Lies, Damned Lies, and Medical Science

by Larry Emmott on November 1, 2010

in General

Every dentist should read this article. I found it quite worrisome yet I really wasn’t surprised. It just verified what I had observed and in fact feared for some time.

He and his team have shown, again and again, and in many different ways, that much of what biomedical researchers conclude in published studies—conclusions that doctors keep in mind when they prescribe antibiotics or blood-pressure medication, or when they advise us to consume more fiber or less meat, or when they recommend surgery for heart disease or back pain—is misleading, exaggerated, and often flat-out wrong.

The article does a good job of explaining the “Meta Research” that shows that much of what we tell patients and the treatments we advise are questionable if not out right wrong. There seems to be many reasons for this including research bias, media sensationalism and funding issues.

The article briefly mentions “Evidence Based Medicine” as a method to determine effective treatments. I am troubled by this as well. “Evidence Based” sounds so obvious and good yet it would still be subject to the same biases and financial incentives.

Related

via Lies, Damned Lies, and Medical Science – Magazine – The Atlantic.

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