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Health & Medical Links

Disclaimer | Consumer Health Information | Traditional Medicine | Organ Donation & Transplantation | Renal Sites
Hospital Sites | Nutritional Information | Alternative Medicine | Toxic Substances | Is Trust Justified? | About These Links

DISCLAIMER The links on this site is for informational purposes only. Do not use the information contained on this site for diagnosing or treating a health problem or disease, or prescribing any medication. The information on this web site is not intended to take the place of medical advice, treatment, evaluation or diagnosis by a qualified professional who is fully informed about the potential risks and adverse effects of such treatments.

A Starting Point

The links on this page are intended as a resource and starting point for self-help research. Be sure to check the information you find there with your health professional.

Discuss Findings With Your Health Team

Your body is your own and patients that take control of their own health often do better than those that depend on others for all the answers.

However, I suggest that you use the information you find there as a discussion point with your health team. They can explain the pros and cons of any particular course of treatment. An informed patient will listen to all the facts before making their mind up about the validity of any medical procedure.

External Links Open in a New Window

All links external to this site open in a new tab (or new window). Simply close the external site's tab or window to return to this page. I am not responsible for the content of websites that I provide links to. Read the disclaimer.

Consumer Health Information

Government Sponsored

  • HealthLinkBC gives online access to non-emergency health information and services from the Government of British Columbia.
  • Health Finder — sponsored by the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services.
  • Health Information — sponsored by the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services.

Drug Information

Information Portals

Note: a number of traditional portals are now sponsored by corporations or advertisers that may influence the information provided based upon their products and services.

  • Medscape — medical news and full-text journal articles.
  • MyOptumHealth — an information portal sponsored by UnitedHealth Group, a health care company.
  • HealthCentral is an online health company that provides information and support for people with life-changing conditions. SoHealth is the companion blog.

General Information & Guides

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Traditional Medical Resources

Government Sponsored

General Information & Guides

Medical News

Medical Journals

  • JAMAJournal of the American Medical Association.
  • CMAJCanadian Medical Association Journal.

The Human Body

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Organ Donation and Transplantation

Lif Life. Pass it On. Register today at transplant.bc.ca

The B.C. Organ Donor Registry replaces all previous forms of consent including a sticker or the words ORGAN DONOR stamped on your drivers license.

You can register online or download a printable form. If you've not sure, confirm your registration.

Canadian Transplant Resources

My Organ Donation & Transplantation page tells the story of my kidney transplant and contains a deeper look into the critical need for more than 20% of the BC population to be registered.

General Information & Guides

  • Donating a Kidney is an overview from HealthLink BC.
  • TransWeb is one of the oldest transplantation sites and includes excellent information and links.

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Renal Sites

General Information & Guides

Renal Facilities

Medical Journals

Related Diseases

  • Parathyroid.com has a series of parathyroid articles. Parathyroid issues can result from chronic renal failure.
  • Children with Diabetes is an excellent resource for diet, new technologies, and summer camps.

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Hospital Sites

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Nutritional Information

Journals & News

General Information & Guides

Sugar Alternatives

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Alternative Medicine

Herbs and Vitamins

General Information & Guides

Blood Issues

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Toxic Substances

Hazardous Chemicals

  • National Toxicology Program (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services).
  • TOXNET online databases on toxicology, hazardous chemicals, environmental health and toxic releases.
  • Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry tracks health effects of hazardous substances. This agency offers a searchable database of profiles of about 200 environmental contaminants, giving health effects and other information for the lay person. Also featured is a clickable map leading to locations where hazardous substances exist. The entire site is searchable using keywords and Boolean operators.
  • NLS Toxicology Bibliographic Information.

Pesticides

Pollution

  • Burning Issues provides public education about the health hazards of burning wood. There is a FAQ and links to studies on the effects of smoke and particulates, including legal cases.
  • Carbon Monoxide Headquarters is an "expert" site on the issue of carbon monoxide, which causes more deaths than any other poison in our environment.

