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June 30, 2020
Alcohol and drug use are on the rise in COVID World, but in contrast to the coronavirus, there will be no vaccine for drug and alcohol addiction. When the lockdown is over, drug and alcohol misuse is likely to be worse than ever. It’s time to revisit our forgotten epidemic: drug and alcohol addiction. Greg Pence discusses seven different models of addiction in search of the explanation— and the cure— for drug and alcohol addiction.
June 8, 2020
There’s abundant evidence of a concerted effort by the Chinese dissembling machine to conceal what was really going on in Wuhan since the last week of December 2019. They took active measures to suppress and destroy the overwhelming evidence that SARS Coronavirus-2, a.k.a. COVID-19, was rapidly spreading from human-to-human in Wuhan for almost a month before they finally acknowledged it to the world on January 20th. And the WHO didn’t challenge or confirm the veracity of the Official Chinese Narrative that there was “no evidence” that the novel coronavirus was spreading from human-to-human. Instead, the WHO largely echoed the false narrative, giving it credibility, for almost three weeks while COVID-19 was spreading around the world. “Seeds of Destruction” takes a hard look at the evidence in plain sight of what Chinese leadership knew and when they knew it. It also examines the “patsy” role of the WHO in the Fiasco of the Century.
May 26, 2020
Dr. Paul Offit is an infectious disease expert, virologist, and the author of seven medical narratives. Today we discuss Overkill: When Modern Medicine Goes Too Far. Definitely worth a listen.
May 4, 2020
Knowing how a pandemic started is the key to stopping the next one. A novel bat coronavirus first appears in Wuhan, China in late November of 2019.  This family of coronaviruses normally reside in bats living in caves 1000 miles south of Wuhan. Understanding where the virus came from and how it entered the human reservoir will help prevent a similar pandemic in the future.  No matter what you may have heard, no one has produced evidence to prove exactly where or how the virus entered the human reservoir. There are two competing theories to explain where this virus came from and how it entered the human reservoir. Both are plausible. Both have merit.  Episode two critically examines both theories of origin.
April 20, 2020
The worldwide spread of COVID-19 is being called the “pandemic of the century” by some. Others are watching the debacle unfold can only wonder if the response to the COVID-19 pandemic will someday be called “the fiasco of the century.” The 24/7 news channels have created worldwide mass hysteria by reporting events from a sensationalist point of view without giving appropriate context. Civilians are terrified. The economy has been damaged for a generation. These commentaries share observations, analysis, experiences, and perspectives from a narrator who is both an observer and a participant on the front lines of healthcare. Episode 1: Ill Prepared…
April 8, 2020
In Wuhan China and later Italy, the healthcare system was rapidly overrun with critically ill patients and insufficient resources to save them all. When the population’s health needs vastly exceeded the system’s capacity, “utilitarian ethics” quickly replaced normal medical ethics; disaster standards of care replaced normal standards of care. Ventilators and drugs in short supply were allocated only to those patients most likely to survive; family members were not allowed to visit dying relatives in the hospital, and CPR was suspended for COVID-19 patients. Entire countries have been shut down with catastrophic economic consequences to tens of millions of people in an attempt to contain the virus. In each case, the health of the community trumped the needs of the individual. Bioethicists Arthur Caplan and Gregory Pence discuss the complex ethical issues we face in a COVID-19 world.
April 2, 2020
Dr. Paul Offit is a virologist and infectious disease specialist from Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. We discuss the COVID surge in NY, immunity testing, the coming surge in California, the safest/best timing to lift the national quarantine, and much more.
March 24, 2020
As we enter the logarithmic phase of the U.S. COVID-19 epidemic, the Coronavirus Pandemic just got very real. Today we discuss the Federal government’s preparedness for this pandemic, protective gear shortages for healthcare workers on the front lines [especially N-95 masks], chloroquin, Remdesivir update, ongoing failures of testing, and much, much more. Today, Dr. Paul Offit assesses the arc we’re on and so far, it isn’t good. Definitely worth a listen.
