“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.
May 5, 2013
Could alcohol get a licence as a drug for depression? How do you test for the safety of a drug that causes the same side effects as the disease it is used to treat? These are just two of the points I didn’t have room for in my post last week on randomised controlled trials (RCTs) […]
April 28, 2013
Earlier this week the Daily Mail published my feature on side-effects and how patients aren’t properly warned about them. Antidepressants, for instance, can cause compulsive heavy drinking but you wouldn’t know it from the drug information leaflet. The article is about campaigning psychiatrist Dr David Healy, who believes patients need a more truthful account of […]
April 10, 2013
Who’s responsible for our diabetes/obesity epidemic? Is it those fat lazy bastards who eat crap food and sit on the couch all day or is it the drug companies that spend billions researching and marketing drugs of limited effectiveness or dubious safety or is the government that allows commercial interest to create a food supply […]
March 31, 2013
OK the judges have finished their deliberations, all the votes are in and it is time to roll out the blushing red carpet of shame and announce the worthy winner of this year’s Silver Bullet for the most egregious medical quackery. Many thanks to all of you who took time out from your busy on-line […]
March 29, 2013
A spring holiday change of pace here. Nothing about evidence or drugs just some rather extraordinary tales of the ways tiny single-celled micro-organisms can hijack the brain – mostly of insects but at least two do humans – and programme them to issue remarkably precise instructions. A Telegraph feature of mine from earlier in the […]