Medicine

Do Jews think differently?

5 October 2019 9:00 am

Sixteen years into a stop-go production saga, I got a call from the director of The Song of Names with…

The snake-oil salesmen who prey on schizophrenics

22 June 2019 9:00 am

Schizophrenia is the psychiatric illness about which the most misconceptions abound. It’s not so much the ‘negative’ symptoms that cause…

David Cameron campaigning on the day before the June 2016 referendum (Getty)

Letters: Of course Brexit is David Cameron’s fault

13 April 2019 9:00 am

All Cameron’s fault Sir: In this time of febrile political speculation, there can have been few more arresting subject headings…

Arthritis, nerve pain and chronic fatigue: my life with Lyme disease

9 February 2019 9:00 am

Some medical experts claim that Lyme disease is worse than cancer. It’s not a competition, but I do know one…

A warning to those who argue that we live in a visual society

7 July 2018 9:00 am

‘Can one person really grasp the significance of what another person has been through?’ asks Dr Rita Charon in this…

Patients like being told they need an operation. It doesn’t mean they do

13 January 2018 9:00 am

In George Bernard Shaw’s play The Doctor’s Dilemma, written early last century, the knife-happy surgeon invents a nut-shaped abdominal organ,…

Man machine: Fritz Kahn’s ‘Der Mensch als Industrieplast’, 1926,which shows the body not so much as a sacred temple as as a churning and industrious factory

Vital signs

30 September 2017 9:00 am

Exhibit A. It is 1958 and you are barrelling down a dual carriageway; the 70 mph limit is still eight…

Playing Stalin for laughs

22 July 2017 9:00 am

Christopher Wilson’s new novel is much easier to enjoy than to categorise. And ‘enjoy’ is definitely the right word, even…

Warning: rationality could be bad for your health

21 May 2016 9:00 am

Almost every popular commercial product owes its success to two different qualities. First, it does the job it is ostensibly…

A deadly role reversal

6 February 2016 9:00 am

Who would you trust to take a blade to your brain? Medical schools and hospitals, arbiters of this outrageous intimacy,…

Jeremy Hunt is spoiling for a fight. He’s picked the wrong one

14 November 2015 9:00 am

It has long been rumoured that when Jeremy Hunt took over as Health Secretary, Cameron told him to do one…

The ME lobby is just a symptom of our stupidity about mental illness

7 November 2015 9:00 am

Do you ever wake up worried that you have tiny fibres growing beneath your skin, all along your spinal column?…

Make-up, chocolates, deodorant and sand: two weeks in cancer scares

29 October 2015 9:00 am

Killer facts The World Health Organisation added processed meats to its list of ‘known’ carcinogens. A few of the other…

One in ten British babies will soon be born via IVF. So why is it taboo?

10 October 2015 9:00 am

As a result of a ruptured appendix, I am infertile. The appendicitis was followed by gangrene and peritonitis, which permanently…

New mothers deserve something better than NCT classes

3 October 2015 8:00 am

When I was pregnant, nearly everyone who’d had children asked me and my husband whether we’d booked our antenatal course…

Hans Asperger at the Children’s Clinic of the University of Vienna Hospital c.1940

Did Hans Asperger save children from the Nazis — or sell them out?

12 September 2015 9:00 am

Steve Silberman’s stunning new book looks across history, back to Henry Cavendish, the 18th-century natural scientist who discovered hydrogen, Hugo…

Is medical screening bad for your health? Michael Mosley dons a pair of ‘dignity shorts’ to find out

15 August 2015 9:00 am

When the link between tobacco and lung cancer was first established in the early 1950s, one obvious question arose: should…

It’s amazing how many different subjects Sir Thomas Browne’s latest biographer doesn’t care about

20 June 2015 9:00 am

On the evening of 10 March 1804, Samuel Taylor Coleridge settled at a desk in an effort to articulate what…

Back to Bedlam: Patrick Skene Catling on the book that makes madness visible

4 April 2015 9:00 am

Madness is an ancient, evidently inscrutable mystery, often regarded with superstitious fear, yet can provide a refuge from reality. Sometimes,…

The real reason GPs are grumpy: the robots are coming for them

17 January 2015 9:00 am

There’s something wrong with the relationship between patients and their GPs. I’ve spent much of this winter in my local…

Why you have to listen to this year's Reith Lectures

6 December 2014 9:00 am

Each year the Reith Lectures come round as Radio 4’s annual assertion of intellectual authority, fulfilling the BBC’s original aspiration…

Perhaps the most formative years in our history were when ‘every second person suddenly died in agony — and no one knew why.’ Above, plague victims are blessed by a priest in the 14th-century ‘Omne Bonum’ by James le Palmer

Why the most important years in history were from 1347 to 1352

1 November 2014 9:00 am

A group of retired Somerset farmers were sitting about in the early 1960s, so Ian Mortimer’s story goes, debating which…

Meet the bloated, useless General Medical Council

18 October 2014 9:00 am

There was a time, not long ago, when British GPs provided the best home doctor service in the world. Patients…

Six rivals for the name Isis

30 August 2014 9:00 am

Not in their name The BBC decided to start calling the Islamic terror group Isis by the acronym IS instead.…

Rotherham has proved it again: social work just doesn't work

30 August 2014 9:00 am

In 1980, June Lait and I published Can Social Work Survive?, the first critique of British social work aimed at…