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The Internet as medical diagnostic tool scores again!

By Michael Fumento

I was having extreme itching in my toes that I've never experienced before. I reconstructed the circumstances under which it arose, plugged them in, and out popped this. (See inset for a somewhat worse case than I have.)

Chilblains is a perfect fit. Hits me after I exercise, because that's when my feet suddenly go from nippy (I keep the temp down to save money) to very warm. (Mind you, had it proved to be an STD I wouldn't be blogging on it.)

Irritating as hell, but nobody dies from it. And I did save a $30 copay at the podiatrist plus the time to see him, and he wouldn't have been able to help me anyway.

On much more serious matters, I used the Internet to diagnose my wife's celiac disease after three different gastroenterologists failed to do so. And I found out why a friend was having double menses, after at least one OB/GYN had failed to diagnose her.

I suppose in the wrong hands the Internet can backfire and give you "Medical Student Syndrome," in which you become convinced you're dying from three different diseases. But I seem to be immune to that, if you'll pardon the expression.

February 25, 2010 09:38 AM  ·  Diseases (other than AIDS and cancer)  ·  Recent Posts