Donald Trump

The squeaky wheel often gets the grease but sometimes wheels get an impassioned champion - and that is just as good. That may have happened with Pompe disease when President Trump, addressing a joint session of Congress, highlighted the presence of 20-year old Notre Dame sophomore Megan Crowley, who is afflicted with it.

Pompe disease results from mutations in the GAA gene which result in the inability of the body to break down the complex sugar called glycogen. That resulting buildup, especially in muscles, prevents them from functioning normally.

It's an inherited disease and relatively rare. According to the National Institutes of Health, Pompe disease affects about 1 in 40,000...

In an all too common turn of events, former President George H. W. Bush and his wife Barbara were admitted to the same hospital for respiratory issues-- pneumonia and bronchitis, respectively. President Bush is reported to be in the ICU (aka intensive care unit) implying a more serious bout of disease than his wife who as per the latest announcement by spokesman, Jim McGrath, feels "1,000% better" as of the morning of January 19, 2017.  

As the nation gears up for today's inauguration of the 45th President Donald J. Trump of the United States, sadly, the Bushes will be unable to be in attendance. Wishing them the speediest of recoveries, they are clearly where they need to be and, hopefully, will return to good health expeditiously.  

Bush implied the state of his...

If Donald Trump's anti-vaccine tweets were not enough to make the scientific and medical community nervous about the future of vaccination in this country, there is now a new reason to be concerned. Very concerned. 

It is reported that Donald Trump met this week with Robert Kennedy Jr., a vaccine denier and one of the most outspoken proponents of the false claim that vaccines cause autism. At the core of RFK Jr.'s irrational and harmful platform is the use of the preservative thimerosal in vaccines. Just two years ago, he edited the book, "Thimerosal: Let the Science Speak: The Evidence Supporting the Immediate Removal of Mercury--a Known Neurotoxin--from...

This is clearly the week of me being triggered, given I am no fan of the “trigger warning.” Inside-the-box thinking triggers me. Putting arbitrary limitations on human potential triggers me. Labels that attempt to stifle innovation or possibility trigger me.

Dr. Ben Carson, former Republican presidential candidate and pediatric neurosurgeon, was nominated by President-elect Donald Trump to be Secretary of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).

Immediately, a firestorm of political pushback ensued.

The following is part of Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi’s statement regarding this decision:

“Dr. Ben Carson is a disconcerting and disturbingly unqualified choice to lead a department as complex and consequential as Housing and Urban Development. There is no...

Melania Trump and son Barron are to hold off on an immediate move into the White House.  According to The Wall Street Journal, President-elect Trump told reporters they would join him “very soon.  After he’s finished with school.”

And, the media onslaught began with imprecise headline clickbait aplenty.  

“Melania and Barron Trump won’t be moving to the White House” (The New York Post)… “Melania and Barron will move to D.C., eventually, but many Trump family questions remain” (NBC News)…”Melania and Barron Trump might not move to the White House” (Fortune)…  “Melania and Barron Trump will not move to the White House” (Daily Mail)

Regardless of your politics—when speaking of a ten year old child in the context of an...

And, so it begins.   With yesterday’s release by The Daily Mail of Anthony Weiner’s alleged entry into a rehab facility for the treatment of sex addiction, the media headlines ignited.

Then, Reuter’s.  With domino-like precision, the other outlets soon succumbed as well.

The never-ending speculation of what goes on in sex rehab and whether sex addiction is or isn’t a legitimate diagnosis continues today.  Along with publications of salacious specific texts that hit the internet.  

The incendiary match was lit. 

Whether you think it is a PR stunt.  A hail mary.  Well or poorly spun mea culpa.  An orchestrated play of crisis management teams — a la the popular television show Scandal.  In the grand scheme, all are red herrings.

In this instance...

Monday night marked the first debate of Secretary Hillary Clinton and businessman Donald Trump.  Though no fits of any kind - coughing or otherwise - were thrown, the two gave jabs as expected.  Mrs. Clinton stated, “You live in your own reality, Donald.”  Later, Mr. Trump asserted that while he has been campaigning she has been noticeably absent on the trail- “You have been at home.”    

She thwarted any attempted health discussion or resurrection of her recent pneumonia as a topic by responding “I think Donald Trump just criticized me for preparing for this debate… and I will prepare as President.”  His subsequent discourse included, “I have better judgement and much better temperament… I have a winning temperament…She doesn’t…She doesn’t have the stamina.”

And, though...

The first debate between businessman Donald Trump and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will take place at Hofstra University Hempstead, N.Y. this evening and it has gripped news media. Some wonder if Trump can switch from dealmaker to debater, while George Stephanopoulos, current Chief Political Correspondent for ABC News and former White House Communications Director for President Bill Clinton, said on ABC yesterday that Hillary Clinton simply can't have a coughing fit.

This is in reference to pundits (and even a few doctors) speculating about her health, a topic which I covered using evidence-based thinking here.

There are ways to ensure that Clinton won't cough - narcotics - but those are prescription medications and would unlikely be used during a debate, for...

With medical letters and the general health of the U.S. Presidential candidates being the big topic of discussion last week, we were all treated to analyses of issues like blood clots and BMI and other topics. Pundits on both sides suggested some concern about the medical fitness of the opposing candidate.

But, where did this interest in medical fitness come from? What's fit or unfit in 2016?  Basically, what would cause you, or the leadership of a major party, to declare a candidate not medically qualified to be President and not worthy of a vote?  

This answer is different for a physician.

Fitness is not as obvious as you might think. Doctors, me included, will automatically defer to the primary physician of a candidate as the final arbiter of medical health,...

There was much excitement on Twitter after it was announced that Hillary Clinton, Donald Trump and Jill Stein answered the questions posed by Science Debate 2016. (Gary Johnson has yet to respond.) But how seriously should we take their answers?

Perhaps more so than in any election in recent memory, the two mainstream candidates have shown a shocking willingness to abandon the truth at a moment's notice. Answers to simple questions change, sometimes in the matter of hours or even minutes, as if the candidates neither realized nor cared that video cameras and instant replay can expose their duplicitousness. The problem has become so acute that, in a...