Science-Based Medicine

“Young blood” infusions: same old snake oil (Do, 20 Jun 2019)
There's no reliable evidence that an infusion of blood plasma from a young donor will benefit an older person, and there are risks, but Ambrosia Health is selling "young blood" infusions for thousands of dollars anyway. The FDA has taken notice.
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Radioactive Energy Cards (Wed, 19 Jun 2019)
Thailand officials warn of a radioactive snake-oil "energy card." It's worse than worthless – it's actively dangerous.
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Can A One-Minute Cure Really Heal Virtually All Diseases? (Tue, 18 Jun 2019)
The author of this book claims to have found a one-minute cure that will heal virtually all diseases. The claim is ludicrous, and is not supported by any evidence.
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Dubious for-profit stem cell clinics: Co-opting ClinicalTrials.gov as a marketing tool (Mon, 17 Jun 2019)
Over twenty years ago, cancer quack Stanislaw Burzynski pioneered the abuse of the clinical trial process as a marketing tool to sell his antineoplastons. Now, for-profit stem cell clinics are using ClinicalTrials.gov as a marketing tool for their unproven therapies by listing dubious and scientifically worthless trials in this government database. What can be done?
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Belief in Homeopathy Results in the Death of a 7-Year-Old Italian Child (Fri, 14 Jun 2019)
Yet another child has suffered and died because of belief in pseudomedical nonsense, this time when his parents chose homeopathy rather than appropriate medical evaluation.
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Lactation cookies feed on breastfeeding anxieties (Thu, 13 Jun 2019)
There’s little good evidence to say "lactation cookies" do anything at all. If you want cookies, eat cookies. Lactation cookies are an expensive scam.
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Taking On the Wellness Industry (Wed, 12 Jun 2019)
The wellness industry is just one more manifestation of quackery and pseudoscience in health.
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Juice Plus+: Good Marketing, Not Good Science (Tue, 11 Jun 2019)
Juice Plus+ is a multilevel marketing company selling fruits and vegetables that they have reduced to a powder and put into capsules. It's clever marketing using deceptive advertising. There is no scientific evidence that it benefits health.
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Patients Blinded by Stem Cell Therapy: FDA (and consumers) win a legal victory! (Mon, 10 Jun 2019)
The Food and Drug Administration just won a court case supporting the agency's ability to regulate stem cell clinics that rely on client-derived adipose tissues. This is a win for consumer protection, though too late to help those already harmed.
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Direct to Consumer Telemedicine’s Flaws (Fri, 07 Jun 2019)
Telemedicine is here, probably to stay, but with its arrival come new problems.
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Walmart sued for deceiving customers in selling homeopathic remedies (Thu, 06 Jun 2019)
A lawsuit claiming Walmart fraudulently deceives consumers in the sale of worthless homeopathic remedies has been filed by the Center for Inquiry (CFI), acting on behalf of the general public. CFI says co-mingling ineffective homeopathic products with science-based treatments on Walmart's pharmacy shelves and website misleads customers into thinking they are equivalent, when "there is not a shred of credible scientific evidence" that homeopathy works, "or indeed could possibly work."
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WHO Promotes Unscientific TCM (Wed, 05 Jun 2019)
The World Health Organization endorses quackery in the form of TCM.
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Everlywell: At-Home Lab Tests That Don’t Make Sense (Tue, 04 Jun 2019)
EverlyWell offers 34 at-home tests for everything from IgG tests for food sensitivities to a Sleep and Stress test. Most of them make no sense and are likely to mislead customers.
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The FDA’s accelerated drug approval program is failing to protect cancer patients (Mon, 03 Jun 2019)
Drug approval is a process that should be and, for the most part, is rooted in rigorous science. However, there is always a countervailing pressure to approve new drugs rapidly, particularly in cancer. That's why the FDA created the accelerated approval program in the early 1990s. Unfortunately, increasingly this approval process appears to be failing us in oncology. Reform is needed.
