Sit back for six minutes or so and enjoy every line of Bohemian Polypharmacy – a parody of Queen’s classic, Bohemian Rhapsody. This time around, it’s a song all about polypharmacy – which is what we call it when we are taking more medicines than we need to. This is yet another brilliant gem from Canadian pharmacist and professor Dr. James McCormack, with lyric help from David Scotten and creative input from Pete McCormack. Great vocals are by local Victoria band Aivia members Liam Styles Chang (lead) and Shae Scotten (background).
Dr. James McCormack is half of the brains behind Therapeutics Education Collaboration (TEC), home of the highly entertaining (and educational) BS Medicine podcast (the BS stands for, of course, Best Science). His partner in crime is family physician Dr. Michael Allan. Here’s how they describe TEC:
“The best way to describe us is that we are the ‘mythbusters’ of drug therapy.”
“Put simply, our goal is to provide physicians, pharmacists, nurses, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, other health professionals and the public with current, evidence-based, practical and relevant information on rational drug therapy.
“Thanks to our listeners, we have become one of the most popular medical podcasts on the web. We try to keep the information provided in our podcasts practical and relevant so clinicians can incorporate this information into their day-to-day practice. Humour, because evidence can be really dull, plays an important role in all our presentations.”
Dr. McCormack adds this ‘Coles Notes’ approach to skeptical thinking for health care providers when considering prescription drugs:
UNTIL PROVEN OTHERWISE, I ASSUME THAT . . .
1) When I read a clinical trial, the conclusion is wrong;
2) When I review a patient’s medication history, the drugs and the dose they are taking is wrong;
3) When considering ordering a clinical test, the test is not needed;
4) When reviewing clinical practice guidelines, most recommendations are opinion-based, not based on data from well-designed randomized controlled trials, and do not apply to my patient’s values;
5) Finally, when a new drug comes out, it provides no advantages over what is already out there.
- When drugs that help turn into drugs that harm
- The New Therapeutics: 10 Commandments
- Take statin drugs “when diet and exercise are not enough”
- How to deal drugs: Big Pharma’s dirty little tricks
- Six not-so-simple steps toward protecting us from dangerous drugs