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Illinois Healthcare Professional Defense LawyerAuthors and physicians Drs. Adam Cifu and Vinayak Prasad wrote a blockbuster book in 2015 that is making news lately. The abrupt change in medical gospel, sometimes being rewritten every week, is a true disaster for patients who try to keep up with the ‘latest and greatest’ in medicine. The authors use the term ‘medical reversal’ to describe sudden flip-flops in standards of care. Medical reversals cause angst among not just the patients, but the doctors that now must face the fact that their advice and practice was potentially harmful or maybe not even helpful in any way.

Examples of therapies and medical strategies that turned out to be wrong include estrogen-replacement therapy after menopause, use of coronary stents to open narrowed coronary arteries, lobotomy, Vioxx, vertebroplasty, arthroscopic knee surgery to repair degenerative meniscal tears, and more.

The authors try to find out why modern medicine reverses itself and to make suggestions on how to make it stop. State of the art health care can be harmful or unhelpful. Why do a surgical repair of the meniscus in a knee when physical therapy is just as effective? The causes are very common – an inadequate scientific study or a flawed study due to financial bias. And if the treatment makes a lot of common sense, it is more likely to be useless, which is very counter-intuitive.

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