Do We Really Have the Best Health Care System in the World?

Personal Experience

Medical professionals really haven’t helped me too much.  Doctors still have so much to learn, and they do so by experimenting on us.  They haven’t helped my backache, and they can’t seem to do anything about my Raynaud’s Syndrome (a condition which causes my hands to become cold and painful).  Dentist can’t even stop my toothache in a particular tooth, but they charged me $6K for “fixing” six others that weren’t bothering me.

Wrong Information

Doctors are forever telling us that certain diseases are caused by certain foods and nutrients in our diet, and then a few years later they inform us that avoiding those foods and nutrients caused an even worse health problem.  We should realize that doctors are just, ever so slowly, increasing their knowledge base (by using us as test subjects).

Wrong Treatment

I’ve seen doctors “treat” bursitis with useless physical therapy, and I’ve seen surgeons “heal” cancer by amputating limbs.

Surgical Mistakes

One of the cable news channels recently did some research about how often surgeons make mistakes during surgery.  The most common mistakes are to operate on the wrong patient and operating on the wrong part of the body; i.e., the wrong side of the body (even the wrong side of the brain!), the wrong finger, etc.  I’ve known men who have died during an angiogram (“test”), even before he was given a chance for bypass surgery.  I’ve known other men who have been given high hopes to endure this grueling bypass surgery, which led only to fluid on his lungs, atrial fibrillation, and depression.  I’ve known women with congestive heart failure, and doctors could only watch as she died a painful death.  I’ve known many people with diabetes who are “treated” with insulin shots and a strict diet, but who still died quite prematurely.  How many people do you know who have had repeated (and unsuccessful) surgeries for the same ailment, such as back problems?

Unnecessary Tests

Unfortunately, doctors often hinder rather than help.  They perform unnecessary tests or surgical procedures, and sometimes the patient dies.  Sometimes this happens because they underestimated a risk factor, they made a surgical error, or the patient contracted a staph infection in the hospital.

Death by Screening

Consider the doctor who administers an unnecessary screening for cancer.  Upon a positive result, he then treats the patient for a cancer that never would have caused a problem.  However, the treatment itself causes the patient to die, due to an infection or an innocent mistake during treatment.  How much good has that doctor done for that patient?  Without the doctor, the patient would still be alive and well, but with the doctor, the patient died and his family suffered.

Despite what we want to think, doctors are not healers, and they’re often wrong.  They simply do the things that they know how to do, regardless of whether it helps us or not.

For a more in depth article on this subject, please see Is Our Health Care System Really That Good?.

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