1. Last week, Rich, I cured
a woman of cellulitis, which was a life-threatening soft tissue infection she'd gotten after a cat bite. I cured
two people of pneumonia. I cured
a man of septic shock due to a bone infection. Tomorrow I have my pediatric HIV clinic, which is my subspecialty. HIV cannot be cured. It CAN be prevented, but these were unfortunate children who were born to HIV positive mothers who had not been detected in time. While I cannot cure them of HIV, I can prevent AIDS by treating these children with antiviral medications. I have a 22 year old patient who was born with HIV who just graduated from college and is going off to graduate school, and this is solely because of the medications. That's what I do. Where did I ever mention a "symptom" here?
2. Here are the three original scientific articles from the current issue of The Lancet, one of the most prestigious medical journals. Please illustrate to me how this exemplifies symptom management, and how these are tied to drug industry manipulation.
Incidence trends for childhood type 1 diabetes in Europe during 1989-2003 and predicted new cases 2005-20: a multicentre prospective registration study
: European Community Concerted Action Program
: If present trends continue, doubling of new cases of type 1 diabetes in European children younger than 5 years is predicted between 2005 and 2020, and prevalent cases younger than 15 years will rise by 70%. Adequate health-care resources to meet these children's needs should be made available.
Progesterone for the prevention of preterm birth in twin pregnancy (STOPPIT): a randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled study and meta-analysis
: Chief Scientist Office of the Scottish Government Health Directorate.
: Progesterone, administered vaginally, does not prevent preterm birth in women with twin pregnancy.
Prevalence, treatment, and associated disability of mental disorders in four provinces in China during 2001-05: an epidemiological survey
: China Medical Board of New York, WHO, and Shandong Provincial Bureau of Health
: Substantial differences between our results and prevalence, disability, and treatment rate estimates used in the analysis of global burden of disease for China draw attention to the need for low-income and middle-income countries to do detailed, country-specific situation analyses before they scale up mental health services.
And by the way, I do NOT deny the excessive and deleterious effect of industry influence on medicine. However, I think it's overblown, naive, and harmful to reject all medical research as you do when it's plain for the eye to see that there is good research being done that focuses on cure, on prevention, on quality improvement, on epidemiology, on cost-effectiveness, and this is often without the vested interest of industry.