Egyptian Medical Myths that Wave Goodbye to Logic

“Please help me; can I get pregnant from oral sex?”.“I’m serious, I’m freaking out and I don’t know what to do!”

No, I’m not making those up. I once got those two questions on Being a doctor makes you realize how messed up people’s understanding of things. Urban myths and medical misconceptions are so prevalent among our ‘educated’ community, you would be surprised. I always wonder where those misunderstandings stemfrom. Some claim it’s the movies but I’d say it’s just plain ignorance.

It is always interesting reading people’s questions on the internet regarding the effects of some food on their health, some drugs on their sexual activity and other wondrous questions one would not fathom how people connect such things together. So here are my two cents on medical misconceptions:

Bipolar disorder: Apparently everyone on Facebook has bipolar disorder. Exhibit A:“I like white chocolate and dark chocolate. OMG I’m Bipolar!” No honey you’re not bipolar, you’re a chocolate who**. Exhibit B: “I was so sad then I started laughing, I think I’m bipolar.” Darling, it’s your hormones, they’re messing you up.

While Bipolar disorder is not a walk in the park, it’s actually a mood disorder where one oscillates between periods of depression and mania. And its control takes years of medications and careful follow-up.

The Medical Layy: There’s nothing ‘medical’ about your Shisha layy! Hell, there is nothing medical about shisha in general; it’s such an oxymoron linking shisha and anything that’s medical just because thelayy is disposable. Hygienic?Maybe.Seriously smoking shisha for an hour is equivalent to God knows how many cigarette packs. Not to mention that the recent emergence of Tuberculosis has been attributed directly to shisha. So can you please think twice before calling it “Medical”?

Headaches and hypertension:   “Mum I have a headache; I’ll go measure my blood pressure at the pharmacy across the street”

I don’t get where the whole first symptom of hypertension equals headache came from.hypertension is called ‘the silent killer’ for a reason people. Hypertension classically presents with no symptoms, where headache is not a main symptom of hypertension by any mean.

Antibiotics:  “I have a cold so I’ll go take an antibiotic to make it go faster”

As everybody knows, the common cold or the flu is caused by a virus where antibiotics are effective against bacteria. Epiphany, right? The abuse of antibiotics caused the emergence of antibiotic resistant strains. It’s true, sometimes you might need antibiotic after suffering from the flu but that’s in case of secondary bacterial infections as pneumonia and ear infections but not indicated with each flu you suffer from. One should be more careful and consult a doctor before actually starting an antibiotic course because once you start it, you have to finish it.

Schizophrenia:  Confusing multiple personality disorders for schizophrenia is classic. I’d blame the movies for this one to be honest. While schizophrenia actually is a condition where one suffers from auditory hallucinations, social withdrawal and false beliefs that people are conspiring against him or trying to kill him. The false portrayal of schizophrenics in movies as people with split personalities fed years of false understanding. 


You can practice sex with everyone on earth and you won’t get STDs if you/your partner are wearing a condom is False! Condoms don’t offer 100% protection. There’s no such a thing as safe sex actually. The only safe sex you can practice is abstaining.  Have you ever heard of the virus that causes warts and predisposes to cancer cervix? Yes, Human Papilloma Virus (HPV). Well, if you don’t know it, now you do. HPV penetrates condoms. BAM!Don’t get me wrong, condoms are essential. They protect you and your partner from lots of diseases but not all. Multiple sexual partners even if the sex was safe entail dangers. 


We’ve all watched Adel Emamin the movies devouring a big seafood dish shouting “fosfooor” then pounce on his wife making love like animals. There is no scientific basis for the whole fish is full of phosphorus and will cure all your sexual problems. No,do not believe what you watch, it is just like any other when it comes to this territory. And yes, the same goes for Kaware3, there is so no proof that a man turns into a horse when he eats Shorbet Kaware3, sadly.

More to come:

Swallowing chewing gum:the legend says swallowing gum will glue your intestinal loops together, something that no one ever confirmed, except our parents.

DC shock: according to movies, anyone who is dying from any cause can be shocked to life using electric shock. While science proved that there are only two heart rhythms that indicate the use of DC shock, movie directors beg to differ.


Mohamed Adel a young Radiologist with a passion for writing.

Twitter: @m3adel

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