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Dr. Bill's Commentaries

A gadfly who's my new hero

I think I have found a new hero. I stumbled across a recent thought-provoking article, The epidemic of pre-diabetes: the medicine and the politics and had to admit that the author presents some cogent (and sometimes biting) arguments against the value of the concept of pre-diabetes.

Then I looked around for more information on the lead author (John S Yudkin, MD, FRCP, Emeritus Professor of Medicine University College London), and found another interesting commentary: The drug industry is a barrier to diabetes care in poor countries

Why is he my new hero?

Well, first of all, Dr. Judkin is not some self-serving blogger on his own blog -- he's writing in the highly-respected and peer-reviewed British Medical Journal.

Second, his opinions are referenced by a long list of citations.

Third, he makes sense.

If you have the time and interest, I'd encourage you to read both essays. And to give you a bit of the flavor of them, here are some examples:

At The epidemic of pre-diabetes: the medicine and the politics:

"Current definitions [of pre-diabetes] risk unnecessary medicalisation and create unsustainable burdens for healthcare systems." As an example, he points out a study in China which used ADA criteria for pre-diabetes, came up with the results that 50.1% of Chinese adults have pre-diabetes. (OMG!)

At The drug industry is a barrier to diabetes care in poor countries:

"I argue that the approaches to management that are so heavily advocated by the research based drug industry are not just irrelevant to diabetes care in low income countries, but are actually counterproductive."

BTW, I found a biosketch for Professor Yudkin at the University College London website.

He's clearly a gadfly ("an annoying person, especially one who provokes others into action by criticism"). And he's my new hero.

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Dr. Bill Quick began writing at HealthCentral's diabetes website in November, 2006. These essays are reproduced at D-is-for-Diabetes with the permission of HealthCentral.

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This page was new at D-is-for-Diabetes December 15, 2015

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