In the era we are living through right now, I feel it’s more important than ever to bring you topical conversations based in science, and that’s what we are doing today, and will be continuing to do in the coming months. I have been frustrated by the spread of unsubstantiated information being spread all across the internet about the pandemic.
On the one hand, it’s important to recognize that when we’re dealing with a very new or rapidly changing phenomenon, like we have been with the pandemic, even the “scientific consensus” can easily be wrong because there’s not been much time for the rigorous replicability studies to be conducted or even sometimes to accurately measure the proper effect sizes. However, I also believe it’s important that we don’t create a false equivalency between very fringe ideas that are unsupported by the current evidence base and a scientific consensus that is grounded in rigorous methodology.
This is why I sought out the counsel of Dr. Eric Topol on today’s show. In addition to being one of the top 10 most cited researchers in medicine and being extremely well regarded in his field of cardiology, he’s also been a bright light on social media, shining a light on the best available evidence in the pandemic. He thoughtfully considered all my questions and was very careful to make clear what the current evidence base says without ruling out alternative possibilities in the future in light of new evidence.
In this episode, we cover a number of hot button issues surrounding the pandemic including the potential use of ivermectin to end the pandemic and the potential for increased risk of myocarditis among certain populations after vaccination. We even discuss the role human psychology and human behavior have played in this pandemic. Ultimately, Dr. Topol is optimistic about the future of the pandemic and outlines things coming down the horizon that should give us hope. But as we discussed, the major problems tend to be human problems.
Eric Topol is a cardiologist, scientist, and author. He is the Founder and Director of the Scripps Research Translational Institute, Professor of Molecular Medicine, and Executive Vice-President of Scripps Research.
As a researcher, he has published over 1200 peer-reviewed articles, with more than 290,000 citations, elected to the National Academy of Medicine, and is one of the top 10 most cited researchers in medicine. Dr. Topol has been voted as the #1 most Influential physician leader in the United States in a national poll conducted by Modern Healthcare. Besides editing several textbooks, he has published 3 bestseller books on the future of medicine: The Creative Destruction of Medicine, The Patient Will See You Now, and Deep Medicine: How Artificial Intelligence Can Make Healthcare Human Again.
- What is Emergency Use Authorization (EUA)?
- COVID-19 vaccines are humanity’s greatest medical achievement
- Infection acquired immunity
- Vaccine and COVID induced myocarditis
- The efficacy of booster shots
- Ivermectin studies: what does the data say?
- How to improve pandemic response
- Hope for the future of the pandemic