First Opinion

A psychiatrist diagnosed with cancer is beginning to view death as "the most peaceful sleep." A "nudge" expert describes ways to help doctors provide the same high-quality care all day long. Two diet researchers explore "tribalism" around low-carb high-fat diets. And those are just a few of this week's First Opinions. Read on for the rest. Have an idea for First Opinion? Send it to

‘The most peaceful sleep’: Cancer is nudging me to picture dying in a new way

By Adam Philip Stern

Christopher Furlong/Getty Images

The concept that dying is like an immensely restful sleep has begun to resonate with me since I was diagnosed with metastatic kidney cancer.

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Is there a best time of day to see your doctor?

By Mitesh Patel

Barrett Ward/Unsplash

To get the best medical care, it shouldn't really matter if you see your doctor in the morning, the middle of the day, or the late afternoon. But it can.

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Is tribalism undermining objectivity about low-carb, high-fat diets?

By Nicola Guess and Ethan J. Weiss


Tribalism is creeping into the online conversation about low-carbohydrate, high-fat diets, making it hard to disentangle science from advocacy.

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Doctors need to regain patients’ trust. Nurses can help them do that

By Haider Warraich

Library of Congress

Only one-third of Americans have a great deal of trust in physicians. They should take lessons from nurses, the most trusted professionals in the U.S.

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It’s time to stop murder by counterfeit medicine

By Joel G. Breman


Counterfeit medicines and substandard drugs kill thousands of people a year around the world. Better technology and stronger laws can help stop the problem.

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We need more signal and less noise about industry payments to doctors

By Genevieve P. Kanter


Open Payments discloses industry payments to doctors. It may incur distrust in doctors, even those who have never taken a dime from drug/device companies.

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Cancer patients should be treated by their doctors, not pharmacy benefit managers

By Jeff Vacirca


Pharmacy benefit managers have become interlopers between cancer doctors and their patients, second-guessing and sometimes delaying treatment.

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How Insys undermined an FDA effort to protect the public from dangerous opioids

By William Fleischman and Joseph S. Ross


The FDA started a risk evaluation and mitigation strategy to restrict prescribing of quick-absorbing fentanyl to appropriate patients. Insys undermined it.

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Sunday, May 12, 2019


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