Herbert Nehrlich 2
Screening - Poem by Herbert Nehrlich 2
The other day my colleague Sam
brought up the subject mammogram.
Like apple pie and mother's love
it seems the word comes from above,
you need to screen for most disease
be it a slight asthmatic wheeze
or thirst and urination urges
and mood swings, headaches, sudden surges,
prevention makes a lot of sense
so do ignore the great expense.
I share Sam's skepticism, yes
we know, an educated guess
born in a smart physician's brain
will often show a rather plain
and logical way to proceed,
false positives abound, indeed
most screening causes further tests
and feathers the profession's nest.
Take prostate troubles, a small gland
which fits the palm of any hand,
it can enlarge and grow new cells
which means it squeezes and it swells,
it may constrict the tube that leads
from both the kidneys (and the seeds
that mix with some prostatic fluid
when he and she decide to do it) ,
become less motile due to lack
of sheer momentum from the sac
that makes the fishes on demand
and gets propellant from the gland.
Now speaking from experience
we know it makes so little sense
to blame a fault in the design
or too much sex and Spanish wine.
The books all state that any man
according to his maker's plan
will, given that he lives to tell
his grandkids of the fears of Hell
will get the scourge not meant to please
a man's companion when he pees.
It has been proven though, my man,
most males will live without a plan
and those who watch their P's and Q's
end up inside the same tight shoes
that squeeze the life from deep within
and give the Devil a big grin.
Now, see the doc and be assessed,
the finger up the bum (you guessed?)
and then the famous PSA
for which you normally do pay.
From there the road is paved with gold
for those who treat the docile old.
A biopsy is ordered now
and then the doctor lifts his brow:
'I recommend a TUR
your situation's gone too far,
you sign this paper to release
from your account some hefty fees.'
Thus, an example how our health
can be misused to transfer wealth.
Most men leave with this harmless pet
it's better here to play roulette.
But I digress, today I meant
to mention a predicament
that medicine has made from greed
and not because of dire need.
The breast, that soft and lovely part
of woman, what a piece of art,
such tender and exquisite skin
it is a travesty, a sin
to force them, nipples and the rest
into a mammograph to test
for little bumps that later might
cause great alarm yet may be slight
and harmless little fibrocysts
which, if the screening doctor twists
and turns the tissue just to see
may set a nasty spirit free.
They taught us all to use a touch
the lightest and not fret too much,
yet mammograms are rough and tough
which on occasion is enough
to trigger a malignancy
which guarantees a giant fee
for those who then go into action
with knowing frowns of satisfaction.
So, Sam and I agree of course
that one must hitch the Trojan horse
before the wagon so he will
pull all the cargo up the hill.
We do not say to close your eyes
and wait for an obscene surprise,
but why consent to what will cause
as proven by Mum Nature's laws
new cancers, even many more
that would have taken hold before.
A doctor with some common sense
compassion and much competence,
will palpate lumps the size of peas
with confidence and outright ease.
For those whose private history
includes a relative or three
who suffered from the cancer scourge
would need to plan their tests and merge
precaution with the paranoid
in order to perhaps avoid
a sudden premature demise.
But careful now, don't buy those lies
just ask to get a thermogram
that's all from me and Doctor Sam.
Mammograms cause more cancers than they detect.
Screening as a routine measure to 'prevent' most types of cancer is likely to be harmful and may potentially kill you. Be wise in your choice of doctor.
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