March 18, 2020
The worldwide coronavirus pandemic of fear is escalating rapidly. In an attempt to avoid the spread of COVID-19 and a public health disaster “like no other,” life as we know it in the U.S. has come to a grinding halt. Today, world renowned virologist and infectious disease specialist, Paul Offit, talks about the draconian measures being taken in the U.S. to avoid repeating the Italian experience with COVID-19. He opines on the risks of expediting a COVID-19 vaccine, the tepid promise of antivirals (Remdesivir), sane measures to minimize exposure, the likely impact of widespread COVID-19 testing in the U.S., and much, much more. Definitely worth a listen.
March 10, 2020
A lot has happened in the world since last week! In today’s show, Paul separates fact from fiction on what we know about COVID-19 infections. He opines on the extreme [and often irrational] measures being taken worldwide to try and contain the coronavirus epidemic. Finally, he makes some cautious predictions about what to expect in the coming weeks. One thing is clear: the pandemic of fear surrounding the coronavirus is causing far more damage worldwide than the virus. It’s definitely worth a listen.
March 2, 2020
When I contacted Dr. Paul Offit last Thursday for an interview on the coronavirus, he was literally at the CDC getting the latest update on what’s happening with COVID-19. In today’s show, Paul separates fact from fiction on the coronavirus and makes some cautious predictions about what to expect in the coming weeks. It’s definitely worth a listen.
February 17, 2020
The most cynical surgeons like to say that anesthesiology is ninety-nine percent boredom and one-percent sheer terror. Strange Daze is about the one percent. The “one percent” can occur with any type of anesthesia, not just general anesthesia, which brings us to today’s episode: “On Pins and Needles.” Spinal anesthesia is still a popular alternative to general technique for certain types of surgery, but every anesthetic technique has its limitations, including spinal anesthesia. In today’s episode, our narrator learns the limitations of spinal anesthesia in his first year of anesthesia residency when assigned to the orthopedic “total joint” room. In the hands of a master, spinal anesthesia is a beautiful and elegant alternative to general anesthesia. In the hands of an inexperienced anesthesia resident, spinal anesthesia can suddenly and unexpectedly devolve into the “one percent”. You may be wondering how spinal anesthesia can go so wrong. Truth be told, in about a million and a half different ways… Tune in and you’ll find out how…
October 28, 2019
I have Dr. Paul Offit in the virtual studio to discuss seven stories of science gone wrong. The seven discoveries were initially promoted as “stunning scientific breakthroughs” but each one turned out to have a dark side that was harmful to the human race. Some of these “stunning breakthroughs” still threaten the future of our species today.   In the final part of the interview, I ask Paul to comment on some of today’s high-profile health controversies: e-cigarettes, Bisphenol-A, PSA screening for prostate cancer, mammograms, and Genetically Modified Food, and question if perhaps we’re repeating this same “science-gone-wrong” history. Paul presents some practical advice on how we can avoid repeating these same kinds of mistakes as we tackle our top challenges in science and medicine today.
October 7, 2019
Today we discuss the latest physician-fueled prescription pill epidemic. This time it’s Xanax and benzodiazepines, the class of drugs called “benzos.” As Yogi Berra once said, “It’s déjà vu all over again.” Whether it’s Xanax, Ativan, Restoril, Klonapin, or Valium, the bad news is that millions of people have become addicted to benzos through inappropriate physician prescriptions. Tens of thousands more have overdosed on benzos. Tune in to my interview with Dr. Anna Lembke, Chief of the Stanford Addiction Medicine Dual Diagnosis Clinic, and bestselling author of the expose on the prescription opioid epidemic, “Drug Dealer MD.” We discuss the other prescription drug problem and what we can do about it.
September 16, 2019
Every day we hear about otherwise law-abiding citizens with no history of mental illness or violence that snap and commit savage, senseless, and brutal acts of violence for seemingly trivial provocation. What caused them to snap? It turns out there are a limited number of triggers in our environment that cause the rage circuits in our brains to fire. The violent behavior is the result of the clash between our evolutionary hardwiring and these triggers in the contemporary world. Today I have neuroscientist, R. Douglas Fields, in the virtual studio to explain the biological roots of why we snap and to reveal the nine triggers that set off the hardwired circuits in our unconscious brain that move us to rage and aggression without us even understanding the reason for it.
