This is a blog for the Mental Health Policy Class at the George Warren Brown School of Social Work.

November 16, 2006

When Blind Faith in a Medical Fix Is Broken

When Blind Faith in a Medical Fix Is Broken - New York Times: "A blocked artery is not a good thing. Public health campaigns have drilled that message into the national psyche. Surely, then, whenever doctors find a closed artery, especially in the heart, they should open it. Maybe not. A major study, presented Tuesday at a medical conference in Chicago, challenged the widespread use of tiny balloons and metal stents in people who had suffered heart attacks days or weeks before. Although such treatment can be lifesaving in the early stages of a heart attack, the study found that opening the artery later did no good at all. It merely exposed patients to the discomfort, risk and $10,000 expense of an invasive procedure. "

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