The Things That a Wise Doctor Once Wrote: Revisiting Classic Medical Papers of the Past

Share

Introduction: A Wise Doctor Once Wrote

I’ve always liked doctors. They make people feel better, they take care of people, and they have all the answers. Doctors are fascinating and interesting to listen to, especially when they’re discussing their medical experience with a patient. So I was excited when my mom asked me if I wanted to go see a doctor because she would like to get some advice about my health. I usually like to say no to going to the doctor so I told her that I would rather go to a psychologist. Well, my mom got mad and said that I was being unfair (although she did actually ask me if I wanted to go to a psychologist). Then I suddenly realized that my mom wasn’t mad because I refused to go to the doctor, but because she wanted me to go and bring her with me. So, as a compromise, she told me that if I wanted, we could also look at a medical doctor. A medical doctor? What’s so special about medical doctors anyway? That’s when my mom told me the story of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, which you can read below.

a wise doctor once wrote
a wise doctor once wrote

How to Read and Understand Medical Journals Articles

I wanted to read medical journals because doctors have been reading them for years. I wanted to see if I could learn useful information from them also. First I tried to read one article from the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA). JAMA is published on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays. I read the article on Thursday. The title of the article was “Acetaminophen and its Toxicity.” The article was written by a doctor and his research assistant. The title of the article was not very compelling so I tried the next one on my list. JAMA also publishes many other articles for people to read about medicine and health. The article on this day was “A Prescription for Prevention.” This article was about an antibiotic used to treat infections in red blood cells, called erythromycin.
The JAMA articles consist of the title, which is the subject, a question-and-answer section,[paragraph break] and finally a summary. The titles were not that interesting. They were mostly medical terms I couldn’t understand, like “A Randomized Study of the Prognostic Value of 18F-FDG Uptake in Tumors Treated with Surgery or Irradiation” (February 19, 1989).

a wise doctor once wrote
a wise doctor once wrote

The Evolution of Scientific Publication

I wasn’t able to read the entire article because it was only 7 pages long, and each page had very small writing. I think that doctors are used to reading such small print (even though most other people aren’t). The first line of the title stated, “Acetaminophen and its Toxicity.” The article was written by a doctor at the Mayo Clinic. He also wrote that he had been reading medical journals for many years. I really enjoyed reading this article because it explained what acetaminophen is and how it can harm people.
Here are some of the main points:
Acetaminophen is a commonly used pain reliever and fever reducer. A lot of people take it on a regular basis, even though it can be harmful. The way acetaminophen works is by blocking the body’s ability to make chemicals that act as painkillers. Acetaminophen can harm people in several ways:
It can damage the liver when taken in large amounts or for many years.
It can cause allergic reactions (itching and hives) in some people.
Rarely, it can also cause severe allergic reactions (difficulty breathing, drop in blood pressure, and skin reactions).

a wise doctor once wrote
a wise doctor once wrote

A Brief History of Medical Journals

I liked reading about how medical journals came to be. In 1665 the first medical journal was written. It was entitled, “The Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society.” I don’t think many members of the royal society could read, so what good was it? I also learned that in 1752 in London, England another medical journal called “The Medical and Physical Journal” was issued. This is what began the medical journal publications that we have today. I also learned about “The London Medical Journal” and the first article in it was about diabetes. In the article, it said that “diabetes was a disease of the pancreas.” But, we now know that diabetes is a disease of the pancreas. In 1945 in London, England, a medical journal called “The Lancet” began. I think it is so exciting that medical journals still exist today and there are more, but they are all different from those first few journals.
Once upon a time there was a wonderful journal called “The Lancet.” It seemed to have many interesting things to say. A wise doctor once wrote an article in The Lancet and another wise doctor read it and wrote another article in The Lancet. But, then a third wise doctor read the two articles and disagreed with them. After that sad situation, the journal was no longer so wise. In fact, it wasn’t very wise at all!

a wise doctor once wrote
a wise doctor once wrote

Conclusion and Recommendations

I would recommend all students to read medical journals. They can be helpful to people who are trying to learn more about medicine. I also think it’s good for children because they will get interested in medicine and may want to become doctors. So from now on I will keep reading medical journals because they are very interesting.
The sky is blue

a wise doctor once wrote
a wise doctor once wrote