She is back home and looking well. It turns out that she had a chest infection which was described as ‘pneumonia’. Has ‘chest infection’, or the word ‘cold’ been redefined just as the word ‘disease’ has? The word ‘disease’ used to commonly mean some sort of infection. We even use that word to describe the bacterium or virus which cause the illness. Thus, influenza existed as an entity in itself. Flu could be passed from one person to another. You had to ‘catch’ the disease, influenza, from some other person, or, possibly, from a toilet seat or some such. You could catch diseases from eating contaminated meat, but not if you thoroughly cooked the meat.
I personally think that it is sad that the word ‘disease’ has been rendered almost meaningless as a result of its application to any condition at all, such as heart malfunction. It seems that even genetically acquired malfunctions can be described as diseases.
It is hard not to don one’s tinfoil hat and accuse Big Pharma of manipulating our language to suggest that ALL health conditions are ‘diseases’, and, as such, can be cured by pills, potions, and ‘medicinal compounds’. Thus, ‘smoking related diseases’ can be cured by nicotine patches and gums. “People will not succumb to lung cancer, COPD, heart failure, etc, if they use nicotine patches and gums”. I wonder why Big Pharma is taking so long to produce patches and gums to ‘cure the disease’ of obesity? “Eat all you like and slob-out on the couch. No probs. Just take one of our magic pills three times a day and the pounds will melt away. [Observed Contra-indications include multiple runny shit episodes]”
I had the same infection as Herself. It was one of those infections which take some time to shrug off. It took about three weeks before I stopped nose-blowing and coughing up phlegm. But it did stop, whereas Herself did not stop.
The word ‘pneumonia’ describes any condition which blocks the alveoli – the tiny sacs in the lungs where oxygen breathed in, enters the bloodstream. ANY condition which blocks the alveoli is described as ‘pneumonia’. It kills off very large numbers of very old people. The blockages do not have to be caused by bacteria or viruses. In effect, the very old person drowns because his body can no longer clear the blockages. It is called ‘old age’.
I have this vague idea. We start, at conception, with millions of switches which can only be switched ‘ON’. As we grow, the switches increase to billions during our youth. When we reach middle age, the creation of switches stops, and we then have to make do with whatever quantity of switches that we have at that time. Gradually, we use up the switches until some important part of our body, like the heart, runs out switches, at which point we peg out. Or the switches could get out of control and go wild, switching ON, ON, ON, ON, again and again, out of control, which might describe cancer. A simplistic idea, but not unimaginable. Has anyone seen a WHO paper on the reasons that people’s bodies do not stay permanently as fit as they were when those bodies were thirty years old? Why not?
What studies has the WHO instigated in its 70 year existence into THE CAUSES OF AGEING. Have any ‘experts’ in universities delved into the ageing process, and attempted to discover what physical changes cause death. I have a specific example.
We had a gerbil which belonged to our grandson. He went off to America and got married, leaving said gerbil in our care. We looked after it, but, one day, I found it curled up in its dust tray. It was dead. It had lived for about five years or perhaps longer. I buried it in the garden roughly alongside its brother/sister.
But why did it die? There was plenty food and water in its trays. It looked healthy enough. Perhaps we killed it via passive smoke. Do you see the problem with that idea? Statistical mumbo-jumbo would be totally useless to make such a decision.
Again and again, we come to the same issue. That issue is:
“How does a risk crystallise into a specific person contracting a ‘condition’ such as lung cancer?” There is only one reasonable answer, which is that the person was ‘susceptible’. That is the only answer if no ‘disease (infection)’ is involved.
So, in the Doctors Study, it is reasonable to infer that the reason that more heavy smoking doctors got LC was because they were susceptible. Why might they have been susceptible? Wartime experiences might explain.
But we do not know because the Doctors Study was a simple experiment. One could even describe it as a childish experiment. It was akin to adding 2 + 2 = 4 again and again. Why? Because it made the fundamental mistake of equating outcome with cause. The gerbil died. That was the outcome. The cause is not the same as the outcome.