Special Correspondent

Expert cautions against routine checking of healthy

“Effects of modern medicine on body are non-linear”

CHENNAI: Medical science will not be able to address the concerns of the needy, unless the current tendencies to over-diagnose and over-investigate are checked, according to Professor B. M. Hegde.

At a special lecture organised by Voluntary Health Services Diabetes Department here on Wednesday, he cautioned against routine checking of the healthy and said observational research and the simple task of listening to the patient could yield significant results.

Citing several studies in the U.S. and the U.K., he argued that because the effects of modern medicine on the body were non-linear, there were multiple parameters that could be affected by intervention to rectify a single apparently irregular parameter. Therefore, intervention should be avoided unless there was a clear-cut case for treatment.

Professor Hegde, who is chairman, State Health Society Expert Committee, Bihar, Visiting Professor of Cardiology, Middlesex Hospital Medical School, Affiliated Professor of Human Health, Northern Colorado University, and Visiting Professor of the Indian Institute of Advanced Sciences, Shimla, was speaking on “Medical science and research: past, present and future.”

He advocated lifestyle changes that reduced stress, removed negative mindsets and promoted healthy living such as those well known in the holistic treatments of Ayurveda and yoga.

These provided the practical essentials for a long, healthy life. The lecture was part of a series made possible through the endowments of Dr K. Venkatasubramanian, Kalvivallal T. Kasalingam and A. Balasubramanian.