Controversial new research published today in The Lancet challenges the accepted medical wisdom that any ailment which does not result in your death must inevitably make you stronger. Doctors have discovered that among those conditions which won’t leave you feeling better than before are cancer, HIV/AIDS, strokes, Parkinson’s disease, a broken spine, Ebola, heart attacks, radiation poisoning and massive trauma to the head. In fact the study concluded that the only medical condition that will definitely make you stronger is prolonged steroid addiction, but that too can cause premature death.
‘We thought we’d spell it out clearly,’ said a despondent Sir Liam Donaldson, the Chief Medical Officer. ‘Illnesses make you weaker – that’s what they do. There are no recorded instances of a rejuvenating bout of typhoid or a restorative case of the clap. I cannot stress strongly enough that life is a degenerative condition. Sadly, there’s no known cure for the stupidity that makes people swallow all these old wives’ tales, and as a doctor it really hurts when you can’t help a patient. Emotionally, that is, not physically. There‘s no pathogenic link.’
However, the media has been quick to criticise the study. A Daily Mail editorial attacked its ‘tedious capitulation to scientific rigour and lazy reliance on overwhelming empirical evidence‘, while a poll on page 24 found that 100% of its readers thought laughter was the best medicine. The edition also carried an interesting feature on the cancer-preventing properties of sherbet and an extract from Silvio Berlusconi’s autobiography in which he credits his full head of hair to the wind changing direction in 1957 and his hair staying that way.
But for 82-year-old Eileen Clarke, a retired housewife from Didcot and lifelong advocate of home-spun medical wisdom, the research has raised a doubt about time being the greatest healer. ‘My husband Alf is 91 now, and if I’m honest he’s getting worse rather than better. He’s smoked since the age of seven, and it’d never done him any harm – all four foot eight of him – right up until the tracheotomy.’
Although Eileen claims it was the Golden Delicious that kept her husband clear of doctors for so many years, she’s now concerned by the lack of carrots in hospital meals. ‘After his bladder’s got him up each night, the poor love loses his way and the nurses discover him trying to find a bed in the women’s ward down the corridor. Mind you, I did always tell him that sitting that close to the TV to masturbate wouldn’t do his eyes any good.’
Genghis Cohen (similar to a piece previously submitted by Snarkos)