- The Facts:This article was written by Sayer Ji, Founder of Greenmedinfo LLC, where it originally appeared. Posted here with permission.
- Reflect On:While the conventional medical establishment calls for the removal of “broken” or “defective” body parts, a watershed study on the long-term effects of tonsillectomy and adenoid removal calls into question the propriety of this surgery.
If you were a child born in the U.S. from the 1950s through the 1970s, odds are high that either you or someone you know has undergone a tonsillectomy or adenoidectomy. I was one of those children. When I was in kindergarden, I had my adenoids removed. I was already suffering from severe bronchial asthma, requiring emergency treatment at the hospital several times a year, and somtimes as often as three times a month. The adenoid surgery was performed ostensibly to ‘relieve’ sinus obstruction. But following the procedure, my symptoms worsened. By the time I was sixteen I needed another sinus obstruction surgery, this time for sinus polyps and a deviated septum.
While instances have gone down in recent decades, tonsillectomies and adenoidectomies are still two of the most common surgeries performed on children worldwide. Since the first documented instances of tonsil and adenoid removal, the risks-versus-benefits of the procedures were questionable at best, but a recently released Danish study may have finally tipped the scales against this ‘standard of care.’
According to “A Brief History of Tonsillectomy,” the tonsils are lymphoid organs located at the entrance of the digestive and respiratory systems, the inflammation of which has led to three thousand years of documented extraction procedures. Tonsils are often removed in children when they become inflamed or infected—a common occurrence before puberty—despite being an instrument of immune system defense that can help the body ward-off other types of infection. More than half-a-million tonsillectomies are performed each year in the United States on children under the age of 15 years.
Indicated as a standard treatment for children with a variety of ear, nose, and throat complaints, it is an understatement to say that tonsillectomies are over-prescribed. Tonsils are frequently removed as a prophylactic measure to prevent recurrent infections, rather than as a last resort to restore health in rare and extreme cases. The same is true for adenoid removal. Doctors who blindly follow prevailing medical trends often fail to render fully informed consent to parents, who then lack an accurate understanding of both the risks and limitations of these “routine” surgeries. This unquestioning climate presents still-unknown risks to the long-term well-being of millions of kids around the globe.
A June 2018 study of over a million Danish children has added a compelling argument against tonsillectomies being performed so casually. In a first-ever study on the long-term effects of tonsillectomy, researchers from the University of Melbourne in Australia and the University of Copenhagen in Denmark, accessed the health records of 1.2 million children from the years 1979 to 1999. Of the total number of children studied, 11,830 had underwent tonsillectomy (removal of tonsils), 17,460 had an adenoidectomy (removal of adenoids, lymph glands located up and behind the tonsils which defend against infection), and 31, 377 had a combined procedure during which both tonsils and adenoids were removed. No other serious health issues were present among focus group children.
Data were analyzed from the twenty-year period beginning when the children were <15 years of age, spanning into their 30s, providing a range of data capable of indicating development of a variety of long-term health conditions. According to one of the lead authors of the study, Dr Sean Byars, “We calculated disease risks depending on whether adenoids, tonsils, or both were removed in the first 9 years of life because this is when these tissues are most active in the developing immune system.”
Published in the Journal of the American Medical Association Otolaryngology Head and Neck Surgery, results have compelled scientists to call for “renewed evaluation of alternatives” to this too-common procedure. The impact of tonsil and/or adenoid removal surgery on future health outcomes was deemed “considerable.” Children who had undergone tonsillectomies were found to have a nearly three-fold increase in the risk of developing certain diseases of the upper respiratory tract, including asthma, influenza, pneumonia, chronic bronchitis, and emphysema. Removal of adenoids in addition to tonsils more than quadrupled chances of developing allergies, inner-ear inflammation, and sinusitis.
While researchers admit that a tonsillectomy may aid in the short-term reduction of ENT (ear, nose, and throat) infections and their associated discomforts, observation of health trends over the long-term strongly suggest that these gains are short-lived, producing no long-term reductions in abnormal breathing, nor chronic sinusitis, two of the most common reasons for performing tonsillectomies.
Instead, risks for these problems were either significantly increased, or not significantly different than for children on whom no tonsillectomy or adenoidectomy were performed. Shockingly, unrelated health problems such as certain skin diseases, eye and parasitic infections, were 78% more prevalent in adults who had undergone one of these surgeries, as compared to adults who still had their tonsils.
