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Evolutionary impacts of modern medicine (My own theorizing)

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#1
JohnSchroeder

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I've been thinking about this for a while, and I have come the the conclusion that medicine and technology in general might actually harm the human race in the long run.  So many diseases and conditions that would have once been fatal are now either curable or treatable.  Type 1 diabetes is a prime example.

 

What once would have ended the genetic line of individuals with a fatal flaw in their genes, now gets passed onto children who have a greater chance of being T1 diabetics themselves.  Over time you would theorize that rates of T1 diabetes should increase if for no other reason than the fact that more adults are living with T1 and having children (and they are). 

 

I'm sure there are many other conditions that historically would have decreased an individuals chances of bearing offspring that have since been overcome.  Something as simple as the invention of glasses has probably made the average vision of people today much worse than say 1,000 years ago.

 

Is there a (morally acceptable) long term solution to this?  Maybe genetically identifying and changing the specific genes that hereditary conditions is the best hope?


Bolus: Humalog Pen 8-12 units

Basal: Tresiba U200 24 units

March 2016: 6.2

June 2016: 5.9

October 2016: 6.6  Yuck! time to pay better attention

January 2017 6.0


#2
NoraWI

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Oh, sure, there IS a simple solution. Hitler came up with it. :(
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#3
JohnSchroeder

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Yeah.. that's why I included the 'morally acceptable' caveat.  And technically Hitler wasn't too worried about genetics as it relates to the overall health of homo sapiens.


Bolus: Humalog Pen 8-12 units

Basal: Tresiba U200 24 units

March 2016: 6.2

June 2016: 5.9

October 2016: 6.6  Yuck! time to pay better attention

January 2017 6.0


#4
TX_Clint

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Although I haven't seen any evidence that mankind's existence goes through a cycle, I believe it will much as civilizations do. Man will continue to live longer and longer and the world population will continue to grow until it can no longer be supported by available resources. Through wars for those resources and starvation of many some people will survive and begin a much lower level of existence.

 

civilization-life-cycle.gif


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DX - 08/1997 - A1c 10.4
Metformin 500x4
Jardiance 25
Levothroxine 137
Welchol 3.75
2012 A1c 10.4/6.2/5.7
2013 A1c 5.9/5.5/5.3/5.4
2014 A1c 5.5/5.4/5.8/6.1
2015 A1c 6.1,6.2,5.9
2016 A1c 5.9,5.8,5.6

2017 A1c 5.9,6.1


#5
JohnSchroeder

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Classic Malthusian argument there Clint


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Bolus: Humalog Pen 8-12 units

Basal: Tresiba U200 24 units

March 2016: 6.2

June 2016: 5.9

October 2016: 6.6  Yuck! time to pay better attention

January 2017 6.0


#6
JohnSchroeder

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Oh, sure, there IS a simple solution. Hitler came up with it. :(

 

NoraWI, you sprung Hitler WAY too fast in this thread. 

 

https://en.wikipedia...ki/Godwin's_law

 

I mean, that's like picking a blind date up at her house and kissing her when she opens the door.  Too fast!


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Bolus: Humalog Pen 8-12 units

Basal: Tresiba U200 24 units

March 2016: 6.2

June 2016: 5.9

October 2016: 6.6  Yuck! time to pay better attention

January 2017 6.0


#7
OldTech

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Although I haven't seen any evidence that mankind's existence goes through a cycle, I believe it will much as civilizations do. Man will continue to live longer and longer and the world population will continue to grow until it can no longer be supported by available resources. Through wars for those resources and starvation of many some people will survive and begin a much lower level of existence.

 

I have believed this most of my life (since the 1970s Club of Rome report), but I now doubt it. We have been forecasting doomsday over and over based on logic that assumes no intelligent adaptive response. As one example, people argued that we were facing peak oil and that with the decline in oil production doomsday is inevitable. In the 70s that date was in the 90s and in the 00s that date was 2005. Then came fracking and now we are again awash with oil and gas and peak oil is no longer in sight.

