Parents, patients, and doctors — of course they should be talking to one another and asking questions. But many lay people find doctors aloof and many doctors have a certain shyness which, while perhaps part of the reason they went into medicine, can be counter-productive. I myself in my 85 years have found all sorts of doctors but most of them have been easy to talk with; I even took one or two to lunch, one successfully, one unsuccessfully.

Pharmaceutical advertising tries to encourage people to ask their doctors for certain medications; this is not the way to encourage dialogue — it is a way of making money for firms. We need more control over the marketing of drugs and misinformation about them.

Norman Ravitch *62
Savannah, Ga.