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Old Health and Medicine Articles from 2007 and Before

The Benefits and Risk of Laparoscopic Cholecystectomy

In 1991 Dr. Joacques Perissat at the University of Bordeau, in France, announced to the World Congress of Surgeons that he had removed a gallbladder (cholecystectomy), using optical instruments inserted through a few small incisions. Now, 90 percent of gallbladder operations are done by fiber-optics. What are the advantages and what is its most devastating complication? And why is the crematorium the cure for some gallstones?

By Dr. Gifford Jones - Monday, May 26, 2008 - Full Story

How To Prevent Summer Hazards

“Thank God, it will soon be summer”, a patient recently exclaimed to me. I agreed, but I know as sure as night follows day that many people this summer will do dumb things.

By Dr. Gifford Jones - Monday, May 19, 2008 - Full Story

Read This, Then Go Out and Have a Beer

Years ago a speaker abruptly broke off his speech. He said, “I know you’re bored with this topic and I’m bored, so let’s quit and have a beer”. I felt this way and nearly tossed this column out. Why bother to waste paper on something you already know? But on the other hand a report from The Harvard Medical School shows its absolute madness that so many people are taking pills when two simple changes in lifestyle could prevent and treat some health problems. We can also learn from it what happens to a person who loses an arm.

By Dr. Gifford Jones - Monday, May 12, 2008 - Full Story

Kenya: Is It Safe to Travel There?

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Dr. Gifford-Jones in Kenya (W. Gifford-Jones, M.D.)“Why are you and a group of journalists going to Kenya when there’s so much violence?” a friend said to me.

I stole my reply from Sir Edmund Hilary when asked why he wanted to climb Mount Everest. Hilary replied, “Because it’s there.” But I also questioned whether T.V. pictures were telling the complete story of what was happening in Kenya, and was it a safe destination.

It’s a long flight to Nairobi and my brain was fuzzy on arrival. But not so dull that I couldn’t see these newspaper headlines at the airport, “Fires raging in Kenya” or “What a sad day for Kenya.” I started to worry my friend might be right.

By Dr. Gifford Jones - Tuesday, May 6, 2008 - Full Story

Beijing Trots And Other Travel Hazards In 2008?

How many people will travel to China for the Olympics this summer or elsewhere on this planet? I don’t know. But I do know many will raise this silent prayer to the Almighty, “Please, above all other worldly goods, grant me a bathroom”. Desperately needing a toilet is as close to panic as it gets when one isn’t available. But toilets can be the least of your worries if you fail to take other precautions when travelling.

By Dr. Gifford Jones - Sunday, May 4, 2008 - Full Story

Religious People: Shame, Shame, Shame

Why would I rather deal with the Mafia than some religious people? Because I hate hypocrisy above all other things. I know the mob has a code it follows strictly, such as it is, and it’s crystal clear to everyone what it’s all about. But religious people talk constantly about brotherly love and yet condemn fellow humans to death. It’s hypocrisy at its worst.

By Dr. Gifford Jones - Sunday, April 20, 2008 - Full Story

The Holiday Heart Syndrome: A Seaboard Romance?

What does the figure 2,575,440,000 indicate?  It’s not the national debt, or the increase in the world’s population in the next 10 years. Rather, if you live to 70 years of age, your heart will beat this many times. But sometimes it gets weary and develops an irregular rate called atrial fibrillation (AF). So can chocolate help to prevent this problem?

By Dr. Gifford Jones - Sunday, April 13, 2008 - Full Story

Dummy Pills, Guns and Doctors

Winston Churchill, Britain’s wartime Prime Minister, remarked, “To almost every question there is an answer that is clear, concise, coherent and wrong”! For years we’ve been told that anti-depressant drugs were the be-all-and-end-all for depressed patients. Now, a recent report claims that placebos are just as effective for many patients. So should doctors use placebos (dummy pills) to trick patients? The FBI (Federal Bureau of Investigation) helps to answer this dilemma.

By Dr. Gifford Jones - Wednesday, April 9, 2008 - Full Story

Rosacea :  An Overlooked Skin Condition

What did former President Bill Clinton have to blush about? We all know the answer to that delicate question! Like Princess Diana, Rosie O’Donnell and the comedian W.C. Fields, he also suffered from Rosacea.

By Dr. Gifford Jones - Monday, March 31, 2008 - Full Story

The Powder Room : Course 101 In Overactive Bladder

Whoever remarked “Timing is everything” was right. I recently wrote about simple ways to prevent urinary infections. This triggered numerous requests from readers asking, “But what can be done when you’re constantly rushing to ‘you know where’?” Their timing couldn’t have been better. A new web site, The Powder Room, now has a bilingual Course 101 on Overactive Bladder (OAB). It contains “Everything you’ve always wanted to know about OAB and didn’t know who to ask”.

By Dr. Gifford Jones - Sunday, March 16, 2008 - Full Story