The middle-aged man hobbled into my consulting room. "I need an anti-inflammatory shot, doc. I'm running the Comrades Marathon this weekend."
The other day I was called to the procedure room to see a patient; she was having palpitations and difficulty breathing. I asked her some questions, examined her, and did an ECG and blood tests.
Her symptoms, I discovered, were caused by a large intake of caffeine and nicotine and the stress of building renovations going wrong. I advised her to reduce or stop drinking coffee and smoking, and to look at how she can manage her situation better.
"Oh I can't give up coffee and cigarettes now," she objected. "I am far too stressed for that."
These examples of ordinary madness are not uncommon.
Every day, I see patients who make bad choices in the face of incontrovertible reason. The appeal to logic is frequently futile. Advise an exhausted workaholic to go on a holiday and …