Home - Patient Safety

Books

If your browser did not deliver you directly to the book you clicked to see, the books you can scroll down to see lower on this page include:

Death by Medicine, by Gary Null, PhD.

Should I Be Tested for Cancer?: Maybe Not and Here's Why, by H. Gilbert Welch M.D. M.P.H

Doctors Are More Harmful Than Germs: How Surgery Can Be Hazardous to Your Health - And What to Do About It by Harvey Bigelsen M.D.

A Sea of Broken Hearts: Patient Rights in a Dangerous, Profit-Driven Health Care System, by John T. James, PhD

Death By Prescription: The Shocking Truth Behind an Overmedicated Nation by Ray D. Strand M.D.

Confessions of an Rx Drug Pusher by Gwen Olsen

Overtreated: Why Too Much Medicine Is Making Us Sicker and Poorer by Shannon Brownlee

Medical Mafia, several books by several authors

. . . . . . . .

 

Death by Medicine  by Gary Null, PhD.

It's a warning. Healthcare is dangerous. We should go there less often and have less faith in what caregivers want to do to us.

It provides compelling evidence that health care frequently causes more harm than good and describes some of the reasons why.

Like his look at who is on the hospital, medical, and government health advisory boards. It shows conflicts of interest. For instance, half of medical school faculty serve as consultants to the pharmaceutical industry. The general public has faith in clinical research at universities to be unbiased and is unaware of the conflicts of interest that make their research, and their teaching, biased. Null makes us aware. And makes it clear why we cannot believe everything our doctors believe.

Patients will be safer if they learn from this book to be as careful and wary of medicine as Null is.

. . . . . . . .

 

"Should I Be Tested for Cancer?: Maybe Not and Here's Why"  by H. Gilbert Welch M.D. M.P.H.

Sometimes the best course of action is no action, even with getting tested. There are false positives. There is the pressure of the medical industry to do something when doing nothing is about as effective and vastly less disturbing. Mammography, PSA tests, fecal occult blood tests and a list of other tests are presented as though patients should feel guilty for not getting them. "Medical Correctness" is a compelling force. A book like this is needed to correct for it.

Reviews by health care professionals are on Amazon supporting the thoughts in this book.

. . . . . . . .

Doctors Are More Harmful Than Germs: How Surgery Can Be Hazardous to Your Health - And What to Do About It   by Harvey Bigelsen M.D.

He says that medicine's arrogance has been injected deep into our minds making us "sheeple.". . . We have put aside our critical thinking and we have entrusted our bodies . . . with those . . . whose decisions too often are based upon the last salesperson who visited.

One reader wrote, "Wow! This book is so simple, and makes so much sense. . . "

Another wrote, "I commend Dr. Harvey Bigelsen for educating us and hope that he continues to do so."

The Congressional Office of Technology Assessment published a report showing how modern scientific medicine has only been proven effective for "trauma care." We need to educate ourselves with books like these so that we can make smarter decisions about all the rest.

. . . . . . . .

 

A Sea of Broken Hearts: Patient Rights in a Dangerous, Profit-Driven Health Care System, by John T. James, PhD (links to Amazon.com)

Dr. James has two Masters degrees, a PhD in pathology and is a board certified toxicologist. In the space industry he works to ensure that the environment inside spacecraft does not harm the health of astronauts. He is the founder of Patient Safety America and writes a monthly newsletter in which he adapts material in major medical journals to make them understandable by non-physicians.

He says that there is little accountability in medicine, even for not keeping up with advances in the field, so many doctors just don't. He first began to understand this when his son died of electrolyte depletion (potassium and magnesium), a condition missed by the group of cardiologists caring for him. Through his work he now knows many people who have had such experiences with cardiologists. 

His son, Alex, was a very physically fit young runner who collapsed while running at his Texas University. He recovered spontaneously, but was taken by ambulance to a hospital. Running in the Texas heat caused him to be low on potassium (hypokalemia). But replenishing his stores of potassium (and magnesium) was not considered. Instead Alex was talked into having a costly left heart catheterization procedure which apparently damaged one of his ventricles. AFter that he should have been informed in writing that he shouldn't run anymore. He wasn't so informed, ran again and died. 

The author wonders why a catheterization was done in Alex's case in the first place. Could it be how profitable they are? Could it be the fact that cardiologists must sell 50-75 angiograms per year to maintain hospital privileges?

More such information can be read in one of the reviews of the book written on Amazon.com.

. . . . . . . .

Death By Prescription: The Shocking Truth Behind an Overmedicated Nation, by Ray D. Strand M.D.

Having blind faith in the FDA, your doctor, and the pharmacist to protect you is a bad idea. Their protection has resulted in adverse reactions to prescriptions being the #3 killer in the nation. As patients we need to read what to do about that, like going to www.drugstore.com or www.pdr.net and what to click on there and what to think about to understand medications before taking them. And how to establish an eMedAlert that notifies you about interactions between the drugs you are taking as new ones get added to your life.

. . . . . . . .

 

"The Trouble with Doctors: Fashions, motives and mistakes," by Ann Dally

Her contention is that such expectations have risen because we fail to appreciate the trendiness of medicine. What care you get depends on what medical thinking happens to be in fashion. There also is little appreciation for the variability between doctors, not just in ability but in belief and desire.

The book also has talks about motivation - doctors acting in their own interests.

She says that all medicine starts with what is fashionable, hoping that evidence eventually will confirm what they have chosen to believe, but, of course, lancing gums, removing elongated uvulas (tonsils), and such like were not confirmed to be good practices.

Will evidence based medicine save us from such bad practices? No. It's just another fashion.

. . . . . . . .

 

"Confessions of an Rx Drug Pusher," by Gwen Olsen

 

. . . . . . . .

 

Overtreated: Why Too Much Medicine Is Making Us Sicker and Poorer, by Shannon Brownlee

. . . . . . . .

 

Confessions of a Medical Heretic, by Dr. Robert Mendelsohn

A physician himself the author has graced us by stepping outside of the loyalties of his profession and confessed some of their sins.

". . . doctors working for drug companies have as their goal producing results that will convince the FDA to approve the drug. . ."

"Doctors in general should be treated with the same degree of trust as used-car salesmen."

"When I meet a doctor, I generally figure I'm meeting a person who is narrow-minded, prejudiced, and fairly incapable of reasoning and deliberation."

. . . . . . . .

 

The Medical Mafia
by different authors

Sometimes books like these are off the wall in certain ways but contain minutea from the experience of a caregiver that provides insight by showing the problem from another perspective.

The author of the first of these books says that we are told that the system is at the service of the patient, but, in reality, it is at the service of an industry that makes a profit on sickness. He calls this the Medical Mafia. Who hasn't experienced the financial aspects of medicine without feeling as though dealing with a gang of thugs? The title "Mafia" sounds extreme, but at important times it is hard to dismiss that label.

 

Medical Mafia, by Ghislaine Lanctot (shown above and below). One visitor to this site wrote, "It is truly an expose.  Once one reads this book, all of one's misconceptions regarding medicine will vanish.  I've been on the defensive ever since I read this book.  Any clear thinking and level headed American would be.  The evidence presented is overwhelming in its force and impact!" - Brent Tuthill, PhD. (doctoral certifications in Medical Sociology and Medical Statistics).

Index of Patient Safety Books