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Author Archive: denasdavis

About denasdavis

02/20/2017

“Docs v. Glocks”: Gag rule lifted

The American Academy of Pediatrics, the AMA, and the American Academy of Family Physicians all encourage their members to ask parents about firearms, in the same spirit as they ask about automobile restraints, swimming pools, and other factors that relate to the health of their patients.  If parents report that there are firearms in the […]

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10/15/2016

Suicidal “ideation”???

I Have you ever seen the word “ideation” except when paired with “suicidal”?  I’m hungry right now–am I experiencing hamburger ideation?  When I want sex am I experiencing erotic ideation?  Nope.  “Suicidal ideation” is term used by health care professionals to undermine the possibility that rational people can think about committing suicide and that those […]

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10/11/2016

Yes, You Were Misinformed

I love Joyce Wadler’s occasional columns for the New York Times. Under the general heading, “I Was Misinformed,” she comments with great wit on the various aspects of growing old.  But this week, she made a basic error that set me thinking.  Upset after visiting her mother, who has dementia, she calls her friend Harry: […]

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08/04/2016

Book review: “Inside the O’Briens”

Lisa Genova is a novelist I would love to meet. She is a Harvard-trained neuroscientist, but she probably doesn’t spend much time in the lab these days. In   2007 she wrote Still Alice, which became a best seller and, as they say, a major motion picture. Still Alice portrayed a vibrant, brilliant professional woman facing […]

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03/31/2016

Punish women for having abortions?

Donald Trump got into a lot of trouble yesterday for saying that abortions should be illegal and that women (as well as abortion providers) should be punished for having them.  It was a field day for Democrats, of course, but the pro-life forces were equally dismayed, and Republicans hastened to perform damage control, not wanting […]

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02/23/2016

Wheaton College

I guess this is the “other stuff,” in Bioethics and Other Stuff.  I am copying below my essay that was published today on the website of the American Academy of Religion, as part of Religious Studies News. Wheaton College, Larycia Hawkins, and Our Academic Life Together The case of Larycia Hawkins has brought much gnashing […]

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01/29/2016

I had to laugh…

I had to laugh. A recent article in Annals of Internal Medicine describes an experiment to determine the “safety and behavioral effect” of disclosing to subjects the pleiotropic effect of the APOE genotype. Pleiotropy describes genes that have more than one effect.  In this case, having the APOE4 version of the gene heightens one’s risk […]

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01/14/2016

Really???

In today’s New York Times, embedded in a report about drug companies wooing hemophilia patients, I came across a drug company with the name BIOETHICS ADVANTAGE.  What to say???

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12/21/2015

The FDA lifts ban on gay men donating blood–or does it?

The FDA announced today that it was ending a decades-long ban on gay men as blood donors.  This was greeted with huzzahs, as it appeared to lift an irrational and stigmatizing ban.  However, a gay man who wishes to donate must have been celibate within the last year, EVEN WITHIN MARRIAGE.  What gives here?  Are […]

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11/12/2015

Should we require HPV vaccine for school attendance?

As followers of this blog know, I hugely respect Aaron E Carroll, MD, who writes The Incidental Economist blog, and often writes for the NYT’s “Upshot” as well.  In the 11-9-15 “Upshot,” he talks about the disappointing uptake of the HPV vaccine (the one that protects against sexually transmitted herpes virus, which can cause cancer […]

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