August 19, 2019
Making sure today’s teens and adolescents receive appropriate treatment for chronic pain may help them avoid becoming another statistic in the opioid addiction epidemic in the future. Today, I interview pain psychologist Dr. Rachel Zoffness, author of “The Chronic Pain and Illness Workbook for Teens.” We discuss strategies that teens with chronic pain can use to turn down the volume on their pain, break the pain cycle, and get their lives back. Dr. Zoffness has a number of strategies and techniques that are likely to change the way you look at chronic pain, and studies have shown that these same strategies and techniques Dr. Zoffness discusses are more effective in treating chronic pain than opioid medication. If you are a teen with chronic pain, or know a teen with chronic pain, or are the parent of a teen with chronic pain, tune in and please share the episode!
August 12, 2019
Gene Healy, Vice President of the CATO Institute and author of “Indispensable Remedy: The Broad Scope of the Constitution’s Impeachment Power” and “The Cult of the Presidency”, is in the virtual studio to provide the analysis on the merits of the potential articles of impeachment against Donald Trump. Gene makes one thing clear: he’s not on the red team or the blue team and calls it exactly the way he sees it— no spin. Take a listen.
July 24, 2019
More than 1000 current or former federal prosecutors have signed a letter stating that: “The conduct of President Trump described in the Mueller Report would, in the case of any other person not covered by the Office of Legal Counsel policy against indicting a sitting President, result in multiple felony charges for obstruction of justice.” Today, I have former federal prosecutor and CNN Legal Analyst, Jennifer Rogers, in the virtual studio to explore the multiple acts by Donald John Trump described in the Mueller Report (Volume II) that would qualify as crimes and misdemeanors.
July 1, 2019
On this July 4th week, there are more than 80 members of the U.S. Congress calling for an impeachment inquiry into the crimes and misdemeanors of Donald Trump. So far, the two ranking members of Congress who could make that happen today, Nancy Pelosi and Jerrold Nadler, are resisting that pathway. Today, I interview Dr. John Gartner, contributing author to the 2017 bestseller “The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump” to find out why he believes that these members of Congress are correct and why the impeachment inquiry is necessary now.
June 17, 2019
The most cynical surgeons like to say that anesthesiology is 99% boredom and 1% sheer terror. Strange Daze is about the one-percent. This episode is about a routine anesthetic for a baby having a hernia repair that devolved into one of the most terrifying cases of my early career. For a pediatric anesthesiologist, a hernia repair in a healthy baby is about as straightforward a case as you’ll ever get. Until it becomes part of the one-percent. How can a routine anesthetic go so wrong? Truth be told, in about a million and a half different ways.
May 23, 2019
Obamacare 1.0 is terminal, but what will take its place? 2020 Democratic hopefuls are running on a platform that includes some version of universal health insurance, but only one bill, the Medicare for All Act of 2019, has more than 100 sponsors in Congress. This bill may be the most ambitious healthcare reform ever proposed in this country. If the Dems win back the Senate and the White House, Medicare for All is positioned to replace Obamacare. Today Ron Howrigon joins me to dissect the Medicare for All bill and how it is likely to affect providers, insurance companies, and the people it serves.
May 5, 2019
On the ninth anniversary of the signing of Obamacare into law, Donald Trump is trying to overturn it in the courts. Republicans in Congress have been trying to repeal and replace Obamacare unsuccessfully for more than seven years. Many Democrats acknowledge Obamacare is a rolling disaster and are divided between trying to “fix” it (whatever that means) and replacing it with some version of a Medicare for All plan. Obamacare 1.0 is the status quo and neither party appears satisfied...
February 24, 2019
The use of substances to enhance performance in sport--what we call “doping” today--is as old as sport itself.  In Episode I, we introduced the current anti-doping crisis in sport.  Today, we search for the origins of the anti-doping movement to understand how we got here.  This is Episode II in our six-part series: “The Anti-Doping Crisis in Sport.”
November 12, 2018
On September 20th, The World Anti-Doping Agency [WADA] made a “U-turn” and lifted the suspension on the Russian Anti-Doping Agency [RUSADA] even though they had not fulfilled the terms for their reinstatement and despite worldwide protests from its member anti-doping agencies and athletes. This has created what some insiders are calling the greatest anti-doping crisis in WADA’s history. But this is only the latest in a series of crises and scandals in the world anti-doping system that threaten their very existence. Today we begin our six-part series “The Anti-Doping Crisis in Sport” with the events leading up to the September 20th WADA decision to reinstate Russia and the background for those new to this important subject.
