The "Starvation Doctor," Linda Burfield Hazzard, who wrote a book, "Fasting for the Cure of Disease," was convicted of manslaughter in 1912 for a patient's death by starvation. At least 15 deaths are attributed to her "care." While doing a fasting cure on herself in 1938 she died of starvation. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lin…
Many doctors have stopped calling cancer treatment a "fight" or "battle". They argue these terms misrepresent how treatment works and if treatments fail, the patient is left with guilt and a false belief they didn't "fight" hard enough. blogs.scientificamerican.…
A county in Oregon advertised that it was hiring Klingon translators for its mental health program, in case patients came into a psychiatric hospital speaking nothing but Klingon. They later clarified that this wasn't a situation they had faced, and only a precaution for a hypothetical case en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kli…
One of the first methods of recognizing diabetes in patients was through urine taste test, as ants were attracted to certain peoples' urine. In 1674, an English doctor named Thomas Willis described diabetic urine as β€œwonderfully sweet as if it were imbued with honey or sugar.'' sekisuidiagnostics.com/bl…
The 1st doctor to discover that doctors should wash their hands before performing surgery was ridiculed for suggesting that doctors were causing their own patients harm. He was ostracized and exiled from the medical community until his death. youtu.be/_VZrY2vSbws?t=24…
Adam Sandler's movie "50 First Dates" inspired a real therapy program in which patients with early dementia watch every morning a video message of support from their loved ones. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/50_…
Today I learned about Oscar, a nursing home cat in Rhode Island who appears able to predict the impending death of terminally ill patientsβ€”by choosing to nap next to people a few hours before they die. Oscar has been mentioned in The New England Journal of Medicine and so far has predicted at least 100 deaths. catster.com/lifestyle/osc…
Today I learned scientists have been able to track the history of the AIDS virus. Through research they believe 'patient zero' lived Cameroon in Africa, and contracted the disease around 1908, after hunting a chimp and being infected with SIV (Simian Immunodeficiency Virus) wnycstudios.org/podcasts/…
Dr. Bagenholm fell face first into a frozen river while skiing and got stuck. Doctors revived her from being clinically dead which led to the development of therapeutic hypothermia, which has increased survival rates and brain function in many heart surgery, epileptic, and stroke patients. theguardian.com/science/b…
Cancer patients who opt for alternative therapy die at twice the rate of those who stick with conventional cancer therapy. jamanetwork.com/journals/…
The term "Patient Zero" was actually β€œPatient O” as in the letter O, meaning that the person was from β€œoutside” California. The ambiguous circular symbol on a chart was later read as a zero and the term became widely used. thecut.com/2016/10/hivs-p…
Paul Revere was one of America's first orthodontists, and used walrus teeth as dental implants. The walrus teeth were later helpful for identifying the corpses of his patients that were killed in the Revolutionary war. massar.org/2016/10/30/pau…
Today I learned of Sir Ewan Forbes, an intersex British aristocrat and rural doctor who applied to change his sex in 1952. Afraid of possible ostracism, he alerted his patients, priest and friends in advance and found that they were β€œuniversally supportive”. He married his partner in a church a month later. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sir…
Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT), still utilized today, allows for improvements in depression in 70-90% of the patients treated with it, much higher than that of psychopharmacology. hopkinsmedicine.org/psych…
Last year, researchers from the University of British Columbia figured out how to convert blood type A into the universal Type O, which all patients can receive in a transfusion, regardless of their own blood type. This could broaden the supply of blood and ease shortages. sciencemag.org/news/2019/…
Danny Trejo got his first acting job when visiting a patient he was doing substance abuse counseling for on the set of "Runaway Train". He was offered a job as an extra in the film's prison scenes. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dan…
A U of Quebec study of 320,000 patients with a history of alcoholism found that patients with high cannabis use had a better defense against liver disease than non-users. Non-pot users had a 90% chance of liver disease; light pot users had an 8% chance; heavy pot users had a 1.3% chance. vice.com/en_au/article/ne…
Today I learned of patient AB - "the first and only instance in which hallucinatory voices sought to reassure the patient, offered her a specific diagnosis, directed her to the hospital, expressed pleasure that she was well again, bid her farewell, and thereafter disappeared." researchgate.net/publicat…
Today I learned about Lesch-Nyhan Syndrome, an inborn error of metabolism who's clinical hallmark is self-mutilation. The behavior begins after teething, as infants bite off their lower lip/perioral tissue. Later in life, affected patients are known to stab themselves and amputate fingers, toes, and tongue. ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/arti…
