Misery loves company. Famous misery brings legions. Whenever somebody famous gets a disease, awareness about that disease spikes dramatically. For instance, can you match these famous people (list 1) with their famous maladies (list 2)?
- Lance Armstrong
- Michael Jackson
- Michael J. Fox
- Parkinson’s disease
- Testicular cancer
- Plastic surgery addiction, cuckoo-for-Cocoa-Puffs certifiably insane
Famous illnesses generate action as well as awareness. When they scraped skin cancer off Ronald Reagan’s nose (basal cell carcinoma!), everybody hurried off to the doctor to get in on the nose-scraping action. The same thing happened with Jimmy Carter’s hemorrhoids. Well not exactly the same thing, but… you know.
Given this situation, two physicians launched a site to turn famous illnesses into teachable moments: CelebrityDiagnosis.com. Here you can learn not only that Walter Cronkite died of vascular disease of the brain. You also get a run-down on stroke symptoms to watch out for. Beyond this we learn that Gidget, the Taco Bell chihuahua, suffered the same fate (she was last seen talking out of only one side of her mouth).
It’s a clever idea, and a good way for doctors to get the last word over diagnosis-bungling journalists. [Seen at Bio-IT World]