 

Our ability to forecast detail in dynamic chaotic systems is all but nil, just like our ability for forecast weather out more than two weeks. Logic, computers, math, statistics, fractals, chaos theory, artificial intelligence, and models all fail us. And I have spent a good deal of time trying to do so during my career.


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--Chet

 

Type 2. Diagnosed 12/2013. Last A1c 4.5. Average postprandial 86. Very little variability. Very low carb and metformin (2x500mg). Two meals a day with no snacks. Last updated 2/18/2015.


#8
JohnSchroeder

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I have believed this most of my life (since the 1970s Club of Rome report), but I now doubt it. We have been forecasting doomsday over and over based on logic that assumes no intelligent adaptive response. As one example, people argued that we were facing peak oil and that with the decline in oil production doomsday is inevitable. In the 70s that date was in the 90s and in the 00s that date was 2005. Then came fracking and now we are again awash with oil and gas and peak oil is no longer in sight.

 

Our ability to forecast detail in dynamic chaotic systems is all but nil, just like our ability for forecast weather out more than two weeks. Logic, computers, math, statistics, fractals, chaos theory, artificial intelligence, and models all fail us. And I have spent a good deal of time trying to do so during my career.

 

Refrigeration, preservatives, railroads, GPS controlled agriculture, antibiotics/growth hormones for livestock, genetically engineered crops... all things that have moved the goalposts further and further into the future.


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Bolus: Humalog Pen 8-12 units

Basal: Tresiba U200 24 units

March 2016: 6.2

June 2016: 5.9

October 2016: 6.6  Yuck! time to pay better attention

January 2017 6.0


#9
OneEye

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Good question.

 

I've been thinking about this for a while, and I have come the the conclusion that medicine and technology in general might actually harm the human race in the long run...Is there a (morally acceptable) long term solution to this?

 

Stuff that Sci-Fi movies are made of. The earth has survived 4.567 billion years of evolution with a few major natural extinctions. In 1962 we came "that" close to self-annihilation. The United States and Russia about to enter into their cute little game of MAD (Mutually Assured Destruction). As an Atheist, and from a "moralistic point", watching other men pray to God that wouldn't happen...I found myself hoping their prayers got answered. I was a Special Forces sergeant embedded deep in the Vietnam jungle then. Not exactly the place I wanted to live out the rest of my life.

 

I'm a big believer in the universal law of entropy. In other words...things start out in an order...and then go south. As you ask...is medicine good or has it become not good for us? As a premise...yes, medicine good. I mean, who wants to die from bad teeth or an infected toe. Nature's way is 'only the strong survive'. With 7+ billion people on the planet...I'd say medicine's been a large part of how that's come about. But...as you say...to what end. Are we 'strong' - or is our destiny to wind up nothing more than mutant weaklings dependent on big pharma to keep us alive?


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#10
NoraWI

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And we are now breaking out of our natural environment, ergo, Earth. Only when we spread out beyond our beloved birthplace will we be "mature" enough to build a true civilization based on more than the consumption of more of her resources. My fervent hope is that Earth can heal herself. Mankind is approaching the maximum numbers that she can sustain. Eventually, mankind will achieve immortality probably by growing replacement parts as needed, genetic alterations, etc.
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#11
Caravaggio

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Interesting question, especially to me as I'm rereading a Dystopian sci-fi novel.

 

A few possibilities:

 

1.  Mankind will continue to advance science to solve the medical and biological problems that may result from longevity.

2.  Mankind will self-destruct.

3.  With what I see as a rising fear of knowledge, facts, correct information, science and education (and I'm not just talking Daesh and their ilk), books, classrooms, libraries, and research labs will be burned; deadly diseases which we thought we've defeated will make a comeback, and new pathogens will develop or be developed; knowledge will be lost; and mankind will regress into the Dark Ages.  

 

I'm betting on no. 1.






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