Author Archives: Stephen Propatier

About Stephen Propatier

Stephen Propatier is a board certified acute care nurse practitioner who specializes in spine and sports medicine. He is a member of the Society for Science Based Medicine. He is adjunct faculty for both Brown University Warren Alpert Medical School and Rhode Island College Graduate School of Nursing.

Susan Gerbic: Vampire Slayer

Susan Gerbic at The Committee for Skeptical Inquiry has put out the call for all vampire slayers. Does this mean that we should all stock up on garlic, holy water and get some really high collars for our shirts? No, … Continue reading

Posted in New Age, Paranormal, TV & Media | Tagged , , , , | 6 Comments

Shortening Your Cold

The holidays can bring joy to individuals. Unfortunately joy is not the only thing brought into your home on the holidays: getting together with family and friends is also a big part of spreading the cold virus. The common cold is actually a … Continue reading

Posted in Alternative Medicine, Consumer Ripoffs, Health, Pseudoscience | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 43 Comments

Pop Culture Medical Mistakes

As someone who works in medicine I find it difficult to be entertained by medical entertainments. From Grey’s Anatomy to Robin Cook’s novels I cannot suspend disbelief and live in the stories. This is mostly because I avoid conflating my work … Continue reading

Posted in Science, Skeptoid Podcast | Tagged , , , , , | 50 Comments

FDA Smackdown on GMO Fear Mongering

In my estimation, genetically modified organisms (GMOs) incur fear mongering of the highest order, perhaps second only to vaccines, if at all. For reasons that escape me there has been a concerted effort to marginalize or outright stop the use and development … Continue reading

Posted in Conspiracy Theories, Pseudoscience, Science, Skeptoid Podcast | Tagged , , , , | 124 Comments

When I Lost My Respect for Tom Brady

In the US, American-style football is big, both as an entertainment medium, and as a business. Worldwide, people are aware of the sport’s premier contest, the Super Bowl, even if they don’t watch it. Last year the New England Patriots won … Continue reading

Posted in Alternative Medicine, Conspiracy Theories, Consumer Ripoffs, Health, Pseudoscience, TV & Media | Tagged , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

Beware the Squatty Potty

The Squatty Potty is an invention by Robert Edwards; its express purpose to to improve the quality and ease of your bowel movements while on the toilet. It has a catchy name and is sold everywhere from Target to Amazon.com. … Continue reading

Posted in Alternative Medicine, Health, Pseudoscience, Science, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , | 78 Comments

Is Alkaline Water the Next Great Miracle Cure?

In late August, Good Morning America ran a story about the health benefits of alkaline water. The story claims a multitude health benefits from drinking water that has an alkaline pH. Alkaline water is slightly less acidic than tap water, and remarkable effects have been … Continue reading

Posted in Health, Pseudoscience, Science, TV & Media | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 18 Comments

Can Your DNA Tell You Your Ancestry?

For those of us living in the United States there’s a cottage industry for ancestry determination. For a fee, websites like ancestry.com or familytree.com claim to research your family history. I have long been fascinated by these advertisements. I always thought … Continue reading

Posted in Consumer Ripoffs, Science | Tagged , , , , | 34 Comments

Robert F. Kennedy, Jr, Vaccines, and Mercury

I recently received a copy of Robert Fitzgerald Kennedy, Junior’s new book, titled Thimerosal: Let the Science Speak (Skyhorse Publishing, 2015), which is dramatically subtitled The evidence supporting the immediate removal of mercury—a known neurotoxin—from vaccines. My first impression was one of … Continue reading

Posted in Alternative Medicine, Conspiracy Theories, Health, Pseudoscience | Tagged , , , , | 11 Comments

Does the Sitting-Rising Test Predict Your Risk for Dying?

According to a 2012 study published in the European Journal of Cardiology, the ability to stand up from the floor is a good predictor of five-year mortality. I see this research commonly used as a medical foundation for the reported life-prolonging benefits of many strength … Continue reading

Posted in Health, Science | Tagged , , , , , , | 8 Comments