Researchers postulate that these glands may form a protective barrier between invasive bacteria and viruses seeking to take hold in the sensitive and receptive tissues of the lungs and throat. The positioning of these glands may provide an important filtering function in this vital intersection where our breath collides with the detritus of the outside world. Considering the study found a sharp increase to risk factors for more than 28 diseases, do results indicate that these seemingly innocuous glands play a larger role in immune system functioning than has previously been credited?
It’s clear, according to Dr. Byers, that these findings support, at minimum, delaying tonsil and adenoid removal surgeries to allow for the complete development of a child’s immune system. It is also clear that prevailing medical wisdom needs to evolve beyond the viewpoint that our internal organs perform in isolation, and malfunctioning body parts can simply be removed without affecting the whole. “As we uncover more about the function of immune tissues and the lifelong consequences of their removal, especially during sensitive ages when the body is developing, this will hopefully help guide treatment decisions for parents and doctors.” Dr. Byers expressed. It is imperative that the medical establishment integrates new findings such as these with immediacy, so that another generation of young people don’t suffer due to rigid conformance with such misguided traditions.
As far as my own experience with adenoid removal at age six, I would go on to experience over a decade of non-stop recurrent asthma attacks requiring emergency intervention, and as I said, sinus surgery as a young adult to correct worsening obstruction in my sinus passages. Clearly my own personal experience with this procedure confirms what the study has discovered: the procedure, generally speaking, makes one’s health worse over time.
It is also worth noting that the conventional medical establishment routinely recommends organ removal as a ‘standard of care.’ For instance, in “Beware of Organ Removal for “Cancer Prevention”: Jolie’s Precautionary Tale,” I deconstruct the media’s portrayal of Jolie’s decision to have her breasts (and later ovaries) removed due to the perceived ‘death sentence’ incurred by being identified as a BRCA1/2 gene ‘mutation’ bearer. Her subsequent decision to have her breasts removed was not only considered advisable but heroic, as portrayed and amplifed globally by the mainstream media. Organs such as the thyroid, breast, and prostate, thanks to aggressive and misguided cancer screening programs, are being routinely removed from millions under threat of certain death by medical prognosticactors, who are unwitting, modern day equivalents of fortune-tellers and witch doctors; yet, many of these so-called “cancers” are actually benign lesions of epithelial origin, according to the National Cancer Institute itself.
I hope studies like reported on here contribute to countermanding this disturbing way of thinking about the body and disease risk and that the precautionary principle and the founding medical ethical principle of ‘do no harm’ be re-instated as supervening guidance in determining the ‘standard of care.’
To learn more about natural remedies for sore throat and throat infections, check out the abstracts in the GreenMedInfo research database.
Sayer Ji is founder of Greenmedinfo.com, a reviewer at the International Journal of Human Nutrition and Functional Medicine, Co-founder and CEO of Systome Biomed, Vice Chairman of the Board of the National Health Federation, Steering Committee Member of the Global Non-GMO Foundation.
The City of Oakland Votes to Ban Facial Recognition
On Tuesday night, the city council of Oakland, California voted to ban the municipal use of facial recognition technology within its borders.
That makes Oakland the third U.S. city to ban the high-tech surveillance tool and the second to do so in the Bay Area, according to CNET. San Francisco, California banned facial recognition in May and Somerville, Massachusetts followed suit in June. It’s a trend that shows that the people of Silicon Valley are increasingly uncomfortable with the creepy tech developed right in their own neighborhood.
Rebecca Kaplan, president of Oakland’s city council, argued that facial recognition technology was neither sophisticated enough nor properly regulated to be placed in the hands of police and other law enforcement agencies, per CNET. She also cited how the technology has been used to target minorities and other vulnerable populations.
Oakland police pushed back against the proposed ban, arguing for a watered-down version that would still allow some applications of the technology, according to CBS SF. But the city council went with the original, more restrictive version.
Technically, a final vote with the Oakland City Council is scheduled for September 17, but given how this first vote passed unanimously, it seems likely that the full ban will go into effect.
READ MORE: Facial recognition banned in another city [CNET]
The first photograph of quantum entanglement has been captured
One of the most enigmatic and fundamental phenomena of nature quantum entanglement has been portrayed for the first time.
The phenomenon was a headache for Albert Einstein himself, who characterized it as a “spooky action” because it violated the universe as we know it. It is called quantum entanglement and it happens when two particles separated from each other by a monstrous distance are able to communicate and interact without there being anything, no transmission channel, between the two. This means that if the state of one is altered, the other particle, perhaps millions of kilometers away, will respond in the same way.
