Archive for the 'medical_science' Category

Excuse Me. Is That a Frog in Your Uterus?

Monday, June 28th, 2004

From the BBC: Iranian woman ‘gives birth to frog’.

An Iranian newspaper has reported the controversial story of a woman who claims to have given birth to a frog.

The Iranian daily Etemaad says the creature is believed to have grown from larva to an adult frog inside her body.

While it is unclear how this could have happened, the paper carries quotes from medical experts who say there are human characteristics to the animal.

It has been speculated that the woman, who has not been named, unknowingly picked up the larva while she was swimming in a dirty pool.

Link courtesy of Patrons of the Absurd.

Scott Forbes on Operation Iraqi Freedom

Sunday, June 27th, 2004

From Scott Forbes’ Sovereign immunity:

Imagine that Iraq is a patient on an operating table. We’re performing surgery to remove a malignant brain tumor, a complex procedure that normally requires a team of 15 surgeons and assistants…

More Detail on Ines Ramirez Perez’s Self-Caesarean

Wednesday, June 2nd, 2004

Several months ago there was a brief news report floating around, based on an item in a British medical journal, that described how a Mexican woman had performed an emergency Caesarean section on herself using a kitchen knife. I remember talking about it with some folks at the time, but apparently I failed to post it to Now an enterprising AP reporter has caught up with the woman, resulting in the following article: Woman describes self-Caesarean.


Eyeball Jewelry

Wednesday, April 7th, 2004

The newest fashion craze has been unleashed upon the world, starting in Rotterdam, The Netherlands: Eyeball Jewelry. Tiny pieces of specially made metal, in various shapes, can actually be surgicly implanted in the “interpalpebral conjunctiva” of a persons eyeball (the white part). Yahoo has photos of two different women who have had the proceedure done, and the Netherlands Institute for Innovative Ocular Surgery which is pioneering the procedure has a third picture. (I’m not sure if it’s one of the same women)

My challenge to the army: Find More Pictures. I mean, come on!, the Institue says they have made all different shapped implants, but all three pictures are of hearts — where/who are the other 4 people who have had this proceedure done?

Is that a vacuum cleaner in your gut, or are you just happy to see me?

Wednesday, January 21st, 2004

I’m not sure what to make of this, … the first thing that jumps out at me, is that calling it “X-Ray Vision” is missleading, since it claims she is “capable of distinguishing even the tiniest pathology on a molecular level … which sounds a lot less like the science-fictiony concept of “X-Ray Vision” and more like the Fantasy-ic concept of “Being in tune with the Universe, and every living organism”. But for what it’s worth: The Girl With X-Ray Vision

Smoke Free Movies

Sunday, October 12th, 2003

SmokeFreeMovies recently came to my attention when my girlfriend told me about a lecture (PPT) she’d just attended by Stan Glantz. Dr. Glantz is somewhat of an eccentric in the Public Health community and started the project on a lark, knowing that Big Tobaco has a history of working with major movie studios — but then he discovered that smoking in movies does significantly stimulate smoking in kids.

Personally, I thought the idea was a little goofy, but he presents some pretty interesting statistics (like: characters in movies smoke 300% as much as people in real life) and their goals are very modest, and seem completely reasonable to me. In particular, they’d like to see smoking given the same consideration as profanity and alcohol in determining if a movie should get an R Rating.

If nothing else, it’s interesting to see some of the Ads the organization has run in industry publications to promote their cause within the Hollywood system. (They are listed in reverse chronological order, so I suggested starting at the bottom and reading up). Of particular interest to me was the Ad they made after finding out about the letter writting campaign of a group of High School kids in New York who wrote 202,000 letters to various Hollywood big shots and got only two replies: one refusing delivery, and one from Julia Roberts’s people threatening legal action if they sent any more letters.

Well-Done CNN Parody Fools Idiot

Thursday, October 9th, 2003

I was six graphs deep in this before I realized I’d been had: Study: Fellatio may significantly decrease the risk of breast cancer in women. The tip-off? Quoting someone named “Dr. Inserta Shafteer”. Moral: Always check the URL. Design elements do not a CNN web page make.

Very Expensive, and Slightly Obscene, Plate

Thursday, September 18th, 2003

This isn’t really “medical science,” but that was the best I could come up with from the current list of categories. It’s a photo of a plate that is believed to have been made by Italian Renaissance ceramicist Francesco Urbini in the 16th century; apparently a British museum just paid 240,000 pounds for it. It depicts a man’s head made entirely of, um, well, penisis.

Which is pretty cool. But not as cool as the little fantasy I just played in my head, in which a sweet, grandmotherly woman brings it in to be appraised by the experts on Antiques Roadshow, and they have to decide whether or not they can air it.

It’s all fun and games, until someone gets hurt…

Sunday, September 14th, 2003

…then it’s just fun — er … wait a minute … acctually this doesn’t sound fun at all, this sounds seriously messed up: “A man was hospitalised with torn intestines after a friend, attempting a practical joke, pressed an air compressor to his…” Ouch.

Why People Cry

Wednesday, August 13th, 2003

Interesting article from the Financial Times, concerning when and why adults shed tears: The crying game.

Ted, you deserve better

Tuesday, August 12th, 2003

Sports Illustrated has not one, but two stories about the current conditions of Ted Williams’s cryogenically frozen remains. The New York TImes seems to have followed up the story, and has some more details.
What a wild, wacky, and sad sad state of affairs.