October 15, 2018
There is a growing wave of anti-rationalism that has been destroying respect for expertise and undermining our institutions, preventing rational debate. It is spreading an epidemic of misinformation, which threatens to weaken the very foundations of our democracy. Tom Nichols, a Professor of National Security Affairs at the U.S. Naval War College, discusses his latest book on this subject: “The Death of Expertise and the Campaign Against Established Knowledge.” If you’re an anti-vaxxer, an Obama birther, a 9/11 Truther, or if you believe there really are aliens at Roswell, you need to listen to this show.
September 3, 2018
In our haste to get a surgery started, sometimes we do things we shouldn’t do… And sometimes, we don’t do the things we should… In anesthesiology, either of these errors can have serious consequences…
July 23, 2018
On today’s show, Dr. Robert Wolff, author of the most extensive systematic reviews of cannabinoids used in medicine, analyzes the strength of the scientific evidence supporting the use of cannabis as medicine, and he separates fact from fiction in the “medical cannabis” debate.
June 20, 2018
The U.S. has an incoherent national drug policy. While states pass laws permitting the possession, sale, and distribution of marijuana for either medicinal or recreational purposes, Federal Law still prohibits the possession, sale and distribution of marijuana for any reason in all 50 states. For those who are undecided between complete prohibition of marijuana and fully legalizing it, tune in. My guest, Robert MacCoun of the Stanford Law School and the co-author of Drug War Heresies: Learning from other Vices, Times, and Places, does a masterful job of analyzing the pros and the cons of marijuana legalization. And for those of you that are absolutely convinced you’re right on either side of the marijuana legalization issue, please stick around. By the end of this show, you may change your mind-in either direction.
June 4, 2018
While much of the public conversation regarding legalization of cannabis is about its potential medicinal properties, the vast majority of Americans currently using marijuana are admittedly not using it for medicinal purposes. Today, we move beyond the discussion of the purported medical benefits, and Dr. Kai MacDonald examines five brain-based risks of cannabis in recreational users.
May 23, 2018
In Part II of the Cannabis Conversations, mental health expert and Addictionologist, Dr. Anna Lembke discusses the use and misuse of cannabis in vulnerable populations: those with mental health disorders, those addicted to opioids, and adolescents and young adults. We talk about the increased addictive potential of today’s cannabis, the increasing use of cannabis in the treatment of opioid addiction, Cannabinoid Hyperemesis Syndrome, and much, much, more…
May 11, 2018
On today’s show, we begin our 5-part series, Cannabis Conversations, with Dr. Mary Bridgeman. In this segment, we discuss the science, the complex pharmacology, and the pharmacokinetics of the different methods of cannabis ingestion. We also tackle the legal challenges surrounding cannabis use in the acute care setting, and the potential risks when using cannabis even in states where it is legal…and much, much more!
April 9, 2018
A California Lawmaker has written a bill to create a government-appointed commission to price-fix physician fees with the intent to control California healthcare costs, improve quality, and increase equity in California’s healthcare system. All objective evidence and experience suggests that government price-fixing of physician fees will accomplish none of those things. Today, I have healthcare economist and President of Fulcrum Strategies, Ron Howrigon, in the studio to analyze this bill and the unintended, and potentially disastrous, consequences to California’s patients, physicians, and hospitals.
April 2, 2018
Today I talk with NPR’s distinguished science writer, Richard Harris, about his latest book, “Rigor Mortis: How Sloppy Science Creates Worthless Cures, Crushes Hope and Wastes Billions.” We delve into the specifics about the broken culture that exists in biomedical research: the perverse incentives to publish rubbish, the reproducibility crisis in published research, and the lousy science that is the product of flawed research design and analysis. The most disturbing symptom of this dysfunctional culture is the massive increase in retracted papers and outright fraud. Richard exposes the broken culture in biomedical research, but he also tells us what some of the leaders in that field are doing to fix it.
March 19, 2018
Today we discuss two hot topics in plastic surgery: the “Brazilian butt lift” procedure and why it is the most dangerous plastic surgery, and the undisputed link between breast implants and a rare type of T-Cell lymphoma. Tune in to hear my guest, Board Certified Plastic Surgeon Dr. Ivan Turpin, put these issues in context to tell us who is at risk, how big the risk is, and what to do if you’re at risk.
