Medicine: When Bed Is Bad

A doctor should think twice before prescribing absolute quiet in bed—it may kill his patient. This astonishing thesis was the subject of a Cornell Medical College conference on therapy, reported last week in the New York State Journal of Medicine. Said outspoken Dr. William Dock, Cornell pathology professor, leading off the discussion: "Absolute bed rest kills more patients than anesthesia and all the drugs in the pharmacopoeia added together." Yet doctors prescribe it and medical texts give no warning of its dangers.

The trouble with bed rest, observed the Cornell savants, is that man...

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