I am not a medical professional of any kind. My qualifications for writing a medical blog are as follows:
- A BA in Computational Biology, focusing on behavior, ecosystems, and math, that I haven’t used professionally since graduation in 2006.
- A father with a PhD in statistics.
- A series of mild-but-serious-but-compensated-for medical issues, which may or may not be interconnected.
- A library card.
So while I am not qualified to diagnose, cure, or prevent any disease, I am much better equipped than your average layman to investigate and evaluate medical research. In a perfect world, every MP would be better than me at this, for every possible problem. This just isn’t the case. My research has saved me where doctors have failed. And the best MPs, the ones I couldn’t replace with Dr. Internet? They love it when I do my own research, because it leads to me giving them more useful information that they can apply their superior knowledge to.
With that said, here are my goals for this blog:
- Provide specific information that creates a spark of recognition, so others can help themselves. While researching a particular sensory integration book I stumbled on to sensory integration sea turtle, which alerted me to the existence of weighted blankets, which have helped me more than anything in the original book. And the sea turtle doesn’t think thiomersal causes autism.
- Demonstrate good DIY medical research so others can better investigate their own issues.
- Practice medical research for medical research’s sake. I’m seriously considering pursuing a career as an Nurse Practitioner. If I love this doing this research, it’s useful warm up. If I hate it, that’s good to know before I spend $200,000 on making it my career.
- Help people evaluate their doctors. Is she right to ignore that mild symptom? Is that drug worth the side effects? I can’t tell you, and I mostly can’t even tell you what to ask, but it would make me really happy if something I said helped someone figure out the right question.