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    The following is a guest blog post from one of our contributors, Susan Molchan, MD, a psychiatrist in the Washington, DC, area. She’s been closely following, and criticizing, NEJM’s stance on data-sharing and conflicts of interest. Last week, many media outlets, including the New York Times, reported on concerns about the validity of a huge, […]

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    opioid epidemic“Falsehood flies, and the Truth comes limping after it; so that when Men come to be undeceiv’d, it is too late; the Jest is over, and the Tale has had its Effect…”       Jonathan Swift, The Examiner, 1710 A very short letter published on January 10th, 1980, in The New England Journal of Medicine […]

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    brain dementia mental healthWithin the past couple of months the BMJ published two separate observational studies looking at how two very different lifestyle factors might impact memory and dementia. Both studies draw from the same group of research subjects: the Whitehall II cohort, which has followed roughly 10,000 British civil service workers for the past 30 years or so. […]

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    This is the second in an unplanned, occasional series about real people who are harmed by inaccurate, imbalanced, incomplete, misleading media messages. The first was about a man with glioblastoma brain cancer.

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    editors medical journals paymentsAbout half the editors at the most prestigious medical journals in the U.S. receive payments from the pharmaceutical or medical device industries. But only 30 percent of these journals make it clear to readers what their policies are regarding such conflicts of interest. Those are the findings of a Canadian study published last month in […]

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    A study published recently in The BMJ addressed a question with surefire media appeal: Does the political affiliation of doctors affect the quality of care that they provide to patients at the end of their lives? The story was snapped up by news organizations ranging from US News and World Report to the UK Daily […]

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    Rosenberg Nature immunotherapyLast week we reported on ‘One cancer patient’s dramatic response to immunotherapy…’ and highlighted what we thought was a lack of healthy skepticism in the extensive (and mostly fawning) news coverage. Most importantly we wanted to show that by highlighting the dramatic response of a single patient — without cautioning readers that just one dramatic […]

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    Houston Chronicle reporter Craig Hlavaty recently treated readers to a first-person account of getting an intravenous (IV) vitamin infusion inside a van parked outside his house. The article, “Feeling the drip, drip, drip of the mobile IV craze,” related how a needle was inserted into his arm, “just where a tattooed lightning bolt strikes.” Hlavaty […]

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    BMJ Case ReportsTake a guess where these headlines come from: Parkinsonism can be cured Therapeutic use of intermittent fasting for people with Type2 diabetes as an alternative to insulin Although the language wouldn’t be out of place in a supermarket tabloid, these headlines are actually from The BMJ Case Reports journal; more specifically, from a collection labeled “Myths […]

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  • 11/09/18--03:01: 5-Star Friday: Simplicity
  • 5-Star FridayHealth care is complex, but so much of its excellence and effectiveness comes from simplicity. Our 5-star selections this week are good examples of this. Our first story features a world leader in cancer who believes in simple and straightforward communication of risk, but challenges the prevailing notion that cancer screening is a “simple” and […]