During China’s Ming Dynasty, powdered smallpox scabs were blown up the noses of the healthy. The patients would then develop a mild case of the disease, & from then on were immune to it. Although the technique had a 0.5–2.0% mortality rate, it was better than the diseases 20–30% mortality rate. wikipedia.org/wiki/Smallp…
In the 1940s and 50s, the Quebec government deliberately misdiagnosed 20,000 orphans with mental illnesses as they would get larger federal subsidies for psychiatric patients than for orphans. The orphans were confined to psychiatric institutions, many being abused and lobotomised. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dup…
The story "the vibrator was invented by doctors for giving female patients orgasms to treat hysteria" was a myth. bbc.com/future/article/20…
Rene Favaloro, a Pioneering Surgeon, in 1967 took a section of vein from the patient’s leg and sewed one end to his aorta, Performing the first documented coronary bypass operation, used until today in the whole world. academic.oup.com/eurheart…
Ketchup was first sold as medicine. In 1834 Dr. John Cooke Bennet invented the idea to add tomatoes to ketchup (a fish or mushroom mix at the time). He believed that adding tomatoes added the vitamins and antioxidants needed to cure indigestion, later prescribing tomato pills to patients. kelownacapnews.com/trendi…
Robert Liston (1794-1847), a pioneering Scottish surgeon known for his speed when operating - he could remove a limb in two and a half minutes - once accidentally cut off his patient's testicles in an overly enthusiastic amputation. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rob…
Ancient Mesopotamians had written accounts of solider PTSD dating to the Assyrian dynasty (1300-609 BC). They believed the disorder was caused by the spirits of enemies whom the patient had killed during battle researchgate.net/publicat…
A 'cancer patient' underwent surgery to remove a lump in his lungs. It turned out to be caused by a toy traffic cone he inhaled 40 years ago. He did not have cancer after all. theguardian.com/uk-news/2…
Syphilis used to be treated by infecting people with malaria to induce a fever. While about 15% of patients died from malaria, this was preferable to the almost-certain death from syphilis en.wikipedia.org/wiki/His…
A patient who was resuscitated in the Van Lommel study of NDE reported experiences more consistent with real and verifiable events, rather than hallucination, indicating some kind of state of consciousness pre-resuscitation. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nea…
Today I learned of Joy Milne, a β€œsuper-smeller” who found she could smell a unique odor on people with Parkinson's disease years before the onset of symptoms. Scientists then isolated biomarkers in sebum (oily substance from face/back) of Parkinson’s patients, paving the way to earlier detection/treatment. discovermagazine.com/heal…
Before MRI scans were widespread, doctors used an extremely painful X-ray to look at the brain where the CSF was drained and replaced with air. They would strap patients into a rotating chair to angle them upside down so that the fluid would be fully replaced in different parts of the brain. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pne…
Up until as recently as the 1950’s, candy stripers sold cigarettes to hospital patients in bed statnews.com/2016/10/21/c…
In 1921, Evan O'Neill Kane was the first doctor to remove his own appendix to test if local anesthetic would be sufficient pain killer for patients. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eva…
Today I learned about "Verbocaine": Talking to a patient throughout a non-anesthetized procedure and providing reassurance and feedback, which can mitigate pain response healthline.com/health/bir…
Today I learned about Elizabeth McWilliams, a nurse's aid who took care of influenza patients in 1918. She worked tirelessly for patients before contracting the illness herself and dying. Her last words were "I am happy because I've tried to be a real American." loc.gov/pictures/item/201…
That, even after injecting yourself with epinephrine or receiving it from an ambulance in response to an anaphylactic attack, it's still advisable to visit the ER. 20% of the time, patients may need a second injection or other interventions because the first (for whatever reason) has failed. youtube.com/watch?v=ghGNT…
The Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder symptoms made popular by "Monk" (fear of germs, cleaning, repetitive actions, etc) is half or the "Compulsive" side of the disorder. The other side or "Obsessive" side have patients that struggle with unwanted sexual or violent thoughts they can't control. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Obs…
Donald Harvey, a nurse who killed 37 of his patients, was only caught because a medical examiner who performed the autopsy on one of his victims had the genetic ability to smell cyanide. This prompted an investigation and Harvey was discovered. usatoday.com/story/news/h…
Today I learned of Ruth Coker Burks. During the AIDS epidemic in the late 1980s, she used her salary as a real estate agent to provide support, medication and palliative care for more than 1000 AIDS patients whose families had abandoned them, and for some, burying them in her own family cemetery in Arkansas. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rut…
A nurse named Niels HΓΆgel is one of the most prolific medical serial killers of all time (85 confirmed, 300+ suspected). He administered lethal doses of heart meds to patients so he could try to revive them in front of colleagues for attention and praise. yourlawyer.com/library/pr…
