How SHOULD We Discuss Quackery with Innocents and the Not-so-Innocent?
Recents posts by Drs. Albietz and Gorski have highlighted questions that are recurrent on SBM. We are convinced that medicine should be based on real knowledge, to the extent that it exists, and that physicians should be honest; these are matters of science and ethics. How do we reconcile that wit…
How not to win friends and influence people
BLOGGER’S NOTE: The incident described in this post is true, although somewhat embellished to protect the names and identities of the innocent, if you know what I mean. This conversation occurred a few years ago at a large national cancer meeting.
The question caught me by surprise.
The “Gonzalez Trial” for Pancreatic Cancer: Outcome Revealed
Dr. Lipson’s “detoxification” post on Thanksgiving Day and Dr. Gorski’s recent post about “Gerson Therapy” were timely, because last weekend I noticed something that I should have noticed months ago. Before delivering the punch line, let me remind you, …
How State Medical Boards Shoot Themselves (and You) in the Foot
This is almost the final entry (for now) in a series of posts about the pitfalls of regulating physicians who peddle quackery.† In previous entries we’ve seen how quacks have portrayed an illegal and pseudoscientific treatment, intravenous hydrogen peroxide, as legitimate; how a physician w…
Placebos in the news again
Towards the end of last week, I was contemplating what I would be writing about for Monday. No topic had quite floated my boat, but I hated to dip into the archive of topics I’ve written about before to update a post. After all, I like to be topical whenever possible. Then what to my wondering…
The Pseudomedical Pseudoprofessional Organization (PPO*)
(*Not to be confused with “Preferred Provider Organization,” which shares the acronym)
This is part of an ongoing series† discussing pitfalls of regulating physicians, but I’ve decided, in the interest of flexibility, to vary the title. A couple of weeks ago I gave some exampl…
Disintegrating Integrative Medicine: Lessons From Baking
Suppose I were to bake you a cake and my ingredient list included the following:
What is the problem with the ingredient list? It has integrated inedible and poisonous items into the very fine basic ingredients that m…
Fun with homeopaths and meta-analyses of homeopathy trials
Homeopathy amuses me.
Well, actually it both amuses me and appalls me. The amusement comes from just how utterly ridiculous the concepts behind homeopathy are. Think about it. It is nothing but pure magical thinking. Indeed, at the very core of homeopathy is a concept that can only be considered to …