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Medical Guesswork

"The consequences for the U.S. are disturbing. This nation spends 2 1/2 times as much as any other country per person on health care. Yet middle-aged Americans are in far worse health than their British counterparts, who spend less than half as much and practice less intensive medicine, according to a new study. "The investment in health care in the U.S. is just not paying off," argues Gerard Anderson, director of the Center for Hospital Finance & Management at Johns Hopkins' Bloomberg School of Public Health. Speaking not for attribution, the head of health care at one of America's largest corporations puts it more bluntly: "There is a massive amount of spending on things that really don't help patients, and even put them at greater risk. Everyone that's informed on the topic knows it, but it is such a scary thing to discuss that people are not willing to talk about it openly."

John Carey, Business Week Article

The previous quote came from a long email that my chiropractor sent me. It's quite interesting. I've had my doubts about the traditional medical field for a long time: nearly every time I've had a "second opinion", I've gotten a completely different diagnosis. So who's right? It's hard to know. Suffice to say, I'm starting to just listen to my own body and follow my own instincts. It's harder when you've got a 2 year old that's hardly speaking and can't really tell you what's making him so cranky: it is the runny nose, a sore throat, chest tightness, sinus pressure? "Owwweee" and pointing is about all the feedback I get. He's been on antibiotics twice since he was born: once for an eye infection and once for apparent "ear" infection. The ear infection incident ended with us spending a lot of time inside keeping him out of the sun with what MIGHT have been an allergic reaction to the amoxicillan. Without full allergy testing, we won't know. Did I mention we were on a vacation in Hawaii? mmkay? mmkay. Suffice to say, my chiro mentioned that she had been able to head off all of her own daughters ear infections when she was a child. She's worked miracles on me at times when no one else could, though there have been times when her ministrations have been effective for a few hours (mainly for my most recent back troubles: my stomach & back muscles have gotten WEAK, mainly b/c I've been babying them since my L4 herniation.)

Kai's been adjusted by my chiropractor only once, but as for the current issues, I think we're going back: both of us. My eustachian tubes feel clogged: my throat is raw and feels like I've been pouring battery acid down it for 5 days. I've been taking up to 4 ibuprofen at a time to stem the pain so I can sleep, but lying down makes all my symptoms worse. So sleeping sucks... GRRR! I won't even mention the snoring that has been a bi-product of all this, and we won't talk about how the it annoys my ultra-light sleeping wife and wakes her up everytime I do it. Suffice to say, we're not sleeping in the same bed until I get healed.

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