‘The Universe Made a Hard Decision on My Behalf’: What We Heard This Week


“My disbelief was quickly replaced by relief and immense gratitude at being able to pursue my dreams on my own terms. In so many ways, the universe made a hard decision on my behalf.” — Travis Hughes, PhD, MPH, on the brighter side of not matching into residency.

“The hospital is not and should not be an extension of the carceral system.” — Edwin Lindo, JD, of the University of Washington School of Medicine, on doctors taking side jobs in law enforcement.

“Over the course of multiple visits, [my doctor] tried to convince me that COVID-19 vaccines weren’t safe and weren’t worth it. It made me question whether this was a one-off, or if we have an actual issue on our hands.” — Timothy Callaghan, PhD, of Texas A&M School of Public Health, on a survey he and colleagues conducted that found 10% of primary care physicians don’t believe vaccines are safe.

“The nerve damage may be the main reason why smell is lost.” — Cheng-Ying Ho, MD, PhD, of Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, about new findings of nerve damage in the olfactory bulb of people with COVID-19.

“A one-size-fits-all approach to treating and preventing Alzheimer’s is unlikely to be as effective as identifying particular risk profiles of patients who may benefit from specific drugs.” — Madhav Thambisetty, MD, PhD, of NIH, about research showing tumor necrosis factor inhibitors for rheumatoid arthritis were linked with a lower risk of Alzheimer’s, but only in people with cardiovascular disease.

“I never order them.” — Suzanne Jan De Beur, MD, of Johns Hopkins, on an increasingly used alternative bone mineral density screen known as quantitative CT that is more expensive, potentially less accurate, and delivers far more radiation than the gold-standard, dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry.

“Rising costs, coupled with increasing restrictions, really are putting abortion care out of reach for many people.” — Ushma Upadhyay, PhD, MPH, of the University of California San Francisco, speaking about her research on the rising cost of early abortions.

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