Woman Gives Birth on Train, Refuses Assistance

Saturday, August 2nd, 2003

Nurses are tough customers. The stuff they deal with just leaves very little room for squeamishness and other nonessentials. So maybe this shouldn’t be such a surprising story, but still, like, whoa: Refusing help, woman gives birth aboard T.

Body Integrity Identity Disorder

Sunday, July 27th, 2003

Interesting piece in Slate, from a few weeks ago, in which bioethicist Carl Elliott discusses an emerging mental disorder characterized by the desire to have one’s healthy limbs amputated: Costing an arm and a leg. Thanks to Flit for the link.

Hymen-Restoration Surgery

Friday, June 20th, 2003

I’m not going to comment on this, beyond posting the item. You get to assign your own meanings. From ABC News’ Lynn Sherr: Like a virgin. (Thanks to Aaron/Hiro for the link.)

Lose weight, the old fashion way

Thursday, May 15th, 2003

There are a lot of programs out there that claim you can “LOSE WEIGHT FAST!” But in these uncertain times, I think it’s best to stick with the reliable, proven diet recipies from Weight Watchers, circa 1974. My favorite is the “Slender Quencher” made from Water, Sherry extract, andBeef Bullion cubes. Mmmmmmmm that’s refreshing.

12 SARS Patients Report Relapses

Thursday, May 1st, 2003

Hello. This is my 1st post, so if there are any errors, please forgive me.

Definitly a year in history that will be remembered for a long time: a President of the USA who promotes peace by causing war(?), recession (but finds millions and billions to fight a war), and now SARS (an illness which, with all our technology, is still a myserty to us). In my travels through the world wide web, I came across intresting infomation about SARS, and how people who seem to have defeated the illness are being “re-infected.” Could this be the black plague of the 21st century? Only time will tell…

An article from New York Times: 12 SARS Patients Report Relapses. And here is an interesting article from Newsday: HIV/Aids Infected people resistent to SARS?

Here are a few more on other topics:

US Marine investigated for war crimes after newspaper interview

U.S. Tells Iraq Oil Ministers Not to Act Without Its O.K.

Coca-Cola promotes drink with ‘swastika’ robots

Lawyer: FBI agent’s job in jeopardy because she blew the whistle

The Secrets of September 11: The White House is battling to keep a report on the terror attacks secret. Does the 2004 election have anything to do with it?

(I am just glad the terrorists are the only ones who hate our freedom.)

Only on the net you find an article like this one… I won’t claim it as fact, but it still is an intresting article: Bush’s “Christian” Blood Cult, Concerns Raised by the Vatican

Well I hope it’s not too much infomation; if it is, please let me know and I will limit the amount of articles I post.

— best way to lie, is by knowing the truth

How fortunate for leaders, that the masses do not think.

Adolph Hitler

Where the People fear the Government – you have tyranny; Where the Government fears the People – you have rights.

Thomas Jefferson

It must never be unpatriotic to support your country against your government. It must always be unpatriotic to support your government against your country.

Stephen T. Byingt

It is the leaders of the country who determine the policy and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy, or a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the peacemakers for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country.

Reichsmarschall Hermann Goering

Good Politics, Bad Science

Wednesday, April 16th, 2003

From the Guardian comes this lengthy, but really informative, piece about how the Bush administration in particular, and the US religious right in general, has been making headway against those evil scientists who want to do unChristian things like teach children the theory of evolution, promote condom-use to fight AIDS, and find ways to use cloned embryonic stem cells to cure disease: The battle for American science. The latest technique, apparently, is to use stealth campaigns like the “Intelligent Design” movement, in which fringe science is portrayed as a viable contender against the more-established (but less popular with fundamentalists) theories favored by actual scientists.’s Handwashing Research

Sunday, April 13th, 2003

Some scary research into reported-vs.-actual handwashing behavior has been conducted by the American Society of Microbiology; you can check it out at http:/// In particular, see the Executive Summary:

  • There is a huge gap between self-reported handwashing behavior after using public restrooms and actual handwashing behavior – people are less likely to wash their hands after using public restrooms than they say they are. This is consistent with trend data collected four years ago.

    • More than nine in ten (95%) say they always wash their hands after using public restrooms. However, only slightly more than two-thirds (67%) are observed washing their hands after using public facilities.

  • Among males, nine in ten (92%) report that they always wash their hands after using public restrooms, but only 58% of those observed actually did. This represents a gap of 34%.

    • Interestingly, compared to actual handwashing behavior in 1996, men nowadays are significantly less likely to wash their hands after using public restrooms (58% actually washed their hands in Aug. 2000 vs. 61% in Aug. 1996).

  • Nearly all women (97%) surveyed report that they always wash their hands after using public restrooms, but only 75% observed actually did. This represents a gap of 22%.

  • Similar to 1996, women continue to be significantly more likely than men to say that they always wash their hands after using public facilities (97% vs. 92%).

Link courtesy of gnat’s journal at Use Perl.

SARS Discoverer Dies of Disease

Saturday, March 29th, 2003

From the Washington Post: Epidemic kills scientist who helped discover it. I think I’ve been trying not to learn anything about this epidemic, in part because I’ve got this nasty cough that won’t go away. I guess it’s slightly reassuring to think that if I had SARS, I’d be dead by now. Or I mean it would be reassuring, if it weren’t scary.

‘Performa’ Condom Makes a Splash

Thursday, October 17th, 2002

The mad scientists at Durex have come up with a sure-fire winner: a condom laced with Benzocaine that anesthetizes the tip of the wearer’s penis, prolonging sex. Though hitherto available only via the company’s web site, the chic sheaths are reportedly outselling the firm’s other offerings 5-to-1.