“Evidence based medicine” should, surely, mean all drugs have been rigorously tested. But after 20 years as a health journalist I’m still shocked at how evidence for harm can be hidden and evidence for benefit boosted.
We are all being encouraged to take more responsibility for our own health and many of us would like to use non-drug treatments and life-style changes as well. But gathering evidence that it works is more complicated. Even when it is there it can be ignored.
This is the place to check for cases where the evidence is lacking or has been fudged and to discuss what needs to be done to make it better.
March 5, 2014
You’ve probably heard that there’s a proposal to make even more people eligible for the cholesterol lowering drugs statins. I’ve just published post on the website HealthInsightUK that puts a big question mark over the over the reliablility of the evidence that suggestion is based on. It comes from the highly respected but rather secretive […]
February 17, 2014
If you are a 50-something or older, the next time you go to the doctor for a check up you could find yourself being told you should start taking cholesterol-lowering statins even if your weight is good, you don’t have raised blood pressure, you exercise and you have no history of heart disease. That’s because […]
January 13, 2014
Apologies for the hysterical headline but it’s just the kind of irresponsible, ill-informed screamer that regularly heads stories about some new study that “proves” that vitamins are ineffective generators of expensive urine and may well be dangerous. If you want to know why such studies are all too often based on poor science and frequently […]
January 7, 2014
One of the comforting myths about the powerful drugs used in modern medicine is that they are prescribed on the basis of good scientific evidence. However this is an illusion, which experts have known about for decades, because drug companies can prevent doctors and regulators from seeing unfavourable evidence. If you are being prescribed a […]
December 24, 2013
Eating an apple a day is as effective (almost) at fending off heart disease as taking a statin. That was the catchy claim of an article in the BMJ last week reported by most of the papers. On the surface it was a light, good news Christmassy tale but dig a little deeper and it looks […]