Tuesday, January 15, 2008

A Short History of Medicine

I have an earache:
2000 BC Here, eat this root.
1000 AD That root is heathen. Here, say this prayer.
1850 AD That prayer is superstition. Here, drink this potion.
1940 AD That potion is snake oil. Here, swallow this pill.
1985 AD That pill is carcinogenic. Here, take this antibiotic.
2000 AD That antibiotic ruins your immunity. Here, eat this root.


At 8:57 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

love that! did you hear about the latest book, "Head Case" by Dennis Cass? Here is a man who willingly subjects himself to experiments...like there isn't enough people to study already? ~ Denise

about the book:

Infiltrating the world of neuroscience, Dennis Cass offers up his own brain to "research," subjecting his mind and body to electric shocks, mind-numbing attention experiments, cigarettes, stress tests of his own devising, and the comedy of Bill Maher. Like a slightly off-kilter George Plimpton, Cass, in his daring exploits, reveals the intricacies of fear, attention, stress, reward, and consciousness from the inside out. Along the way, he weaves in the story of his stepfather's manic depression and drug addiction, in addition to his own problems—which are many. Cass attacks the subject of the human brain with wit and candor, turning popular science into something distinctly human. Head Case is an imperative read for anyone who has ever wondered, Why am I who I am?


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