Progress in medicine is occurring rapidly, but there are lengthy delays between the time a medical discovery is made and when it actually becomes available to the public. The purpose of this book is to bridge the information gap between the research, community and the practice of medicine.
In the last few years, the Life Extension Foundation has been seeking to establish a Life Extension Medical Center where the best medical care, based upon the latest scientific evidence, would be available to patients, without regard to the views of medical and political authorities. This book describes some of the innovative treatments that would be implemented at such a medical center.
While this book provides practical advice for those suffering from dif-ficult-to-treat diseases, the long-term objective of this work is to reform an obsolete healthcare system that hinders medical progress.
Among the reasons for the time lag in delivering medical advances are bureaucratic delays caused by the FDA and other government agencies; delays in publishing new findings in peer-reviewed journals; the excessive influence of the large pharmaceutical companies; excessive conservatism on the part of doctors, medical centers, and insurance companies; and lack of cooperation, creativity, and coordination among all the components of the medical system.
: Whatever the reasons, it is a fact that few patients, rich or poor, are provided with the best available health and medical care, and that many lives are impaired or lost because of the lack of availability of the latest medical advances. .
f - One problem with today’s system of disease treatment is that practicing physicians cannot keep up with the exponential growth of scientific knowledge. A common complaint directed at doctors is that they are not staying informed about the latest medical findings. The reality is that there are far too many new research findings about disease therapies ■ appearing in the scientific literature for doctors to keep up with them all.
Just look at a typical doctor’s schedule. His or her day begins early y with hospital rounds and/or supervised medical testing. The doctor then sees patients back-to-back during office hours and spends evening hours reviewing test results and making late-night hospital rounds. If the doc- ■ tor is lucky he or she will enjoy a night of uninterrupted sleep before : ■ embarking on the next hectic day. It is difficult to imagine how a doctor maintaining this kind of schedule can stay current with the hundreds of new scientific studies that appear every day, yet people still expect their doctors to master the latest advances in medicine.
:: At the Life Extension Foundation, we have long recognized the limitations of practicing medicine and have taken aggressive steps to assist Foundation members in obtaining access to the best medical therapies