Electromagnetic Energy

  • EMfacts Consultancy is an independent source of information on the possible health and safety issues arising from human exposure to Electromagnetic Energy (EME).

Chemical & Environmental Sensitivities

Occupational Safety

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www.russharvey.bc.ca/russ/medical.html
Updated: August 14, 2015

Health & medical

Is Trust Justified?

Health Canada Has Failed Us

Pharmaceutical companies get away with fraud including promoting off-label prescribing.

New diseases are invented that greatly increase profits while seldom providing any realistic improvement to patient quality of life.

When caught, these corporations face fines that are more a cost of doing business than the crippling fines these same companies insist that competing non-pharmaceutical companies face when promoting an “off-label” benefit.

This Has Eroded Trust

Doctors learn about new drugs from drug reps who have little incentive to tell about the downside. It's like going to a Ford dealership and asking if you should buy a Toyota.

Unfortunately, FDA and Health Canada priorities focus less on protecting consumers than on fast-tracking the approval of new drugs and medical devices.

The lack of effective oversight is harmful to patients. Adverse drug reactions — also known as side effects, adverse effects or iatrogenesis — are a leading cause of death in Canada and the United States. Doctors are overworked and few patients are even aware that a mechanism to report adverse reactions exists.

Although the committee was discouraged by frequent testimony regarding Health Canada's passive role in drug regulation, its lack of transparency in relaying safety information to the public, its inability to conduct adequate inspections at all phases of a drug's life-cycle and in some cases, the department's failure to provide this committee with reliable testimony, it hopes that the department shares its belief that Canada's drug regulatory regime should be second to none. — Prescription Pharmaceuticals in Canada: Final Report, March 2015

Statins and Cholesterol

Anti-cholesterol drugs are a $37 billion dollar industry. In addition, what is considered “high” cholesterol has been systematically lowered.

Benefits and Risks

Do they help?

The risk of heart disease drops from 2% to 1% when taking statins. 100 people have to take this expensive drug for 1 person to benefit.

What about the risks?

The harms of statins are less publicized than benefits, but are well documented.

The NNT Findings

The NNT (Number-Needed-to-Treat) for statins demonstrated poor benefits, particularly for those without prior heart disease, and significant risks:

Benefits for those with NO history of heart disease:

  • None were helped (life saved)
  • 1 in 104 were helped (preventing heart attack)
  • 1 in 154 were helped (preventing stroke)

Benefits for those with KNOWN heart disease:

  • 1 in 83 were helped (life saved)
  • 1 in 39 were helped (preventing non-fatal heart attack)
  • 1 in 125 were helped (preventing stroke)

Harms were the same for both groups:

  • 1 in 50 were harmed (develop diabetes)
  • 1 in 10 were harmed (muscle damage)

Crestor Benefit Overstated

One example of the lack of oversight is rosuvastatin (Crestor):

More is spent in the US on rosuvastatin than any other statin. Yet the evidence of its health benefits has always been weak and there is growing evidence of harmful side effects.
 
Given the evidence of more serious risks and less clinical benefit than other statins how has the drug fared so well for so long?
 
A prescient answer can be found in an October 2003 Lancet editorial, “The statin wars: why AstraZeneca must retreat.” It stated that AstraZeneca's chief executive, Tom McKillop, has pledged to do whatever it takes to persuade doctors to prescribe rosuvastatin, including launching an estimated $1 billion first-year promotional campaign. — Sidney Wolfe, BMJ

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About These Links

External Links Open in a New Window

All links external to this site open in a new tab (or new window). Simply close the external site's tab or window to return to this page.

I am not responsible for the content of websites that I provide links to. Read the disclaimer. See Links To Other Sites on the Conditions of Use page.

Suggesting Links

This page links to medical content that is suitable for lay persons, typically patients seeking information about health issues they or a family member are facing.

Guidelines

Please see these guidelines for linking to this site or suggesting a new resource.

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