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U.S. Measles Elimination Status in Jeopardy as the Number of Cases Reach 25 Year High (Fri, 31 May 2019)
Thanks in large part to anti-vaccine propaganda and decreasing vaccination rates, 2019 is shaping up to be a bad year when it comes to measles outbreaks, the worst in over 2 decades to be exact. And we are now at risk of losing our hard-fought elimination status.
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Infomercial in PLOS One links to website selling unproven treatments for fibromyalgia and dementia (Thu, 30 May 2019)
PLOS One recently published a clinical trial that was essentially a poorly-disguised advertisement for an unproven product. I object to this use of the scientific literature to market such a device.
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Time to Move Beyond the Impact Factor (Wed, 29 May 2019)
The impact factor has become the one metric for journal quality. It's time to rethink this system.
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Treating Mental Illness with Nutrition: The Walsh Protocol (Tue, 28 May 2019)
The Walsh Institute offers the Walsh protocol for the nutritional treatment of mental illness. This "orthomolecular psychiatry" is not supported by any clinical studies.
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The Yoke of Chiropractic: Vertebral Subluxation Doctrine (Mon, 27 May 2019)
The mysterious, asymptomatic chiropractic “vertebral subluxation complex” alleged to be a cause of disease has never been proven to exist. A real orthopedic vertebral subluxation, which can be identified by imaging and by physical signs, has never been demonstrated to be a cause of organic disease. Chiropractic subluxation theory has been perpetuated largely by misinformation, fear, and a powerful placebo effect, produced, in part, by insignificant cavitation (popping) that occurs during manipulation of normal joints.
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Pee Values: Tapping into large databases to answer an awkward situation in veterinary medicine (Fri, 24 May 2019)
A handy research tool has just helped answer some long standing questions about the spaying of female dogs and urinary incontinence.
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FDA should pull the plug on thermography (Thu, 23 May 2019)
The FDA says there's no good evidence that thermography can reliably screen for breast cancer or any other disease. Instead of pursuing the unlawful promotion of thermography for breast cancer detection on a case-by-case basis, the FDA should pull the plug on thermographic devices.
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Stem Cells for Knee Arthritis (Wed, 22 May 2019)
Stem cell treatments for knee arthritis are not yet ready for prime time, but that has not stopped their premature commercialization.
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The Best Science from The New England Journal of Medicine (Tue, 21 May 2019)
The editor-in-chief of The New England Journal of Medicine has selected a dozen articles published during his tenure that epitomize the best of science-based medicine.
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Chronic Lyme disease: Fake diagnosis, not fake disease (Mon, 20 May 2019)
Believe it or not, an encounter on Twitter actually changed Dr. Gorski's mind. Chronic Lyme disease is a fake diagnosis, not a fake disease.
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Is Dentistry Science Based? (Fri, 17 May 2019)
A recent article in The Atlantic claims that dentistry is not science-based. Is it right? Nah.
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CAM and cancer: Who uses CAM, and why? (Thu, 16 May 2019)
Many patients with cancer use complementary and alternative medicine, and it is important to understand why.
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5G Is Coming (Wed, 15 May 2019)
The imminent roll out of 5G technology has again sparked media coverage of the possible risks of EMF exposure, but the scientific consensus remains that the technology is safe.
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SmartJane Test of Vaginal Health: Clever Marketing, Questionable Science (Tue, 14 May 2019)
uBiome claims that its SmartJane test's proprietary technology empowers customers to assess their own vaginal health. The company is being investigated for fraudulent billing practices, and the rationale for the test makes no sense.
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The NORI protocol: An unproven fruit-based nutritional treatment for cancer sold by a self-proclaimed “expert” (Mon, 13 May 2019)
Mark Simon is the founder of the Nutritional Oncology Research Institute. He doesn't have an MD, DO, nor PhD. (He doesn't even have an ND!) Yet he claims to have discovered a dietary protocol that can cure cancer. Can it? (I think you know the answer to this question.)
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Patients blinded by stem cell therapy: an update (Fri, 10 May 2019)
An update on the tragic results of unproven stem cell treatments to treat macular degeneration.
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