Today I learned about Patient TN, who suffered two strokes permanently damaging his brain’s visual lobes. Despite being consciously blind, TN was able to navigate through a cluttered obstacle course perfectly, as his subconscious vision, aka β€œblindsight”, was still intact. blogs.scientificamerican.…
Robotic assisted surgeries have been done for more than 10 years. The Dr sits at a station in the operating room with a 3-D display and uses joystick-like controls to manipulate robotic arms, but does not physically touch the patient to perform the surgery. my.clevelandclinic.org/he…
Paramedics are trained not to run to patients, as walking keeps them calmer on arrival and more likely to take in the situation. ems1.com/ems-education/ar…
Today I learned about Cardiopulmonary Bypass, a technique in which a machine temporarily takes over the function of the heart and lungs during surgery, maintaining the circulation of blood and the oxygen content of the patient's body. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Car…
Today I learned of Stubbins Ffirth who attempted to prove that Yellow Fever wasn't contagious by smearing vomit, blood, saliva, and urine from patients in open wounds on his arms. While he never got sick, it later emerged that the samples he used had come from late-stage patients who were no longer contagious en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stu…
Today I learned of Harold Shipman, an English GP who is believed to be the most prolific serial killer in history. In 2000, a jury found Shipman guilty of the murder of 15 patients under his care, with his total number of victims estimated to be around 250. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Har…
A diospyrobezoar is a hard mass that forms in the digestive tract due to ingesting persimmons. Korean physicians have successfully treated this condition by giving the patient diet soda ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/arti…
The novel "The English Patient" by Michael Ondaatje won the Booker Prize in 1992, and then won the Golden Booker Award (a special one-off prize awarded in commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the Booker Prize) 26 years later, in 2018. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The…
In the early days of penicillin, it was common to collect urine from patients who had consumed the drug, in order to isolate the substance for reuse, as the drug was scarce and highly valued. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pen…
In 1857 Charles Lockock, believing there to be a cause-effect relationship between masturbation and seizures, began to treat his patients with potassium bromide which was known to reduce sex drive. In doing so, he serendipitously discovered what would become the first drug therapy for epilepsy. ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/arti…
The term 'patient 0' is based on a misunderstanding. One of the earliest recorded HIV patients was named 'patient O', standing for 'patient OUT of California'. Readers and journalists then misinterpreted this letter as the numeral 0, leading to its wide usage today. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ind…
Bottle caps are used to stop life-threatening bleeds for dialysis patients kidneycareuk.org/about-ki…
Having shot a man in the head, Andrew Lyons's lawyer argued for manslaughter. The victim died when a surgeon transplanted the heart from the brain-dead victim: Andrew's bullet wasn't fatal. Following the case California issued a law allowing surgeons to transplant organs from brain-dead patients med.stanford.edu/news/all…
Today I learned about Dr. Farid Fata, an oncologist who falsely diagnosed 500+ patients with cancer they never had, subjected them to unnecessary treatments, including chemo, and then fraudulently billed over $30 million to their insurance. He was sentenced to 45 years in prison after pleading guilty in 2014. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Far…
In his early phases of Alzheimer's in 1995, 84 year old Ronald Reagan still received visitors at his office and worked out daily with his personal trainer. Routine is important to Alzheimer’s patients, and on good days Reagan's routine was the the same as it had been since leaving office people.com/archive/cover-…
Scientists have improved upon CAR-T: a living drug made by genetically engineering a patient's T-cells kill cancer cells. They found a new type of T-cell that could attack a wider range of cancers than the existing CAR-T. This raises the prospect of a 'one-size-fits-all' cancer treatment. bbc.com/news/health-51182…
Today I learned of "Daughter from California syndrome", a phrase used in the medical profession to describe situation in which a long-absent family member arrives while a patient is dying to demand inappropriately aggressive care. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dau…
Physicians in the middle ages would drink their patients urine to diagnose medical conditions. They were able to accurately diagnose diabetes because the urine tasted sweet. sekisuidiagnostics.com/bl…
A man complained of symptoms and admitted to taking VitD supplement purported to contain 1600 IU. Analysis revealed that each capsule contained a significantly higher amount (186,400 IU). An error in labeling made the patient consume 10 capsules p/d thus consuming 1,864,000 IU daily for 2 months academic.oup.com/jcem/art…