March 15, 2018
Strange Daze is a bi-weekly podcast from the creators of Straight Talk MD, hosted by anesthesiologist Frank Sweeny. Each episode fuses narrative storytelling with science as our host examines a real case of a surgery or a procedure that went terribly wrong and dissects out why. Even the best doctors practicing at the best medical institutions make mistakes, and sometimes those mistakes have serious consequences. And sometimes, even when you do everything right, things can still go terribly wrong. The most cynical surgeons depict anesthesiology as 99% boredom and 1% sheer terror. Strange Daze is about the 1%.
March 12, 2018
The care for back pain in the U.S. has been called “the poster child of medical waste.” Today I talk with Dr. Richard Deyo, author of “Watch Your Back,” about the various treatments for back pain and what the evidence shows works and what doesn’t.
February 19, 2018
Today I talk with Tim Caulfield about his two national bestsellers: “The Cure for Everything: Untangling the Twisted Messages about Health, Fitness and Happiness” and “Is Gwyneth Paltrow Wrong About Everything? When Celebrity Culture and Science Clash.” Tim talks about what the evidence really tells us is good for our health, and deconstructs the misinformation, myths, and bogus claims coming from the pseudoscientists and some celebrities.  Tim is also the host of the popular Canadian documentary TV series: “A User’s Guide to Cheating Death.”
December 2, 2017
Today’s show is a conversation about the Dark Side of ten amazing medical firsts. In each case, the doctor’s desire to be first, whether for fame or money, clouded their judgment and put them in direct conflict with their ethical duty as medical scientists. Bioethicist Greg Pence and I countdown these ten amazing medical firsts, and discuss the ethical questions surrounding them. Case #1 is the first human heart transplant to coincide with the 50th anniversary of that event.
October 31, 2017
In recognition of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, I have distinguished breast surgeon, Dr. Michele Carpenter, in the studio to answer your questions on breast cancer diagnosis and treatment.
October 27, 2017
Today, Dr. William Elliott III discusses his book, “The Real College Debt Crisis: How Student Borrowing Threatens Financial Well-Being and Erodes the American Dream.” Dr. Elliot has a novel prescription for an entirely new paradigm to solve the student loan debt problem, and restore equitable access to higher education and The American Dream.
October 18, 2017
Today’s show is a remix of a show I did last January with Ron Howrigon, before Trump took office. As Trump was running on Repeal and Replace Obamacare, we talked extensively about what that would mean for healthcare. We also discussed Ron’s new book, “Flatlining: How HealthCare could kill the US Economy” and what was likely to happen to the U.S. economy & healthcare system if we don’t make some extraordinary changes soon. I hope you enjoy the show—it’s more relevant today than it was last January.
October 9, 2017
Since our earlier show on this subject, a lot has happened… More than 63,600 mental health professionals have signed a petition warning that Donald Trump is suffering from a grave emotional instability that makes him incapable of safely executing his duties as the President of the United States. On October 14th, the “Duty to Warn” organization will have town hall meetings throughout the United States to make their case for why he should be removed using the 25th Amendment of the Constitution. Today, I interview the creator of that petition to explore why he (and 63,600 other mental health professionals) believe Trump is mentally unfit to serve as President and should be removed. If you listened to the earlier version of this show, there’s a lot of new material and a lot of changes in this remix. This is the “producer’s cut.”
October 3, 2017
Julie Lythcott-Haims discusses her NY Times Best Seller: HOW TO RAISE AN ADULT: Break Free of the Overparenting Trap and Prepare Your Kid for Success.
September 22, 2017
In honor of the 21st anniversary of the birth of Dolly (the first cloned mammal), and the series finale of Orphan Black (a series that explores the ethics & science of human cloning), I had a far-reaching conversation about human cloning with Gregory Pence about the science, the ethics, the pop culture portrayal of cloning, and the popular misconceptions about what it would really be like to clone humans.
September 11, 2017
Today’s show is a collection of highlights from my apprenticeship with Master Allen Pike during residency...
