A London opium den in the 1870s, by Gustav Doré. Image: Hulton Archive/Getty
Queen Victoria on cannabis, and all the other things you never knew about drugs
By Steven Poole - 19 February 14:09

Modern governments have long demonised drugs, but the world now may be inching its way back towards the more rational view held in the 19th century.

Passengers on a crowded tube train, 2014. Photo: Getty.
Behold how the wage-slaving grunts welcome the invasion of the rent-a-squaddies
By Will Self - 13 February 17:21

Britain’s ongoing flirtation with a military way of life.

Antidepressants fluoxetine photographed in the US. Photo: Getty Images.
When are we mature enough to make life-or-death decisions about our body?
By Phil Whitaker - 12 February 10:32

This 16-to-17 age band can pose the most acute ethical dilemmas, as a case in my area illustrated all too starkly.

A second hand bookshop in Glasgow. How many books is too many books?
You wouldn’t believe how much more objectionable I’d be if I wasn’t a socialist
By Nicholas Lezard - 12 February 10:31

That I have lived pretty much entirely self-sufficiently for six and a half years is a matter of some astonishment.

The mystery tan and the snore that threatened a marriage
By Phil Whitaker - 06 February 8:41

Two needles in the haystack of general practice.

Sometimes, a lump is just a lump and it’s best to let sleeping tumours lie
By Phil Whitaker - 23 January 17:55

With the best intentions, modern medicine is leading many people to opt for invasive surgery they do not need.

I didn't fully understand what it means to be pro-choice ... until I decided not to have an abortion
By Sarah Ditum - 21 January 9:06

After getting pregnant at 20, the life I thought I'd have suddenly vanished. Knowing that I still had control over what happened to my body helped me to come to terms with my new future.

Why obesity is no longer a rich world problem
By Sophie McBain - 03 January 11:52

Obesity rates triple in developing countries. A report by the Overseas Development Institute has found that one in three adults globally is obese.

New out-of-hours care reforms were a game of Russian roulette for GPs. We pulled the trigger
By Phil Whitaker - 19 December 16:49

Come April 2014, our out-of-hours service will be run by strangers based many hundreds of miles away.

Christmas in A&E is a time like any other. Just take off the deely-boppers when giving bad news
By Brian Kellett - 15 December 15:30

If you’re the kind of person who thinks, “It’s Christmas – A&E will be empty,” and comes in to have their verruca treated, you are wrong.

Children's Hospital.
Why don't we care about children's pain?
By Patrick McGrath - 13 December 14:34

Until the 1980s children were given no anaesthesia during open heart surgery - and we still don't manage their pain properly now.

Why it's time for plain cigarette packaging
By Michael Brooks - 12 December 14:47

The take-home message on smoking from science? Quit now.

Why it's time to ditch the word "cancer"
By Adrian Marston - 12 December 12:38

A former president of the Association of Surgeons of Great Britain and Ireland argues that the word “cancer” is unhelpful in efforts to lead patients away from quacks.

A woman, suffering from Alzheimer's desease, holds the hand of a relative
Who will care for Alzheimer's sufferers in low income countries?
By Sophie McBain - 12 December 11:55

In 2050, 71 per cent of Alzheimer's patients will be in low to middle income countries. Will they be able to access medical care?

Miranda Hart.
And so another idol is lost - Miranda Hart has made an exercise video
By Rhiannon and Holly - 24 November 13:22

Miranda Hart has made a decent career out of pillorying the kind of standards women are expected to live up to - but her latest venture, an exercise video called "Maracattack" has put an end to all that.

The drug that could save tens of thousands of lives - if only doctors could be told about it
By Ian Roberts - 22 November 11:25

The clotting drug tranexamic acid has already been included in the White House Medical Unit treatment protocols for President Obama. But until more people know about it, thousands of trauma victims all over the world will die needlessly without it.

Pain helps us to survive - but it can also turn our own body into an enemy
By Phil Whitaker - 21 November 13:31

When a patient is diagnosed with fibromyalgia, all too often symptoms are dismissed as "all in the mind".

New Statesman
Are rich countries taking too many antidepressants?
By Sophie McBain - 21 November 12:14

One in 10 people in Iceland are on antidepressants, and prescription rates across the OECD have dramatically increased.

New Statesman
Your bones may need calcium, but here's why it's time to moove on from milk
By Phil Whitaker - 14 November 12:12

Because of a growing body of research, there is a dawning appreciation that allergy to the proteins in cow’s milk is behind a range of childhood illnesses.

New Statesman
When blood vessels go wrong, why are we better at treating the heart than the head?
By Phil Whitaker - 07 November 7:58

The strange discrepancies between how we treat strokes and heart attacks.

New Statesman
Why do we still believe that letting drug addicts "hit rock bottom" is a good thing?
By Liz Evans - 31 October 14:08

Our densely populated, low-income neighbourhood of the Downtown Eastside in Vancouver has 16,000 residents and about 6,000 injection drug users. Day after day, I’ve seen kind, funny and gentle people lose their families, get sicker, become more isolated a

New Statesman
Can Channel 4's Bedlam do for psychiatry what Educating Yorkshire did for teaching?
By Billy Boland - 31 October 12:50

While an under-performing school holds ample opportunities for teachers to turn lives around, inpatient psychiatric units are where lives get put on hold.

Inside the quackish cult of alternative medicine
By Jerome Groopman - 21 October 15:36

Typically absent from the claims about many “alternative treatments” are their risks. Jerome Groopman explores Dr Paul Offit's battle against charlatanism.

Three days in a US hospital convinced me that America needs ObamaCare
By Eleanor Margolis - 17 October 16:41

The bare-faced callousness of the American healthcare system is obvious. This isn’t a hospital; it’s the Wild West.

New Statesman
Those who die of anorexia don’t always do so surrounded by sympathy and understanding
By Glosswitch - 15 October 10:40

Anorexia might win the eating disorder visibility contest but it doesn’t win any on-the-ground PR battles.

New Statesman
Not every mentally ill person is a poster child for mental illness
By Glosswitch - 08 October 14:16

I’ve spent time in psychiatric hospitals; I look like a “normal” person, too. But what if I didn’t?

New Statesman
How big a difference will the world's first malaria vaccine make?
By Sophie McBain - 08 October 10:51

By 2015, GlaxoSmithKline hopes to market the world's first malaria vaccine. But a lot more needs to be done to tackle a disease that kills 660,000 people a year.

New Statesman
The fight against entropy
By Nicholas Lezard - 03 October 15:26

It all begins with a hard line against Eucryl Tooth Powder.

New Statesman
Covering up abuse: How Winterbourne View happened again
By Alan White - 02 October 12:50

“These aren’t isolated instances. It’s cultural, and it’s grown out of what’s happened in the care sector."

Gabrielle Ortiz.
E-cigarettes should be marketed as a tobacco deterrent, not the skinny jeans of the inhalation industry
By Vickie Morrish - 26 September 12:00

Lorillard's "Blu" e-cigarettes are being sold as the latest vogue nicotine product, when really they should be presented as an attractive way of cutting down.