All posts tagged Medicine

This computer simulated image was created using software called the ‘TREES toolbox’, which allows scientists to generate neuronal structures indistinguishable from those found in the real biological brain. This image shows synthetic neurons that represent the optimized size, shape and connectivity of pyramidal neurons analogous to those found in the cortex of the brain. Pyramidal neurons are so-called because they have a pyramid- shaped cell body (soma), they are also characterized by long branching dendrites. They are found in the forebrain (cortex and hippocampus) of mammals and are thought to be involved in cognitive function. Each neuron is assigned a different colour so that individual structures and processes can be easily distinguished. These highly accurate synthetic neurons have the added advantage of being manipulated and viewed in a number of different ways, helping scientists learn more about cell shape and how neurons are constructed. 2011 Wellcome Image Award winner.

The SCAR Project is a series of large-scale portraits of young breast cancer survivors shot by fashion photographer David Jay. Primarily an awareness raising campaign, The SCAR Project puts a raw, unflinching face on early onset breast cancer while paying tribute to the courage and spirit of so many brave young women.”

This moving and poignant collection will be on exhibit in Washington, DC. October 1 – October 7, 2012 and in Los Angeles, Ca. January 26 – February 3rd, 2013. Click for additional information.

From the page: “More than half of adult Americans report they have had a spiritual experience that changed their lives. Now, scientists from universities like Harvard, Pennsylvania and Johns Hopkins are using new technologies to analyze the brains of people who claim they have touched the spiritual — from Christians who speak in tongues to Buddhist monks to people who claim to have had near-death experiences. Hear what they have discovered in this controversial field, as the science of spirituality continues to evolve.”
via NPR

…but won’t be getting jail time for it – via The Friendly Atheist

Truly appalling. Another case where faith-healing prayer failed a child where medicine could have saved its life. Doesn’t it seem as though (if he existed) God would use instances like these to prove his miraculous power? If mountains can be moved with a little faith, just the size of a mustard seed, tell me, why can’t an appendix be healed through the prayer and intense faith of these two individuals and their son?

I get so sick of asking these rhetorical questions. Of course faith cannot move mountains or heal a ruptured appendix, and of course these parents should have sought medical advice immediately! The laws protecting these inhumane religious practices need to be abolished. People who would sit and do nothing while their loved ones – or ANYONE for that matter – die suffering need to pay real life consequences.

Go ahead, apologetics, let me hear you say it. God must have a plan for them. God must not have wanted this boy to live, otherwise, he would have healed him and let him live. Yeah, you and I both know that line of bullshit doesn’t hold up under scrutiny. Perhaps the clearest argument lies in the modern advancement of medical science despite the majority of the population claiming to believe in a healing, all-powerful, miraculous god.

Think about it next time you pray.

And maybe you’ll think about it next time you visit a trained physician… are you admitting that you are more apt to trust medical science to prolong your life, even if it contradicts God’s ultimate plan for your health, life and/or death — isn’t that like saying the will of God deserves a second opinion? It’s maddening to know that the only reason this kid didn’t have that as an option was because his parents – the people he trusted to protect and direct him – put his life in the hands of an imaginary friend. This might sound calloused, but I wonder if their faith in God’s plan and the concept that their son is “in a better place” are strong enough to comfort them in their time of grieving.

From the page:

“Ultimately, the claim that a fertilized egg is a person is an insult to rationality and morality. It is irrational to the point of absurdity to grant a microscopic clump of cells, a fertilized egg, the same legal and moral status as an actual person living and breathing in the world.”

via National Humanist |

Further reading: Doctors call Mississippi “personhood” initiative dangerous

Please help my friend raise $1000 for The American Lung Association. If she reaches her goal (she’s SO close) she has promised to climb Salt Lake City’s Wells Fargo building wearing a coconut bra and a grass hula skirt! Even the smallest donation helps a good cause.