1 Peter 4:16-5:3; Encouragement for a suffering presence

Medical Ethicist Stanley Hauerwas in his book Suffering Presence writes, “medicine needs the church not to supply a foundation for its moral commitments, but rather as a resource of the habits and practices necessary to sustain the care of those in pain over the long haul” (p.81, Suffering Presence, University of Notre Dame Press 1986). …

Finding satisfaction in life?

Our societies today are in many ways more affluent than ever but so often even when we have all the necessities of life, meaning and joy and satisfaction seem even more elusive.  As these same societies become more competitive, abrasive and socially hostile, anger and defensive speech weigh down our spirits.  Enter the words of…

The science of Cannabis use

As the bellwether states of Colorado and California have led the nation to consider both medical and recreational use of marijuana, an understanding of it physiologic effects is important.  In the era of fake news, marijuana is touted as a panacea and anytime a devoted following promotes “cure-alls”, one needs to be cautious.  So many…

When Worlds Collide; Hiv, cloning, the CCR5 receptor and medical ethics

In our last blog post ( https://dduffee.wordpress.com/2018/11/25/hiv-the-search-for-a-cure-continues/ ) and previously ( https://dduffee.wordpress.com/2017/05/23/update-on-medical-genomics/ ) we described the role of the CCR5 white blood cell receptor and its relationship to the progression of HIV in an infected person as well as a genetic tool that had been used in other gene therapies (crispr-cas9 platform).  Now on the…

HIV; the search for a cure continues

Photo by Aaron Burden on Unsplash In a case report published February 2009 in The New England Journal  of Medicine, a patient with HIV and leukemia received a stem cell transplant from another person to treat the leukemia. This “other person” (aka an allogeneic stem cell transplant donor) had white blood cells missing a surface receptor called CCR5….

CS Lewis, transposition and my hope for heaven

Originally posted on The Living Word:
Photo by Lysander Yuen on UnsplashIn his essay, Transposition, CS Lewis writes of a “continuity problem” between the natural life and the spiritual life.  How much of the natural life forms our desire for the spiritual (what he calls reasoning from below, a reasoning which skeptics use to show the unreality of the spiritual…

Common concerns in Primary Care Medicine; Do I need a Shingles Shot?

The disease commonly called “Shingles” is caused by reactivation of a Herpes type virus (varicella or chicken pox) which we have all encountered and fought off as kids, but can lay dormant in an area of a peripheral nerve called the “dorsal root ganglion”.  For reasons that are not completely clear, the virus which sets…

The power of analogy; Wordsworth and Lewis

Any time I read William Wordsworth’s poetry or CS Lewis’ prose, I am struck by the strength of their ideas when supported by analogy.  Why is an “analogical” argument so powerful?  Put simply, analogy is “embodied meaning”.  Malcolm Guite puts it this way,”[abstract images] are not only…phenomena going on “out there”, but [can be] a…

Upcoming SDCIM speaking engagements

Join us if you can… If you are receiving a category of medicines called immune checkpoint inhibitors for advance cancer, there are certain side effects that you and your primary team should be aware of.  We will be speaking on these at the link above.  If you can’t attend, let me know and I can…

On Cannabis withdrawal and Buprenorphine…SDCIM enters the fray

As SDCIM has entered the fray of opioid addiction detox and cessation therapies with our buprenorphine protocol (see link:  https://www.sdcim.com/new-page-2 ), the increasing awareness of cannabis side effects is also important to recognize.  So often we here about Cannabis as a panacea, but in this health news today article, we see that people can become habituated…