The Medical Terror

Because of my advanced years, I have to take certain medicinal compounds. I call them ‘my brain pills and my wee pills’. With my last repeat prescription came a note saying that doctor wanted me to have a blood pressure check, so I went to the surgery today. After a bit of buggering about, the Practice Nurse did me. (I’m not sure if ‘did’ is the best of words, but it beats ‘looked after me’ or ‘saw to my needs’). Anyway, she did me in the sense that she took my blood pressure. She said that it was a bit high (162/78). Ideally, she opined, it ought to be around 140/90. I said that I was not aware of any ill effects, to which she replied that you don’t feel any ill effects. So, what’s the problem? I thought. Needless to say, the questions then followed, and guess what the first one was? You are right. And how much? I replied that I smoke a lot. And booze? A lot – like a bottle of red wine per day. But I do not do heroine, cocaine or marijuana. And I am always physically busy, busy. And I know all about the propaganda. And I have no wish to live until I am 99. And I am 76 years old. And I tend not to cooperate with people who wish to frighten me.

She was a very nice person and did not push anything. She gave me 8 pages of info about high blood pressure. It was quite interesting to read, but, as usual, it was ‘one size fits all – standard human being’ stuff. Quite a lot of mentions of the evils of tobacco and alcohol. Funnily enough, on the very last page appears this statement:

Smoking does not directly affect the level of your blood pressure. However, smoking greatly adds to your health risk if you already have high blood pressure. You should make every effort to stop smoking. If you smoke and are having difficulty in stopping, then see your practice nurse for help and advice. 

Is not that first sentence interesting? What it means is that, despite innumerable epidemiological studies, and despite loads of bias, no studies have found a correlation between smoking and high/low blood pressure.

But wait! There must have been lots of such studies. Where are they? Smoking does not directly affect the level of your blood pressure. Erm… Could it be that such studies have shown a protective effect?  However, smoking greatly adds to your health risk …. What is a ‘health risk’? Does it mean ‘a risk of being healthy’ or does it mean ‘a risk of being unhealthy’? I suppose that you have to forgive sloppy terminology sometimes.

But what I found most weird was what was happening in the waiting room. There is a big TV. There is a none stop loop of misery on display. Misery about smoking; misery about drinking; misery about eating. Minute after minute after minute of looped misery. One could imagine a patient going into the doctor’s room and saying, “I came to see you because I thought that I might have broken or strained my little finger, but, after watching your TV, I think that I need a total medical examination, with all the scans possible, plus antidepressants. I was OK before, apart from the pain, but I now feel really, really ill”.

I wonder…. Although I did my best not to watch the TV, it still impinges upon one’s consciousness. Did that bombardment of misery affect my blood pressure? It might have. What about patients who are already worried sick about some specific condition? Does the bombardment lift their spirits? Would not Tom and Jerry cartoons not be much more lifting? In such cartoons, sound does not include speech. It consists of ‘bash, bang, thump’. There need not be sound on the TV. Anything that amuses assists the patient. Total wall-to-wall misery does not. Imagine a hospital ward with similar TVs showing similarly looped misery. It does not bear thinking about.

There is only one explanation for the looped misery – Dr Chan, the owner of the practice, gets paid to for it. Who pays him? What does he get paid? Are those payments repeated throughout the land? Or is he forced to have the TV in his waiting room? That is probably just as bad, if the taxpayer is paying for thousands of TVs.

The Tobacco Control Industry has truly become a tyrant. There is no other word. Words like fascist, totalitarian, are far too erudite to describe the Tobacco Control Industry. It is a simple tyranny, in the nature of Pol Pot, Stalin, Mao Se Tung, Genghis Khan, Hitler, Gadaffi, Henry VIII, Caligula, etc. A simple tyranny. Tyranny does not have to be bloody. It can be bloody if the blood of only a small number of people is shed. Tyranny is just as evil if it persecutes lots and lots of people in a small but hurtful way. Eventually, there will appear a death, as illustrated by ‘the smokers’ graveyard’. Someone, somewhere will fall off a balcony, or lock himself out in freezing weather, or be mown down by terrorists. The graveyard is filling up with real deaths, whilst the Tobacco Control Industry’s imaginary world is filling up with imaginary, spritely, economically active, 90 year olds. The reality of the tyranny is lonely old aged people whose bingo hall has closed down, lonely people whose local pub has closed down, hospitals and doctors’ practices groaning under the pressure of the ailments of those people, as well as the imaginary ailments of frightened people.

Cameron and all the other politicians have completely lost the plot. Two recent laws have shown it. The Plain Packaging thing and the Smoking-In-Cars thing are symptomatic of a general malaise, which is coming out in the EU dispute.

In the EU dispute, the reality is that ‘reform’ is not possible without a new treaty. The only other way is to terminate the treaty.

