May 2011 Archives


Who should be worried about bath salts abuse?

I mean, what’s the worst that could happen?  You should start smelling great?  Believe me, I’ve had some people in my office that could use some abusive bathing.

But on a serious note, there have been some street drugs that are sold as bath salts and those can cause a lot of problems.

As far as the FDA is concerned, soap, bath oil, and legitimate bath salts aren’t regulated.  As for the Fair Trade Commission, there are some labeling requirements for products that make a claim (such as moisturizing the skin).

But the bath salts that have the feds worried now are a legal high – and they want to make all “highs” illegal. Read more on Stimulating Bath Salts — Avoid At All Costs…

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Jokes about how hard it is to read a doctor’s handwriting are older than Hippocrates himself.  Many think this is the only reason for someone to attend pharmacy school – to learn to decipher a doctor’s handwriting.

Actually, I’ve been told that mine is pretty easy to read – for a doctor.  At times, I scribble handwritten notes rather than typing into ever-present-laptop or dictating.  Later, when my husband is trying to decipher the notes to add to my blog or weekly newsletter he can come up with some new twists on the “unreadable doctor’s handwriting” jokes.

Obviously, I love a man with a sense of humor – even if it is at my expense. Read more on Illiteracy Is (Much Too) Widespread…

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The first known account of this plant, known by Latin (Carolus Linnaeus) nomenclature “Sceletum tortuosum allegedly dates back to Jan van Riebeeck, Dutch founder of South Africa. He appears, also, to have seen the first recorded comet that passed through that distant place, so we know he was educated enough to be a scientific dilettante at the very least. He has earned, rightfully, a lovely place in the history of South Africa. I am not knocking such status, mind you. I think few people would be clever or concerned enough to be scientific even at dilettante level in our day and age — thinking of even the cleverest of politicians. I am somewhat more concerned about what the South Africans seem to be excited about. Read more on African Drug Being Developed For Antidepressant…

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A Minneapolis nurse was accused of stealing pain medicine from a patient.  She had a fentanyl habit to feed, and didn’t seem to mind that it left her patient in substantial pain. Unfortunately for her, the patient was a Dakota County Sheriff’s Deputy.

Some women just make bad choices.

The reason I bring this up is not to wonder about if this woman is guilty or not.  I can tell you that I share one opinion with the judge — that people who ask for a lot of continuances may be getting everyone angry. Read more on Addiction And Nurses…


I am old enough to remember having briefly met then-senator from Massachusetts, John Fitzgerald Kennedy, at a synagogue breakfast in my hometown – a suburb of Boston.  He had donned a skull cap, and shook hands with my parents as well as with me.  I talked little in those days, which is a testament to how young I was. I could stand unaided, and the senator shook hands with me.

Pres. Clinton wears a yarmulke

Bill Clinton courts the Jewish vote

Years later, his was one of the first presidential elections I tried to follow.  People were very worried that he was Catholic.  In our neighborhood, anybody I knew who was not Jewish seemed to be Catholic.  It had never bothered me. I remember seeing on television some news-reporting-human asked him about his need to be obedient on the Pope, being a Catholic and all, and how that could limit his ability to serve. He gave what I thought then was a good answer, about not being obliged to do anything the Pope happened to say, but saying his service to the people of the United States came first. I had thought that a good answer at the time.

My parents had all kinds of concerns, as did many Jews of their generation, even though they habitually voted Democrat. Read more on Whose Beliefs Do You Follow? Your Own!…

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I Am A Doctor, But I Don’t Play One On TV

Personality-wise, the cranky and inconsiderate title character of the hit TV series House, MD are mirror opposites.  I actually LIKE people – especially people who need help (patients).

Obviously many people enjoy this series, since it is one of the highest rated. But for me, the challenge is to out-diagnose him.

In case you’ve never watched, the formula for each episode is a seemingly straight-forward illness, which (of course) is the wrong diagnosis.  The rest of the show is slapping another diagnosis on the patient, and testing the patient, which makes the patient worse.  Read more on Being Locked-In May Not Be So Bad For Everybody…


Stories about children having children are no longer the stuff that tabloid news is made of. They are everyday occurrences, although not usually as dramatic as the ten year old reported recently, in a cultural setting where such things are accepted — a cultural setting of gypsies that transcends usual divisions of governments and countries. I remember from my French medical education, how whenever a person of that group needed medical care, we were told that the person in question was in the family of their “king,” and special favors were requested as such.  I remember encampments in hospital parking lots, and very seductive young women dancing around for coins.

They reminded me of what Esmeralda in the “Hunchback of Notre Dame” ( the classic novel by Victor Hugo) must have looked like.  I stopped romanticizing them when someone who ran away quickly, and was allegedly one of “them,” tried to rifle my purse outside the hospital. All anyone has to do is open their eyes on the streets of the large cities of southern California, to see people who look like children (at least to Golden Oldies such as my husband and myself) who are pushing carriages full of babies and surrounded by tiny children orbiting the vehicle like satellites.

The question is — what is going on, and why. Read more on Early Puberty Causes — Chemical And Social…

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It is a sad fact of modern life that it takes tragedy to bring important information to the notice of the general public.  In this case – the death of a young person participating in sports. Read more on Sports Dangers Are Too Often Revealed In Tragedy…

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The Next Oprah?

There is a vacancy at the top --- who better?

A little fun for the holiday.  Happy and Safe Memorial Day from Dr. G.

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