August 21, 2017
Only 23% of America’s youth is qualified to serve in the army, while 77% is unfit to serve due to primarily physiological factors. By 2030, less than 10% of our nation’s youth will possess the physical fitness potential to be recruited for the U.S. army. Lieutenant General Mark Hertling is back in the virtual studio to discuss how our nation’s health is a national security crisis.
August 14, 2017
The U.S. Healthcare System is broken. Who will lead us out of the current chaos to the ideal healthcare system of the 21st century? Ultimately, the transformational changes in healthcare that will achieve the Holy Grail of universal access, high quality care, and cost reduction will be lead by ethical physician leaders. Here’s the problem- most physicians don’t have any training in leadership. Today, my guest, retired Lt. General Mark Hertling, discusses his book, his insights, and his experiences training physicians to become ethical leaders.
August 3, 2017
Narcissism has reached epidemic proportions in the U.S., with potentially devastating consequences. Today, I interview Dr. Keith Campbell the co-author of “The Narcissism Epidemic: Living in the Age of Entitlement.” We discuss the narcissism epidemic: how we got we here, the consequences, and what we can do about it.
July 18, 2017
There is a growing wave of anti-rationalism that has been destroying respect for expertise and undermining our institutions, preventing rational debate. It is spreading an epidemic of misinformation, which threatens to weaken the very foundations of our democracy. Tom Nichols, a Professor of National Security Affairs at the U.S. Naval War College, discusses his latest book on this subject: “The Death of Expertise and the Campaign Against Established Knowledge.” If you’re an anti-vaxxer, an Obama birther, a 9/11 Truther, or if you believe there really are aliens at Roswell, you need to listen to this show.
July 3, 2017
Over 55,500 mental health professionals have signed a petition warning that Donald Trump is suffering from a grave emotional instability that makes him incapable of serving safely as the President of the United States. Today, I interview the originator of that petition to find out why he believes Trump is unfit to serve, and what it could mean for the country in the worst-case scenario.
June 14, 2017
In my third month of residency, I administered anesthesia to my first pediatric patient. It did not go well. The case almost ended my anesthesia career, and almost ended the baby’s life. Today’s episode, “First Baby” is from The A-Files: Case #113…
May 29, 2017
In vitro fertilization is the most successful form of Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART) and has helped create millions of babies for couples who have failed to become pregnant using the old-fashioned, low-tech methods. It has also created some serious ethical questions. In the largely unregulated world of infertility clinics and IVF, anything that could happen has happened. On today’s show, I have a conversation with Bioethicist, Greg Pence, on IVF and ethics.
May 22, 2017
On May 4th, the “new and improved” American Health Care Act, aka “TrumpCare 2.0,” was passed in the House of Representatives, and is set to replace Obamacare. Ron Howrigon, the CEO of Fulcrum Strategies and author of Flatlining: How Healthcare Could Kill the U.S. Economy, is back in the virtual studio to discuss “TrumpCare 2: The Resurrection of RyanCare” and how it could affect us all.
May 8, 2017
Dr. Paul Offit and I discuss his latest book, Pandora’s Lab: Seven Stories of Science Gone Wrong. Dr. Offit discusses seven discoveries that were initially promoted as stunning breakthroughs in science, but turned out to be devastatingly destructive to mankind. Several of these “breakthroughs” are still affecting us all today and some could spell the destruction of the human race…
May 3, 2017
On Today’s show, I talk with Dr. Aaron Saguil MD, MPH, Associate Dean of Admissions at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences School of Medicine, about what it takes to get into medical school, how to increase your chances for success, and here’s the kicker- how you can get that medical education for free.
April 24, 2017
Today’s episode comes directly from The A-Files [The Anesthesia Files] Case# 472: “The Twilight Zone.” In this remarkable case, I discovered what happens to patients who are sent into “The Twilight Zone” for surgery. FYI: The A-Files are all true stories.
April 17, 2017
Dike Drummond MD discusses the dilemma of physician burnout, and some strategies for prevention. Dike is the author of “Stop Physician Burnout: When Working Harder isn’t Working,” and the CEO and creator of The Happy MD website.
April 10, 2017
We continue the discussion on physician burnout with Paul DeChant and Diane Shannon, authors of “Preventing Physician Burnout: Curing the Chaos and Returning Joy to the Practice of Medicine."
