we have to ask is if the medical concern from gluten is enough to justify such a huge national expenditure. In this episode, we look at the disorders behind gluten and wheat allergies, gluten sensitivities and the science that supports these diagnoses.
Screening mammography is widely used throughout the U.S. and is thought of as a great success in the prevention of breast cancer deaths.
But what does the evidence say? Are we getting what we are paying for with mammography, or simply shouldering the extra cost of false positives and overdiagnosis? We examine these issues and more on this episode of 2 Docs Talk.
Concussions are not uncommon in contact sports such as football, soccer and basketball. But we aren't trying to scare or shock anyone. On today's podcast we'd like to educate and inform so that parents and players can make decisions that aren't based on fear and misinformation.
Take a listen and let us know what you think.
Article referenced in podcast:
As the the political winds shift in favor of legalizing medical marijuana, it's important to consider the evidence that supports it.
But the 23 states that have legalized it and the FDA don't agree on when marijuana helps and when it doesn't. In this episode, we take a look at the evidence supporting the move toward legalizing the use of marijuana and cannabinoids for medical purposes.
References from the show: