I’m choosing to blog about a HealthDay story headlined, “British Study Suggests Mammograms Do More Harm Than Good,” rather than do one of our criteria-driven systematic story reviews because our criteria don’t address the bigger picture.
And that bigger picture is this:
In a criteria-driven, systematic story review of another HealthDay story about a Dutch study this week headlined, “Mammograms Cut Risk of Breast Cancer Death by Half, Study Finds,” our review team commented: Read more »
*This blog post was originally published at Health News Review*
Journalist Larry Husten, on his Cardiobrief blog, writes, “Hype Aside, Hope for Stem Cell Therapy May Be Emerging From Hibernation.”
It was one of the only notes of caution we saw in our limited sampling of news stories about an analysis of an experimental stem cell intervention in 14 people – only 8 of whom were followed for a year. Husten wrote:
“Two small studies of cardiac stem cells for the treatment of heart failure have shown promise, but ABC News, CBS News and other media outlets are throwing around words like “medical breakthrough” and “heart failure cure.” ABC News correspondent Richard Besser was so enthusiastic that anchor Diane Sawyer commented that she had never seen him “so excited.” The first author of one of the studies, Roberto Bolli, said the work could represent “the biggest advance in cardiology in my lifetime.”
The reality may be somewhat more prosaic.” Read more »
*This blog post was originally published at Gary Schwitzer's HealthNewsReview Blog*
Here on SBM we have frequently had cause to criticize the media for poor science reporting and for spreading misinformation. Among many other individual offenders, we have criticized Dr. Oz for promoting alternative medicine on his TV show and gullibly promoting guests who pretend to talk to the dead and pretend to heal people with carnival sideshow tricks. We tend to be negative and critical because somebody has to do it, but it’s not pleasant. For once, I have some good things to say.
The September 12 issue of TIME magazine was a Special Nutrition Issue. The cover featured pictures of food and the title “What to Eat Now: Uncovering the Myths about Food by Dr. Oz.” It devotes 7 pages to an article by him entitled “The Oz Diet: No more myths. No more fads. What you should eat — and why.” This is followed by a 5 page article by John Cloud “Nutrition in a Pill? I took 3000 supplements over five months. Here’s what happened.” Both articles have a rational, science-based perspective without any intrusions of woo-woo.
Oz on What to Eat
Oz acknowledges that the science of nutrition is not simple and that much of what we once believed has been discarded in the face of new knowledge. He debunks a number of popular misconceptions about diet. Most of what he says is consistent with scientific evidence and with mainstream diet advice. Read more »
*This blog post was originally published at Science-Based Medicine*
This NCI Cancer Bulletin article on the use of social media at this week’s American Society of Clinical Oncology is worth reading. It showcases how a major medical organization sees social media unfolding at a national meeting. I’ll be following #ASCO11 closely where some sources predict the Tweet count could reach 10-15,000.
What caught my eye was discussion surrounding the speaker-imposed restriction of Twitter at scientific presentations. Apparently some meetings such as the Biology of Genomes Conference at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, presenters have to grant permission to allow the use of Twitter (this apparently will not be the case at ASCO).
This is a quote from the meeting media policy at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory
Often, during the course of a meeting, a scientist will present a discovery, method, or current project that is not yet complete or published. Therefore, to prevent the premature release of confidential information, we require all media attendees to obtain permission in advance from the relevant scientist prior to reporting any spoken or printed information gleaned from the meetings. Media attendees are encouraged to approach scientists out-of-session (e.g. during coffee breaks, poster sessions, wine and cheese parties, etc.) for informal discussions, formal interviews, and/or permission to report sensitive information at the appropriate time. Read more »
*This blog post was originally published at 33 Charts*
Internet addiction is becoming a major problem, and it’s less and less surprising when reports focusing on this issue are being published. Lately, the New York Times came up with the analysis of a recent study:
Researchers at the University of Maryland who asked 200 students to give up all media for one full day found that after 24 hours many showed signs of withdrawal, craving and anxiety along with an inability to function well without their media and social links.
Susan Moeller, the study’s project director and a journalism professor at the university, said many students wrote about how they hated losing their media connections, which some equated to going without friends and family.
I did some research and browsed the website of Microsoft’s Internet Addiction Recovery Program. Read more »
*This blog post was originally published at ScienceRoll*