I Must Start Somewhere

Why is it so difficult to locate correct information in regard to medical topics?

Welcome to our new blog. There's so much to discuss and reveal, but so difficult to know exactly where to start. Some of you may have already read my book, "Dangerous Medicine What Your Doctor Doesn't Know Can Hurt You." If so, you are ahead of those who haven't read it because, in the book, I tried to explain why medicine is chocked full of myths and rumors. Those myths and rumors can lead to dire consequences because they can lead to mistakes in decision making and adversely affect patients when the wrong decision is made. I have alluded to this scenario for many years, but it's hard to change the status quo. There is a term used in medicine called, the standard of care. the standard of care involves diagnostic and treatment methods based upon information that is assumed to be correct. What happens when the information is not correct? The answer is very simple. It follows that diagnoses and treatment methods might be incorrect as well. As an example, the cholesterol myth has been perpetrated and perpetuated for years. It's the myth that has convinced many doctors to prescribe cholesterol lowering drugs (statins) to reduce cholesterol levels. It's a perfect example of treating a condition that doesn't need treatment in the vast majority of cases. Also, the cholesterol lowering drugs(statins) have a range of side effects, some of which are very serious. It is a myth that higher levels of cholesterol cause clogging of the arteries. Instead, there are other more important factors that lead to the development of heart disease related to clogged arteries. As an example, medical science has confirmed that men with lower levels of testosterone are more prone to develop problems due to clogged arteries compared to those who have higher levels. Clogged artierires predispose these same individuals to heart attack and stroke. This is contrary to what is still being taught in medical school to doctors in training. Another important factor is inflammation and of course, there are heredity considerations. There is no convincing evidence that taking statins reduces the risk of heart attack or stroke even though the companies that manufacture the drugs spend millions on TV to convince you otherwise. Don't make the mistake of asking your family doctor about this because he/she was given the same misinformation during his or her training. What I have just mentioned is only one of many myths that I will discuss in this blog. I welcome your questions and will try to give you factual answers even though those facts may vary from what is considered the proper standard of care.

Ken G. Knott, M.D.

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