Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Lewis Thomas

Dr. Lewis Thomas was a Doctor and the son of a Doctor. He was a brilliant writer. He told me on a television program that his father told him that until the advent of Penicillin, he could diagnose what was wrong with a patient, but not do much for him. Since then medical miracles have proliferated. Life expectancy has increased. So has "iatrogenics" --- doctor caused illness.

The old witch-doctors had something: If you believed you were being helped --- it helped. Today we call it the "placebo effect."

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