There is a genetic form of insomnia called Fatal Familial Insomnia which results in the inability to sleep, hallucinations, and eventual death of the patient with a few years. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fat…
A German nurse was sentenced to life in prison without eligibility for parole after he murdered more than 85 patients because he wanted to show off his resuscitation skills and be the hero who saves them on the hospital bed en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nie…
A bezoar is a round, solid mass of indigestible material such as calcium and magnesium phosphate that accumulates in your digestive tract. A 2013 review presented 46 patients treated with Coca-Cola for bezoars. A total of 91.3% of patients had complete resolution after treatment with Coca-Cola. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bez…
In 2013, Australian blogger Belle Gibson claimed to have beaten brain cancer using 'natural remedies' β€” selling a cookbook to cancer patients with all her 'secrets'. It was later revealed she never even had cancer, and was fined $410,000 by the Australian government for her deceptive practices. abc.net.au/news/2017-09-2…
Today I learned about Dr. Chester Southam who injected live cancer cells into people with questionable ability to consent, including senile patients under long-term care. He was charged with unprofessional conduct and later went on to become President of the American Association for Cancer Research en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Che…
A 2014 study found that you could increase the survival rate of a patient suffering with ARDS by 26% (The condition responsible for killing patients with Coronavirus) by simply having them lay on their stomach for 16-18hr a day while on ventilation. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Acu…
Today I learned about Margaret Schilling a mental patient who went missing in December 1978. Jan '79 local news reporting her escaped. 5 weeks later, worker finds her body locked alone in a construction area. Her decomp left a stain in the marble of her death pose that endures to today. lightforcenetwork.com/oli…
In film editing, that in 1994 only 3 feature films had ever been edited digitally. By 1995 none had ever won an Oscar for best editing. In 1996 "The English Patient" was the first (edited by Walter Murch on the Avid). Since then every Oscar winner has been.except 1998's "Saving Private Ryan". premiumbeat.com/blog/fun-…
In rare cases, traumatic brain injuries can cause FAS, or foreign-accent syndrome. This results in a patient's native speech taking on entirely new tone, or accent. theatlantic.com/health/ar…
Today I learned about 'holy anorexia' - Medieval Catholic saints "refused food, but drank the pus from the sores of the sick. Angela of Foligno is reported to have said it was as "sweet as the Eucharist", and also to have eaten the scabs and lice from those same patients" en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ano…
The KΓΌbler-Ross "Five Stages of Grief" model originated from her work with terminally ill patients grieving their own deaths psycom.net/depression.cen…
Before antibiotics, patients with Tuberculosis were sent to Colorado Springs as it was believed dry air and sunshine helped in the treatment. TB sanatoriums, or small hut-like structures with ventilation, still litter backyards and properties around the city. atlasobscura.com/places/t…
Canadian researchers developed an implant which restores the movement of patients with advanced Parkinson's disease who have trouble walking, freezing on the spot and falling. By electrical stimulation to the spine via the implant, the signal reawakens the feedback from legs to brain. bbc.com/news/health-47803…
In the US from 2014-2018, an average of 19,700 patients per year went to emergency rooms because of injuries involving grills. There’s an annual average of 8,900 home fires involving grills, hibachis or barbecues. nfpa.org/grilling
The diagnostic criteria for sexual disorders were tested on only three patients before being added to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, in 1980. No field trials were ever conducted. newyorker.com/magazine/20…
Cross circulation where a second human (usually they patient's father) was used as a heart bypass 'machine' was used for the first surgeries to fix congenital heart defects in children. jtcvs.org/article/S0022-5…
The term apophenia is the perception of connections and meaningfulness in unrelated things. Apophenia can be a normal phenomenon or an abnormal one, as in paranoid schizophrenia when the patient sees ominous patterns where there are none. slate.com/technology/2014…
That, until 1791, the Bethlem Royal Hospital, or Bedlam, welcomed paying visitors who watched the patients and sometimes taunted them with sticks or otherwise abused them en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bet…
UK surgeon Simon Bramhall marked his initials with an argon beam on the livers of two of his patients. A colleague saw β€œSB” on a liver during a follow-up surgery. The marks aren't believed to be harmful to the liver but Bramhall pleaded guilty to assault. theguardian.com/uk-news/2…
Today I learned of a woman known as Patient S.M, who has no amygdala, which is the part of the brain responsible for fear. As a result she is unable to feel fear or read negative social cues, and doesn't understand personal space. The only time she ever felt fear is when a test was held replicating suffocation. ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/arti…
