evidence based medicine

Diet war veterans last stand. Recent saturated fat attack a blast from the past

3 by / on 23 Jun 2017, / in evidence based medicine, low fat diet

Last week a ‘Presidential Advisory Statement’ about saturated fat from the American Heart Association (AHA) produced a ‘you cannot be serious’ reaction from anyone who has looked at the evidence for the theory that saturated fat raises the risk of heart disease.

Evidence based medicine: failing to find the truth about diets

15 by / on 27 Jan 2017, / in evidence based medicine

A fine example of post truth and alternative facts appeared in the Guardian on Monday. Defining any diet that made a medical claim as a fad, the article consigned them all to the bin.

Treating serious vitamin B12 deficiency: a case of risk-benefit balancing gone mad

22 by / on 17 Oct 2016, / in evidence based medicine

Have you heard about the NHS trust that recently introduced an incredibly brutal, and possibly illegal, form of drug rationing to save money? Patients suffering post -operative pain will get half the dose normally required to keep them comfortable, kidney dialysis will be done twice a week rather than three and all diabetics will get the same amount of daily insulin regardless of their blood sugar levels.

The serious trust deficiency afflicting medical advice and what to do about it

26 by / on 8 Oct 2016, / in evidence based medicine

Trust me I’m a doctor has become a knowing, cynical catch-phrase but the underlying truth is that we do need to trust our doctors, not only because trusted doctors exert a beneficial healing effect but also because we are entrusting them with something precious – our health.

Independent investigation reveals NICE approved treatment only a fraction as effective as experts claim it is.

46 by / on 26 Sep 2016, / in evidence based medicine

Would any doctor continue to prescribe a drug which they had been told would benefit 20 per cent of patients with a specific illness, once the truth was revealed to be around 7 per cent, only one percent better than no treatment at all? You’d have to hope not and that concerned and angry doctors would then shout loudly that they had been lied to and that patients had endured years of pointless treatment.

Why are menopausal women still getting a form of HRT that’s clearly linked to cancer? There is an alternative

3 by / on 2 Sep 2016, / in evidence based medicine

So, women who take HRT to help with symptoms of the menopause have a three times greater risk of developing breast cancer, according to a paper in the British Journal of Cancer published a couple of weeks ago. That’s certainly alarming news if you are approaching or going through menopause but it should really not come as a great surprise. The issue of HRT and cancer has been rumbling away for over a decade.

Radical doctors throw away rule book to beat diabetes and obesity

11 by / on 22 Aug 2016, / in evidence based medicine

A small but remarkable trial of the effects that a change of lifestyle can have on diabetes and obesity has just been published in the relatively obscure SAMJ (South African Medical Journal).

The results are impressive and the implications ground breaking. The starting point is that the official ‘evidence based’, low fat, calories-in equals calories-out approach isn’t working.

Doctors can only tackle chronic disease with the right tools. Teach them nutrition

5 by / on 16 Jun 2016, / in evidence based medicine

Here’s a really bad idea. Send a dozen nutritionists to work alongside regular doctors in a Medecins Sans Frontières team providing emergency treatment to the wounded in a war zone. It’s a bad idea because they would lack any relevant skills. They might help speed up recovery but in the operating theatre they’d be be worse than useless as the wounded come in.

Meet a doctor who thinks for herself and wants you to as well

21 by / on 29 Apr 2016, / in evidence based medicine

The complicated and confusing debate about statins – are they worth taking or not; are they safe or do they have nasty side effect? – has suddenly plunged into anarchic and uncharted territory by the claims of a new rival drug.

Prozac is the safest drug for depressed children. Why this is a myth.

18 by / on 22 Mar 2016, / in evidence based medicine

There can be few people who think that putting an increasing number of children on SSRI anti-depressants is really a good idea but then reflect that it’s just one of those things. Cash strapped NHS; time-poor GPs; waiting lists of months for therapy; drugs cheap; they may help some.

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