Archives for February 9, 2009

THC and testicles

I’ve been working on a pun for this, but haven’t had any luck.  Yours is solicited, in the comments.

Cannabis could cause testicular cancer – study

Smoking cannabis could increase the risk of developing testicular cancer by 70 per cent, scientists have warned.

telegraph The team interviewed 369 men with testicular cancer, in the Seattle area – mostly in their 20s and 30s – about their history of marijuana use.

They then compared their responses with those from just under 1,000 men without the disease from a similar area and age group.

Even after other "lifestyle" factors such as smoking and drinking as well as risks such as a family history of the disease, cannabis use emerged as a significant possible cause, the study published in the journal Cancer concluded.

Regular or long-term cannabis smokers appeared twice as likely to develop the disease as those who had never used the drug.

Being a regular marijuana smoker at the time of diagnosis was associated with a 70% increased risk.


Or, it could be something in the munchies.  That’s the problem with associations in medical research.

Degree Creep, Indeed

  It was a shot heard ’round the PA world.advanceforpa

The U.S. Army and Baylor University created a stir when they announced their PA clinical doctorate degree residency program in emergency medicine at the Physician Assistant Education Association forum in Tucson, Ariz., in November 2007.

Doctorate degrees have been increasing among health care professionals for more than a decade. Audiology, physical therapy, occupational therapy and pharmacy, for example, have all moved to the entry-level doctorate degree. The nurse practitioner profession adopted the entry-level doctorate degree in 2006, and the DNP will be mandated for all advanced practice nursing graduates by 2015.

Even though the specter of doctorate degrees has been hanging over the PA profession for years, the formal announcement of the Army program brought the controversy to the forefront. News of the Army’s program roiled educators at the PAEA forum and sparked furious debate about clinical doctorate degrees and PAs

It’s a very well-written article, and the included sidebar points out one of the biggest problems with a ‘midlevel doctorate’ for PA’s: they’re dependent on their relationship with Physicians in a way NP’s definitely aren’t.  No support for this from docs=real problems for the PA programs (and not just the doctoral programs, all of them).

We live in interesting times.

Nadeem Esmail Says Nationalized Health Care Will Cost Us Pain and Suffering –

Nadeem Esmail Says Nationalized Health Care Will Cost Us Pain and Suffering –
‘Too Old’ for Hip Surgery
As we inch towards nationalized health care, important lessons from north of the border.


President Obama and Congressional Democrats are inching the U.S. toward government-run health insurance. Last week’s expansion of Schip — the State Children’s Health Insurance Program — is a first step. Before proceeding further, here’s a suggestion: Look at Canada’s experience.
[The Americas] Martin Kozlowski

Health-care resources are not unlimited in any country, even rich ones like Canada and the U.S., and must be rationed either by price or time. When individuals bear no direct responsibility for paying for their care, as in Canada, that care is rationed by waiting.

You don’t say.