April 3, 2017
Today’s show is in honor of National Doctor’s Day. “A Sick Profession” is a three part series on the growing crisis of physician burnout, why the problem is growing, and the toll it’s taking on doctors and the healthcare system.
March 29, 2017
The TrumpCare bill died before it ever reached a vote in the House. Today, we examine “The Death of TrumpCare: How It Happened and Why It May Become Donald Trump’s Greatest Victory.”
March 20, 2017
This is a special edition of STMD from the "Frankly Speaking" files. Frank Sweeny tells the Allegory of the Bus as recited to him from the Master, and he explains how the lesson learned can be applied to TrumpCare.
March 13, 2017
On March 6, 2017, the House Republicans released their highly anticipated bill to repeal and replace Obamacare, called “The American Health Care Act,” or AHA. From the moment the bill was released, it came under fire from Democrats, Republicans, conservative groups, progressive organizations, the AARP, and nearly all healthcare advocacy groups. Today, Ron Howrigon and I perform a warm autopsy on the corpus of TrumpCare, and discuss why it is being opposed by virtually every segment of the healthcare delivery system and the AARP.
March 6, 2017
In his recent address to Congress, President Trump said he intends to repeal and replace Obamacare. Because Obamacare is literally a matter of life and death for many Americans, any plan to repeal and replace it will affect the lives of millions of people who depend on it. We examine the impact of the repeal and replacement of Obamacare with Dr. Rick Mayes, a former George Bush Sr. Administration Medicaid policy advisor.
February 27, 2017
The war on science may soon include a war on vaccines. Donald Trump still publicly expresses the idea that vaccines are associated with autism, which is at odds with the conclusion of the CDC, the American Academy of Pediatrics, the NIH, and virtually every other scientific agency in every country that has studied vaccine safety. Now Trump is reportedly forming a “Golden Vaccine Safety Task Force,” ostensibly to make vaccines “safer” and “assure scientific integrity.” Robert F. Kennedy Jr., an environmental attorney who still openly expresses a belief that vaccines cause autism, is on his list of people under consideration to chair that committee. In this episode, Dr. Paul Offit, an internationally respected authority on vaccine safety, separates vaccine facts from fiction.
February 16, 2017
In this episode, we tackle some of the most controversial ethical questions that arise in human enhancement, and the ethical approach to building a better human.
February 9, 2017
In honor of National Women Physicians Day, we speak with Dr. Karen Sibert, a nationally recognized MD anesthesiologist, a former professional writer for the Wall Street Journal, and author of one of the most widely read medical blogs, A Penned Point.
February 5, 2017
Burnout research pioneer, Dr. Christina Maslach, discusses job burnout, and what we can do about it.
January 26, 2017
For the anniversary of the Roe versus Wade decision, I talk with bioethicist Gregory Pence about abortion, Roe v. Wade, and the highly controversial Kenneth Edelin Case.
January 18, 2017
International anti-doping policy expert, Professor Paul Dimeo, discusses the circumstances surrounding the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency’s decision to strip Lance Armstrong of his medals, and ban him from competition.
January 9, 2017
Dr. Sweeny and Dr. Paul Yost discuss the recent FDA warning on the use of general anesthetics and sedation drugs in young children and pregnant women.
January 2, 2017
Ron Howrigon talks about his new book, “Flatlining: How Healthcare could Kill the U.S. Economy.” He discusses the looming economic crisis in healthcare that could be far bigger and more widespread than the auto industry and the housing market crashes combined.
December 28, 2016
Bioethicist Gregory Pence discusses ethical issues in treating alcoholism.
December 20, 2016
Sam Quinones joins us to talk about his book, Dreamland, and the origin and evolution of the prescription painkiller and heroin addiction epidemic in the U.S.
December 11, 2016
Dr. Anna Lembke discusses “Facing Addiction in America: The Surgeon General’s Report on Alcohol, Drugs, and Health” and what we can do about the addiction epidemic in America.
December 5, 2016
The executive director of Physicians for Responsible Opioid Prescribing, Andrew Kolodny, discusses the prescription opioid and heroin addiction crisis.
November 28, 2016
Tom Shroder, discusses his remarkable book, “Acid Test: LSD, Ecstasy, and the Power to Heal,” that chronicles the evolution of psychedelic drugs.
