Earlier this week, a reader of ours wrote to Steve and me with a request: First off, I just want to say thank you for everything you gentlemen do. I find that your sites are extremely helpful when trying to figure out what level of information is BS, and what is real. In short, I was wondering if either of you two...
Complementary and alternative medicine is popular, but it's poorly regulated, and most products lack good evidence of efficacy. A new approach proposed in Australia may help consumers make more informed, science-based health decisions.
Prove the scientific consensus and win a prize: A time-dishonored PR ploy used by cranks, quacks, and pseudoscientists (Robert F. Kennedy Jr. edition)
Last week, antivaccine activist Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. teamed up with Robert De Niro to issue a challenge to provide one scientific study that proves thimerosal in vaccines is safe, with a cash prize of $100,000. They thus joined a long line of antivaxers, creationists, and climate science denialists offering money to "prove" the scientific consensus. Science doesn't work that way.
Spinal Manipulation for Back and Neck Pain: Does It Work? You would think it does if you read the article but not if you actually read the literature.
After the AREDS trial, people with moderate to severe age-related macular degeneration were advised to take dietary supplements to slow the progression of the disease. But some experts say the trial actually showed supplements don't work, and might even make some patients worse.
Drinking hydrogen peroxide kills. Homeopaths don't care if their nostrums kill children. Acupuncture is placebo. But you knew that. Saudi Arabia bans reiki for the damnedest reasons. Eating placentas. And more!
A new study suggests that physicians tend to overestimate the benefits of treatments, tests, and screening tests, while also underestimating harms.
Last week, a review of the reproducibility of several highly cited cancer biology papers was published. The results were mixed and demonstrate how difficult reproducing published results can be at times—and how scientists need to do better.