This Week's Interesting Medical Posts
From Science Roll: ambulance rides in different parts of the world. This is Budapest:
Slate is one of the few online magazines I read regularly. Their "Human Nature" column is particularly good. A sample:
Several U.S. military widows have produced children using their dead husbands' sperm. These are not pregnancies that were underway when the husband died; they're pregnancies that didn't exist. A leading sperm bank has offered discounts to servicemen going to Iraq; many have banked sperm in case they're exposed to chemicals that damage their fertility. Arguments for using the sperm: 1) It's part of the life my husband and I could have had. 2) "When he died, I was 40 and it's not like I had time to look for another person." 3) The sperm bank offered servicemen the discount explicitly "to help ensure the future of their families." 4) The child can be "something good that came out of the war." Objections: 1) Maybe "the guy hadn't planned to die, so he didn't say you could use his sperm." 2) Even if he did, the widow might regret bearing his child when she later "meets someone else." Related: 1) The first court-approved production of a baby between a corpse and a stranger. 2) Human Nature's take on making and selling embryos from stranger/s.Medgadget discusses scientists altering the sexual orientation of worms, which the mainstream media has also found particularly interesting.
Science Roll (again), one of the best "Medicine 2.0" blogs, reviews a game which simulates open heart surgery.
Trixie Tracker is a program which helps new parents graph and monitor their baby's habits. From the website:
Learn more about your baby's needs and behavior. Track daily patterns. Share online with family and friends. Get more sleep.I heard about this program when Merlin Mann twittered this:
See how Trixie Tracker's rich, informative charts and striking visual summaries help you better understand your amazing baby.
So far, each of E's health-care providers looks up from my Trixie Tracker printouts with an expression that says "Clearly, you are insane."John Edwards (the presidential candidate) proposed a 2-year ban on new drug ads.
Doctor's bags are in style, apparently due to the show Gray's Anatomy.
The source of optimism in the brain has repotedly been discovered.
And finally, Respectful Insolence asks, "What cigarette do you smoke, Doctor?"