Now, a team of physicists from the University of Glasgow has managed to obtain the first visual evidence of this puzzle of quantum mechanics. To do this they created a system that triggers a stream of interlaced photons from a quantum light source to non-conventional objects; which at the same time is reflected in liquid crystal materials that change phase when the photons pass through them.
“The image we have managed to capture is an elegant demonstration of a fundamental property of nature, observable for the first time in the form of an image,” explained Dr. Paul-Antoine Moreau, head of the research, in the published study.
“It’s an exciting result that could lead to new advances in the emerging field of quantum computing,” he concluded.
Tesla Announces Electric Pick-Up Truck That Will Cost Under $50,000
Billionaire genius Elon Musk has caught the world’s attention yet again, with a new announcement from Tesla. The electric car company will soon be releasing an electric pickup truck. Tesla CEO Elon Musk spoke about the forthcoming truck in a recent appearance for the “Ride the Lightning” Podcast.
“Will be a better truck than an F-150 in terms of truck-like functionality, and be a better sports car than a standard [Porsche] 911. That’s the aspiration,” Musk said.
The price is also far lower than what most people would expect from Tesla. Musk says that the starting price for the vehicle will be less than $50,000. The vehicle might even end up being cheaper than some F-150 models, considering that they can range anywhere from $28,000 to over $67,000.
Tesla’s new pick up truck will also be cheaper than the other electric truck that is set to appear on the market soon, the $69,000 pick up that is being released by Rivian next year.
“It just can’t be unaffordable,” Musk says.
According to Tesla, the new pickup truck will be similar to the Ford F-150, which is the country’s top rated truck and one of the best selling vehicles in the country for decades. As usual, Musk’s critics believe that he is trying to accomplish the impossible, and even supporters of Tesla are still skeptical.
Brett Smith, the director of propulsion technologies and energy infrastructure at the Center for Automotive Research, told CNBC that it “will be very challenging,” for Musk to meet all of his goals in this project.
“I have no doubt that they can build a pickup truck that has much better handling than the current F-150,” Smith says. However, he also cautions that “You’re never going to get a vehicle that can do everything well.”
Smith and other experts fear that the truck may fall short in its ability to handle off road driving and heavy cargo hauls as well as a traditional pick up truck would, especially with the high performance sports car capabilities of a Porsche 911.
“The physics don’t work there… But can it be a really great-performing, road-driving vehicle? Sure,” Smith said.
“Tesla has proven time and time again that they can do some really great things with products, and they’ve proven again that it can be hard to deliver on some things. So, I think what he said was a good benchmark to shoot for, [but] the reality is probably going to be much different,” he added.
Tesla also has a semi-truck on the way as well. The company expects that the truck will have a 500 mile (805 km) range on a full charge. These vehicles are expected to have a price range of anywhere between $150,000 and $180,000.
On March 7, 2018, Musk announced that the Semi was being tested with real cargo, hauling battery packs from Nevada to California.
The first pre-orders came in the day of the press conference and in the Tesla earnings call for the first quarter of 2018, Musk said that there were about 2,000 total pre-orders of the Semi.
As with the recent pick up truck reveal, critics of the semi truck argued that it would be extremely difficult, if not impossible for an electric vehicle to handle the kind of long haling of heavy materials that traditional semi trucks can. However, Musk has surprised his critics before, and it seems like these products are very close to reaching the market.
Numerous other companies are also developing electric trucks that will be competing with Tesla for market share. These companies include BYD Company, Cummins, Daimler AG, Einride, Kenworth, Nikola Motor, Proterra, Inc., Xos Trucks, VDL, Daf trucks, Toyota, Uber, and Volkswagen.
Last year, Musk posted a series of Tweets pointing out how media organizations have an obvious incentive to give bad press to electric cars and alternative energy in general.
Musk was unforgiving towards the mainstream media in his epic Twitter rant, calling them hypocrites and saying that the public no longer trusts them. He said that he doesn’t advertise for Tesla, his electric car company, which means that he contributes no money to the media, who depend on advertising dollars to stay in business.
The holier-than-thou hypocrisy of big media companies who lay claim to the truth, but publish only enough to sugarcoat the lie, is why the public no longer respects them https://t.co/Ay2DwCOMkr
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) May 23, 2018
Problem is journos are under constant pressure to get max clicks & earn advertising dollars or get fired. Tricky situation, as Tesla doesn’t advertise, but fossil fuel companies & gas/diesel car companies are among world’s biggest advertisers.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) May 23, 2018
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