November 21, 2016
Dr. Anna Lembke discusses the forces behind the prescription pill epidemic and how we can solve it.  
November 14, 2016
We examine the controversies surrounding ADHD with Dr. Stephen Hinshaw, author of the critically acclaimed book, “The ADHD Explosion” and come up with the answers.
November 6, 2016
Healthcare policy expert, Rick Mayes, discusses where Obamacare is headed depending on who wins the election on November 8th.
October 30, 2016
Healthcare economist and President of Fulcrum Strategies, Ron Howrigon, is back in the virtual studio to discuss the status of Obamacare, and to answer the four-trillion dollar question: Is Obamacare Terminal?
October 22, 2016
In Part I of this series, healthcare expert, Ron Howrigon of Fulcrum Strategies, explains the broken U.S. health insurance system and why it cannot last.
October 17, 2016
Award-winning climate scientist and author, Michael Mann, talks about his new book “The Madhouse Effect,” climate change science, and why a small minority of scientists and politicians go to great lengths to deny, distort, or confuse the public on what the climate science tells us.
October 10, 2016
Dr. John Gleaves talks everything you ever wanted to know about sports doping, but didn’t know to ask.
October 4, 2016
For Breast Cancer Awareness Month, we invited Dr. John West back to the podcast to discuss optimal breast care.
September 26, 2016
We interview anesthesiology expert, Dr. Klane Hales, about the most common questions regarding anesthesia management for total hip and total knee replacement.
September 19, 2016
In this episode, we continue our discussion about ADHD with Dr. Lawrence Diller, a physician who has been treating patients with this disorder for over three decades and has testified before Congress as an expert witness to the President.
September 12, 2016
While six out of every one hundred children receive a stimulant for ADHD, twice that number have been labeled with ADHD. Why this meteoric rise in the diagnosis of ADHD? Why this dramatic rise in the use of stimulants to treat ADHD in the past four decades? Rick Mayes explains.
September 6, 2016
In this episode, Dr. Sweeny explores other medical and non-medical uses of the “eight billion amphetamine pills” and what lead to the end of “America’s First Amphetamine Epidemic.”
August 29, 2016
We examine the meteoric rise in the use of Amphetamines in American culture and “America’s First Amphetamine Epidemic” with Nicolas Rasmussen.
August 22, 2016
Dr. Sweeny interviews nationally recognized experts to set the record straight on the controversy surrounding vaccines and the current state of the scientific knowledge surrounding vaccine safety. Our diverse group of experts includes a geneticist, a pediatrician, an infectious disease expert, an epidemiologist, an autism expert, and a mercury expert.
August 22, 2016
Dr. Alberto Mendivil talks Human Papilloma Virus (HPV), warts (literally) and all. He discusses the vaccine, cancer, and how men and women are both at risk. Tune in for a special re-release for Vaccine Awareness Month.
August 15, 2016
Our guest, Dr. Marjorie Stiegler, presents simple strategies that can be implemented to reduce cognitive errors and enhance patient safety.
August 8, 2016
Despite evidence-based guidelines, protocols, and algorithms becoming available, why have patient deaths due to medical error increased? Dr. Marjorie Stiegler explains.
August 1, 2016
What is the solution to the air pollution and world climate change problem? Tune in as our guest, Mark Jacobson, discusses a detailed roadmap of exactly how we can supply all the world’s energy needs from wind, water, and solar power by the year 2050.
July 25, 2016
Is anesthesia safe for infants and children? Does general anesthesia have any long-term effects on learning, memory, or behavior? We welcome Dr. Paul Yost back to the podcast to explain.
July 17, 2016
In Part II of our series, Dr. S Jay Olshansky discusses longevity and life expectancy, and what the most powerful influences are on both.
July 11, 2016
Dr. S. Jay Olshansky discusses the science (and pseudoscience) of aging and how we can influence it.
July 4, 2016
Expert nuclear physicist, Dr. Kai Vetter, gives us an update on Fukushima five years after the meltdown.
June 27, 2016
Expert nuclear physicist, Dr. Kai Vetter, gives us an update on Fukushima five years after the meltdown.
June 20, 2016
Our post Father's Day show covers everything you need to know about Prostate Cancer, and just in time for National Men's Health Week. Dr. AJ Kar joins us.
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