Health + Medicine – Analysis and Comment

Television serial killer Dexter may be more of a psychopath than a sociopath due to his methodically delivered kills. Pimkie/Flickr

Psychopaths versus sociopaths: what is the difference?

Psychopaths and sociopaths have similar characteristics, lacking remorse or empathy for others. And they can both be violent, deceitful and manipulative. But what are the differences between the two?
Tension-type headaches feel like a dull or heavy, non-pulsating band of pain, usually on both sides of the head. RXAphotos/Flickr

Health Check: what causes headaches?

Nearly every second person in the world had a headache at least once in the past year. But these can feel very different, depending on which of the nearly 200 types of headache you have.
A group of oncologists have called on cancer patients to challenge the high prices charged by pharmaceutical companies for new cancer drugs. ep_jhu/Flickr

If we don’t talk about value, cancer drugs will become terminal for health systems

Hope, fear, and desperation, along with the unique characteristics of the cancer drug market, create a “perfect storm” that continues to drive up prices for cancer drugs.
The major impediment to realising the ideal of good general practice is that few patients understand it. Alex Proimos/Flickr

What you should expect from your GP

Australia spent $16 billion on GP-related health care in 2012-13. Given that our public health system means each of us is paying for health care through our taxes, what should we expect from doctors?
The difference between “real” time, measured by clocks, and our own sense of time can sometimes seem enormous. Seán Ó Domhnaill/Flickr

How did it get so late so soon? Why time flies as we get older

While few will dispute that a minute comprises 60 seconds, the perception of time can vary dramatically from person to person and from one situation to the next. Time can race, or it can drag.
Awareness campaigns encourage perfectionism and unwarranted personal responsibility for events over which new mums may have little control. Pablo Rogat

Fear-based health information makes new mothers anxious

Fear-based messages from practitioners and awareness campaigns encourage perfectionism and unwarranted personal responsibility for events over which new mums may have little control.
The issue came to a head last year when the federal budget ripped billions of dollars of hospital funding from the states. Shutterstock

Remind me again, what’s the problem with hospital funding?

State and territory leaders will meet in Sydney today to nut out solutions to health and education funding gaps. But what exactly is the problem they're hoping to address?
A diagnostic label such as borderline personality disorder, with its stigma and propensity to invalidate the person’s suffering, clearly has many negative impacts. madamepsychosis/Flickr

Borderline personality disorder is a hurtful label for real suffering – time we changed it

Diagnostic labels usually describe symptoms, attempt to answer the question of what is wrong, and lead to a treatment plan. But "borderline personality disorder" fails on all three counts.
Gagging clauses in contracts permit purchasers of research to modify, substantially delay, or prohibit the reporting of findings. stallio/Flickr

Governments shouldn’t be able to censor research results they don’t like

Government departments often commission research to help them understand and respond to policy issues. But they impose contract conditions that threaten to undermine the integrity of the work.
Usually I feel on edge during flight turbulence but recently I employed several techniques that helped to calm me down. Dawid Cedler

High anxiety: how I use mental exercises to ease my fear of flying

Many who suffer from anxiety tend to blame themselves for their "tricky" brains. Compassion-focused exercises can soothe horrible bouts of anxiety, as they did for me on a recent trip home from Bali.
Syphilis outbreaks tend to occur in marginalised populations where there is a lack of affordable, appropriate and culturally acceptable health care. yaruman5/Flickr

Northern Australia syphilis outbreak is about government neglect, not child abuse

The syphilis outbreak in Central Australia is not about child abuse. But it highlights the urgent need for investment in sexual health services for Aboriginal Australians living in remote areas.
Studies based on Mediterranean diet, combined with exercise, have proved groundbreaking in managing type 2 diabetes. from shutterstock.com

How the right diet can control diabetes and reduce its massive economic costs

For decades, a low fat and sugar free diet were key to controlling type 2 diabetes. Now, new data shows a diet high in protein and healthy fats has better outcomes for the disease.