What the EU thing shows is that ‘Totalitarianism’ (one size fits all) does not work. PP is a joke. It will take only a few months for people who enjoy tobacco to totally disregard the packaging. Cigs might as well come in brown paper bags for all that it will matter. Much the same will apply to the ‘Smoking In Cars with Kids Present’ stuff. No one will give a shit except non-smokers. Erm…. I mean that non-smokers will carefully obey the law. No one else will.

Why did Cameron et al pass these laws?

I do not know, and I suspect that they themselves do not know. Why should they? The Middle East is aflame; The Ukraine is aflame; Russia has annexed the Caucuses. What the fuck do car bans and PP matter? Cameron and co see themselves as Emperors, and so permit witch-hunters to do their thing ‘for the benefit of children’.

Anti-EU Directive sentiment is building up into a volcanic explosion. I don’t just mean just unpopular stuff. I mean the whole ‘Elitist, Tyrannical State’. The EU is not yet ‘a State’, and yet it is a member, in its own right, of the UN.

The political EU could have been a great thing -eventually. But any reasonable person can see that it has tried to run before it can walk. There is no political, economic or social reason that EU Nations should not cooperate, even politically, but what needs to be done away with is the States is the acceptance of dictats.

We are ‘citizens’ and not’servants’.

 

 

 

 

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7 Responses to “The Medical Terror”

  1. Some French Bloke Says:

    From the last page of the leaflet: “Smoking does not directly affect the level of your blood pressure. However, smoking greatly adds to your health risk if you already have high blood pressure”

    Your comment: Is not that first sentence interesting?

    Couldn’t it be because tobacco smoking acts as a cardiotonic in some people and not in other, and the same would apply to coffee drinking?
    And there’s been precious little “health advice” handed out about the hazards of coffee drinking in the last sixty years, as compared to the anti-smoking tsunami we’ve been subjected to in the meantime. And coffee contains “known carcinogens” too, the toasting process (i.e. combustion) lasting between 15 and 23 minutes. Does “Big Coffee” pay protection money?

    • Rose Says:

      And coffee contains “known carcinogens” too, the toasting process (i.e. combustion)

      Do not even try SFB, I am way ahead of you. I was late for tobacco so I’ve made sure that I am early in the defence of my other pleasures.

      Beware of prohibitionists from the early part of last century

      “Fritz Lickint declared coffee a carcinogen but Hermann Druckey challenged the idea, pointing out that Lickint’s coffee beans had been roasted at artificially high temperature, producing tars and carbonized chemicals that would not normally occur in the routine process of coffee making.”
      Proctor – Nazi War on Cancer

      As you probably know, Fritz Lickint also invented passive smoking quite apart from writing an enormous book translated as “Tobacco and the Organism”,

      Just a taster.

      niacin – old name nicotinic acid.
      trigonelline – turns to nicotinic acid when roasted.

      Both pyridine alkaloids

      Anti-invasive activity of niacin and trigonelline against cancer cells.

      “”The effects of niacin, namely, nicotinic acid and nicotinamide, and trigonelline on the proliferation and invasion of cancer cells were studied using a rat ascites hepatoma cell line of AH109A in culture. Niacin and trigonelline inhibited the invasion of hepatoma cells at concentrations of 2.5–40 μM without affecting proliferation. Hepatoma cells previously cultured with a reactive oxygen species (ROS)-generating system showed increased invasive activity. Niacin and trigonelline suppressed this ROS-potentiated invasive capacity through simultaneous treatment of AH109A cells with the ROS-generating system. The present study indicates for the first time the anti-invasive activities of niacin and trigonelline against cancer cells”
      http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15785001

      Basic Chemical Reactions Occurring in the Roasting Process

      “The best cup characteristic are produced when the ratio of the degradation of trigonelline to the derivation of Nicotinic Acid remains linear. The control model of this reaction ratio is a time/temperature/energy relationship. The environment temperature (ET) establishes the pyrolysis region for the desired chemical reactions while the energy value (BTU) and system transfer efficiency (STE) determines the rate of reaction propagation and linearity of Nicotinic Acid derivation to degradation of trigonelline”
      http://legacy.sweetmarias.com/roast.carlstaub.html

      “Caffeine is naturally produced by several plants, including coffee beans, guarana, yerba maté, cacao beans, and tea.

      For the plants, caffeine acts as a natural pesticide. It paralyzes and kills insects that attempt to feed on the plants. The molecule was first isolated by the German chemist Friedrich Ferdinand Runge in 1819.”

      http: //chemistry.about.com/od/moleculescompounds/a/caffeine.htm

      Why you SHOULDN’T give up coffee in the New Year: Regular drinkers ‘have a lower risk of sudden death, diabetes and cancer’

      “Caffeine may also help protect the brain against Parkinson’s disease
      Appears to speed up processes that help to heal damage in the body
      Comes after another study found coffee can help dieters stay slim”
      http: //www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-3377532/Why-SHOULDN-T-coffee-New-Year-Regular-drinkers-lower-risk-sudden-death-diabetes-cancer.html

      But they are wrong, it’s not the caffeine that for some reason everyone thinks of when anyone mentions coffee.