While GaΓ«tan Dugas was widely regarded as 'Patient Zero' of HIV, 16 year old Robert Rayford was admitted to a hospital in St. Louis in 1969, and died from pneumonia. Some of his tissue was preserved, and later tested positive for AIDS. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rob…
Japanese researchers transplanted lab-grown heart muscle cells onto a human patient's damaged heart as a successful alternative to whole heart transplant. They turned adult stem cells into heart muscle cells, placed the cells on degradable sheets, & covered the damaged parts of the heart. lehren.com/news/tech/arti…
HIV is reported cured in two patients both of whom benefited from bone marrow transplant procedures that were actually intended for treating cancer, not HIV nytimes.com/2019/03/04/he…
In 2013, a head injury left an Australian woman with a French accent. This is a case of foreign accent syndrome, which is a medical condition in which patients acquire a foreign accent through a stroke or head trauma. telegraph.co.uk/news/worl…
A positive THC screen is associated with significantly decreased mortality in adult patients sustaining TBI (traumatic brain injury). ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/2…
There is a program in Indianapolis, Indiana called No One Dies Alone (NODA) where volunteers will stay beside a dying patient who has no one to visit them. eskenazihealth.edu/progra…
As a way to legitimize their rule, medieval kings of England and France would touch people infected with Scrofula, a disease which causes swelling around the neck, expecting the royal touch to miraculously cure the patients. Henry IV of France touched 1,250 patients in one day en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roy…
Ventilators used to be respirators that holds a patient in an air-tight horizontal chamber with patient’s head out, pumping negative pressure to help the patient breathe back in 1930-1950s due to the polio epidemic bymyhealth.com/the-earlie…
"celebrity psychiatrist" Dr. Isaac Herschkopf manipulated a patient into cutting off his family, giving him his home, signing over his bank account, and amending his will to leave everything to the doctor's wife. Yet Dr. Herschkopf still maintains his medical license in New York City today. nypost.com/2019/06/08/how…
Doctor Min Chiu Li was fired from the NIH in the 1950s because he gave chemotherapy to patients even after their tumors appeared to be gone. After firing him, the NIH discovered the long-term survival rates for his patients were far superior to conventional treatments. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Min…
Camel milk is safe and efficacious in improving long-term glycemic control, with a significant reduction in the doses of insulin in type 1 diabetic patients. nature.com/articles/ejcn2…
1 in 5000 Americans experience sudden deafness syndrome, when a patient experiences a sudden pop and hearing is gone in an instant. dana.org/article/reversin…
The only 2 patients to be cured of HIV were also undergoing cancer treatment at the same time; meaning they became cancer free AND HIV negative at the same time en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ber…
Today I learned about a procedure called ”tooth in eye surgery”, where the patient’s tooth is removed, a tiny lens is inserted into it, and the tooth is the put inside the patient’s eye. It’s only used for rare cases of corneal blindness and only a few operations take place each year. rnib.org.uk/nb-online/too…
Group of doctors in the US were developing a technique to buy time in treating lethal wounds by inducing the person into a state of hibernation. The procedure included replacing part of the patients blood with chilled saline solution. bizjournals.com/pittsburg…
A study of prayer for cardiac bypass patients found that prayer had no effect on recovery and that patients who knew they were being prayed for actually had more complications ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/1…
Nellie Bly the journalist that went undercover as a patient in an insane asylum in order to expose abuses there in 1887, went the following year, trying another assignment saw her turn the novel Around the World in Eighty Days into reality when she traveled around the globe herself. smithsonianmag.com/smart-…
Mary Jane Rathbun, better known as Brownie Mary became known for illegally baking and distributing cannabis brownies to AIDs patients in the 1980s. She was baking more than 4000 brownies per week. She was also known for wearing polyester pants suits and having a 'sailors mouth'. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bro…
Whilst investigating the spread of HIV in Los Angeles and San Francisco, researchers used the letter 'O' to refer a case of someone "outside the state of California". The letter O, however, was interpreted by some readers as the numeral 0. The designation ''Patient Zero'' was born. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ind…
The patient in the National Geographic best picture of 1987 depicting the famous 23hrs heart transplantation which shows the Doctor monitoring his vitals while the assistant rests in the corner not only survived but outlived the doctor. zmescience.com/other/grea…
Suicide prevention contracts were widely used by clinicians dealing with depressive patients asking them to sign contracts stating that they will either not act on or reach out for help when experiencing suicidal urges. They're now considered ineffective and may even increase risk. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sui…

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