In my experience, doctors never prescribe anything to stimulate or accelerate actual healing. They only prescribe stuff for pain, and to kill the boojums that cause it, but all they’re really doing is removing the obstacles that stand between your natural healing mechanisms and your injury.
Is that accurate? Are there exceptions? Help me out here…
Here’s the experience I would have LIKED to have with the doctor:
“Well, Howard, it looks like you’ve separated your shoulder. I’m going to give you enough painkillers that you’ll sit down and do nothing for four days, but you HAVE TO TAKE THEM. That will prevent you from injuring yourself further, and you’ll be too stoned to be bored. I’m also going to give you a nutritional supplement that will ensure that your body has the necessary materials to quickly rebuild that shoulder of yours.”
Then the doctor would hand me some pieces of paper, I’d go to the pharmacy, and I’d come away with a rejuvenative, regenerative cocktail, and I’d understand why I needed each of the pieces.
I know, I know, there are lots of supplements out there. Off the shelf I could probably acquire steroids, ligament strengtheners, and protein isolates which would dramatically accelerate the process by which my useless shoulder is made useful. I’m also very nearly smart enough to figure out what to buy without the help of a doctor. Sure, some of it is snake-oil, and even the stuff that appears to work for everybody has very limited “scientific” support in the form of clinical trials, but hey… I could figure out what’s what on my own.
My question is why won’t doctors do that for me? Isn’t there money to be made there? Wouldn’t it make sense for an association of (for instance) doctors who specialize in physical therapy to get together with (for instance) a company that makes protein powders, and underwrite a formal study on using supplements to treat (for instance) separated shoulders?
No, the pharmaceutical companies don’t stand to make quetzlcoatillions of dollars selling non-patentable protein powders, but certainly your local pharmacy could make a buck or two. SOMEBODY out there (besides us miserable convalescents) stands to benefit from the formalization of prescription-strength “healing aids.”
I’m sure some of you will tell us how the modern medical establishment is little more than a conspiracy to keep natural healers on the lunatic fringe and make the megapharms and their stockholders fithily richer. I want answers that are a little more firmly grounded.
ps: I mixed up some glutamine and creatine this evening, and my shoulder started to burn about an hour later. It felt like the burn I get after a workout, not like an injury. It was “new” pain, and it fascinates me. And this evidence of the existence of a niche for prescribed supplements is not especially firmly grounded.