A local man has been crippled by a growth on his spine that developed after he traveled overseas to a so- called stem cell clinic. The growth was not from his own cells. So, not only is the treatment untested, doctors don't know what to do about the bad outcomes. Here's the technical explanation from … Continue reading NEJM: One man’s tragic try at “stem cell” therapy. Will we soon be seeing ads for overseas CRISPR clinics?
Certain that years of meds, scotch, steak and surliness had gotten to my Mad Men-era dad, we agreed to donate his brain to Harvard. He came up clean - not a trace of damage or plaque. The findings are actually missing, not the samples. The Boston Globe reports: McLean Hospital said Tuesday that information about … Continue reading My father’s brain is missing
The scene at the FDA hearing was familiar. All the advisory committees have seen it play out again and again. Yesterday, it was the Pulmonary-Allergy Drug committee: The pharma doc with the convincing statement. The weeping patients. The drug likely to cost a couple thousand a month offering a slim benefit over an existing drugs. … Continue reading Should the FDA approve Vertex’s new cystic fibrosis drug?
After pushing mammograms for years, breast cancer advocates have had a hard time pulling back. Still the evidence keep piling up that message about surviving breast cancer is more complicated than early detection. What this study by Boston researchers doesn't measure: the scores of women who say -- If there's a chance it's cancer, I … Continue reading 2 Boston studies: Breast cancer costs and medical records benefits
Do we need evidence-based evidence? How effective is our medical research system? What are we getting for the $30 billion that goes into university and hospital labs? Here are a couple of stories from local writers with some discouraging answers to those questions. Carolyn Johnson's piece on poor quality of medical research was tucked under the … Continue reading What is wrong with medical research? Boston health writers raise important questions
Two recent Boston Globe items of note: Local hospitals prep for ebola In response to the West African outbreak of the deadly Ebola virus, some Boston hospitals are instructing clinical staff to ask patients as soon as they arrive about their travel histories, and reminding doctors and nurses of the symptoms. But hospital officials say … Continue reading Boston Globe reports: Biolab & ebola
Two items of note, including one from obit writer Bryan Marquard on a patient who survived Mass General's first living-donor double-lung transplant which was "so new that no one could venture odds for long-term survival.Mr. Bean was 20 that July day as he lay on the operating table, helping advance science as much as he hoped to extend … Continue reading In today’s Globe: Stem cells, retractions, cystic fibrosis and lung transplants.