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Birds in the hand – we should be grateful

It troubles me that in the rush to develop and adopt new approaches and new treatments, time honoured wisdom is being brushed aside. To think of doctors becoming qualified without a good knowledge of the physical structure of the body, including the brain, makes me shudder: Shortcuts in the education of doctors would leave them ill-equipped for their work: Anatomy is a vital part of the medical curriculum | Medicine | The Guardian

I was so pleased with the preclinical teaching I received at Guy’s Hospital Medical School during the 1960s, that I had complaints from other students for singing (quietly to myself) at the pleasure which came for the neuroanatomy lectures from Dr Peter Williams. Chance to study more for a degree in anatomy took me to other London colleges and to meet world leaders in the fields of histology, embryology and palaeontology and more. All this has thrown light in clinical practice and research ever since. Please don’t lose it.

Out Online Dementia Conversation this month confirmed that everyone else is very aware of the lost sock phenomenon – but we also shared agreement that the time when caring family members feel confident and safe to take a holiday away from home, is a key marker in the progress of life when a loved one is living in a care home – It reflects mutual understanding and trust between family and professional carers, something quite wonderful.

We have again, dramatic and demanding headlines urging more money be spent on drug therapies. Maybe I am wrong, but I am not convinced.

Our Dementia Conversation visited again the despair and anger from family carers in response to the withdrawal of funding for social support and non-chemical treatments, so that more funds are being poured into biochemical research. We are not convinced this is a properly balance approach, and suspect the lure of financial gain: Experts urge health regulators to approve ‘turning point’ dementia drugs | Alzheimer's | The Guardian

There is much more certainty that support of poorer people, and the maintenance of active lives will reduce the incidence of dementia. And when it comes – we know that social and art-based therapies are most effective – much better than the pills: Remaining active, creative and communicative staves off dementia: Challenging brain in older age may reduce dementia risk, study finds | Dementia | The Guardian

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