      “In 1941 Hitler Youth handbook declared that for young people at least, caffeine was a poison in every form and in every strength.

      Parkinson’s protection without caffeine or nicotine

      “Decaf coffee and nicotine-free tobacco aren’t just for the health-conscious. Giving them to flies with a form of Parkinson’s disease has revealed that although coffee and cigarettes protect the brain, caffeine and nicotine aren’t responsible for the benefit.

      If the compounds that put up this brain defence can be identified, they may offer a preventive Parkinson’s treatment where none currently exists, says Leo Pallanck, a neuroscientist at the University of Washington in Seattle, whose team led the new study.

      “We think that there’s something else in coffee and tobacco that’s really important,” he says.”
      https: //www.newscientist.com/article/dn18814-parkinsons-protection-without-caffeine-or-nicotine/

      Give up yet? : )

  2. Timothy Goodacre Says:

    Yes these health idiots are the real ‘Fascists’. My surgery is full of medical porn as cigarette packets will be shortly.

  3. smokingscot Says:

    About 1 in 5 people show elevated blood pressure simply because someone is taking their BP.

    If you’ve been going to the same practice for several years they should have a record of your BP readings.

    Many people go through life with “high” BP so the a competent professional will always relate it to your past history.

    It does go up with age anyway on account of accumulated crud in the blood vessels and they tend to narrow as well.

    I have high BP – always have – however there was one pratt of a Doctor who laboured on about it and the need for me to go on to medication. Got right irked at that, Googled it, then started taking one Hawthorn tablet every day for the remainder of the period I was under treatment (a really, really bad lung infection) and by the end of that I was down to “normal”.

    Quit the Hawthorn that day.

    • Rose Says:

      That’s called White Coat Hypertension

      I can be calm as anything but as soon as that band really starts to tighten I go all fight or flight.

  4. Roberto Says:

    I understand and sympathize with the “medical terror” that you describe. I had cancer 9 years ago. It was a non-Hodgkins lymphoma, which is not one of the “smoking related” cancers (epidemiological research shows no correlation whatsoever between smoking and this tumor). I got the diagnosis and my first chemotherapy in a hospital in the USA. The first oncologist who treated me realized that smoking my cigars and pipes kept me away from total depression, so he allowed me to smoke outside the hospital. Very soon he was nastily castigated and slammed by the other doctors. The following day he absolutely forbade me to smoke. Other doctors came to tell me all sorts of horror stories (showed me nasty pics of cancerous throats and mouths that allegedly occur to pipe/cigar smokers), they all warned me on how much I risked horrible death by smoking. Now I know that the risk is small (smaller than lung cancer risk in cigarette smokers) and that pipe/cigar smokers on average live longer than non-smokers. Then I didn’t know and got quite scared.

    Being a patient and lacking the “expertise” and the info, you are completely at the mercy of the medics, you really surrender. So, I tried to quit and took nicotine pills and patches, which were useless. I still craved for my smoking, so I decided to rebel against the medics and to keep smoking, reasoning that if I would die I wanted to die with dignity, not with depression. In the end, nothing happened, the evil substance didn’t kill me. I did stop smoking for three months once the treatment began, not because all this fear mongering, but because my body rejected lots of food items and also the taste of tobacco, all this due to the effect of the chemotherapy (which is literally poison) that kills the cells that protect the organs of the digestive system. I continued my treatment in Mexico, where doctors were not so fanatical anti-smokers and thus gave the usual sermon but did not make an issue of this.

    A final reflection: I survived this cancer because for this type of tumor epidemiological research has the right statistics: they know the right doses for all the substances. But getting statistics on how patients react to doses of substances is very different from getting statistics on correlations between smoking and cancer or hearth disease or high blood pressure. It is funny how epidemiological research can be helpful as long as it does not involve smoking. The moment smoking is brought in, science goes out of window and epidemiologist and other medics become medieval exorcists trying to save you from the devil.

    • junican Says:

      Sorry to hear about your troubles, Roberto, and I am glad that you were cured. I too had a malignant cancer on my skin, just below my eyebrow. It was cut out and the surgeon said ‘that he had got it all’. Heaven only knows how a particular skin cell at that location, and only at that location, came to turn cancerous. I would not be surprised if tobCon would claim that it was tobacco smoke, lingering on my skin just there and nowhere else, which caused the problem.

      I don’t believe a word ‘public health’ says. In fact, I do not believe that the charlatans are actually part of public health at all.

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