First Do…More Injections? The Money Behind The Medicine


Links to points discussed:

Institute of Medicine, Conflict of Interest, & their report  Relieving Pain in America, A Blueprint for Transforming Prevention, Care, Education, and Research.

The original Institute of Medicine report “Relieving Pain…” and it’s number of “100 million Americans” with chronic pain is widely quoted and the data is bad.  I pulled the original source material and found much of it based upon acute pain studies (post-surgical) and the data then extrapolated broadly.

Despite this…this number continues to be used.

Robert Cialdini’s book Influence:The Psychology of Persuasion and a youtube video he made specifically on Reciprocity

Everyone should read this book to understand how we are all being “influenced.”

Below are links to the New England Journal of Medicine research article and Editorial:

New England Journal of Medicine research article A Randomized Trial of Epidural Glucocorticoid Injections for Spinal Stenosis.

New England Journal of Medicine Editorial on Epidural Glucocorticoid Injections in Patients with Lumbar Spinal Stenosis

Pay attention to the headlines of these various media reports

We talked about how headlines can mislead us in Episode #10 “80% of People Will Just Read This Headline…But When You Listen You Will Learn Why That Can Hurt You.”

What do each of these headlines suggest to you?”

Reuters article reporting on the above Study finds little benefit, some harm from steroid shots for back pain

New York Times reporting on the above Common Back and Leg Treatment May Not Help Much, Study Says

HealthDay reporting on the above Steroid Shots May Not Help Back Pain





3 Simple Steps For Healthy Choices…Answering Another Listener Question.


SSHT_1In a world with too much information… where do you start?

Here’s a simple 3 step solution to figuring out how to make your healthy choices.

Some of what we talk about in today’s episode:

School of Fish (and a fascinating Wikipedia entry on shoaling & schooling fish behavior)

White Bears & Thought Suppression:  

And Finally… Command & Control & Locus of Control

Almost forgot!  Here’s the Video Link for the podcast on youtube. 

How Much Do We Need To Move? And Other Listener Questions…


I ask every person who subscribes at what their health fears or frustrations are.

SSHT_1I read every response.

Today’s episode was based on questions from Katrina and Curt.

Some of the studies and articles mentioned in the episode are below (all should be clickable links):

Sitting linked to certain cancers.

Sitting too much is as bad…

...and it can be as bad as smoking. 

Healthy towns walk and ride. 

If you want to live long and prosper… stay active.

Sick or in pain?  Then it’s even more important to move!

Just how powerful is Placebo?


Why Having An Annual Physical Could Be The Worst Decision You Make


SSHT_1Annual physicals are supposed to keep us “healthy” but do they really?

Here’s how what you think you’re supposed to do for your health may actually harm you.


The $50,000 Physical (JAMA)

Overscreening for Prostate Cancer

Overscreening for Colon Cancer

The Danger For Hunting For Cancer (Time article)

Overtreatment is Taking A Harmful Toll (NYT Wellness Blog)

And if Googling your health concerns isn’t enough anxiety for you… here’s a link to the Merck Manual:

The Merck Manual

Change Is Vital For Your Health…Here’s How To Do It


SSHT_1In 2014 it’s estimated the United States will spend $3,800,000,000,000 on healthcare.

That amount of money is greater than the GDP of Germany ($3.4 Trillion and also the world’s 4th largest economy).

Yet what do we get?

We’re 42nd in the world in life expectancy and our health outcomes are worse than most other countries–including less developed ones!

Why is this and why can you NOT wait for healthcare to be “fixed” before you take action?

In this episode we’ll talk about why hoping your doctor will help you change unhealthy lifestyle behaviors is like waiting for the Tooth Fairy.

We’ll also touch on a useful framework to change behavior.

This episode also has a video companion available on Youtube.

Why Work-Life Balance Doesn’t Work And What To Do Instead.


SSHT_1How often have you heard the term “Work-Life Balance”?  Or seen articles saying how “Work-Life Balance” is getting worse?




In today’s episode we talk about why the entire idea of Work-Life Balance is wrong and how trying to maintain it could worsen health… And what we should be focusing on instead.


3 Wise Choices When It Comes To Health


For today’s episode we talk about “Choosing Wisely” for health.SSHT_1

What is Choosing Wisely?

Well it’s a campaign created by the ABIM Foundation to “spark conversations between patients and providers.”

Does it work?  I’ve got my own opinion for another time…

Instead we’ll go over 3 recommendations:   One for back pain, another for colds & coughs and the last about whether or not you really should get that EKG…

When you get a chance visit the Choosing Wisely website.  I’d love to hear what you think.

Is it easy to understand?  Is it useful?  Does it help you out?

What would you do if you were trying to get people to “Choose Wisely” when it comes to their health?

The First Step To Getting Healthy



What is the First Step to getting healthy? Knowing this step is the KEY for good health…and a good life!

This episode is probably the most important episode I’ve done to date.

I also HIGHLY recommend reading Dr. Carol Dweck’s book!


Episode #19 5 Ways To Fight Off Stress


Stress is the topic of this episode of Straight Shot Health Talk.

What is it?  Why does it matter?  Why should it be your #1 health concern?

But that’s not all…

Stick around until the end for three key ideas about stress management…and five specific techniques to manage it effectively.

Straight Shot Health Talk

Episode #18 Will I Be Paralyzed By Having An Epidural For My Pregnancy?


Dr. Dave Draghinas from Anesthesia Myths returns and we discuss the top questions about epidurals for labor.

These are important for both people having babies… and their friends and families who may have LOTS of questions.

Do epidurals for labor cause paralysis?

Or back pain?

What about risks for c-section?

Here are the answers to these questions and more.

AND if you still want more information, Dr. Dave has a kindle book, “The Epidural Blueprint,” available on

Straight Shot Health Talk