An individual who was both an anti-vaxxer and anti-masker claimed that “studies were done that show that surgeons who wore N95 masks for extended periods of time were shown to have decreased oxygen levels and were more prone to mistakes.” His argument was – “imagine what that would do to kids who were… read more "Do Surgeons Who Wear N95 Masks Have Lower Oxygen Levels and Make More Mistakes?"
Science Goes Viral
Joe Schwarcz has done it again! His new book is not only packed with good science-based information, but is highly entertaining. Joe Schwarcz’s prolific output continues. His latest book is Science Goes Viral. It’s not actually out yet (I read an advance copy) but can be pre-ordered on the Amazon website. As usual,… read more "Science Goes Viral"
Observational Studies and Experimental Studies
[Este artículo está disponible en español. La traducción al español apareció por primera vez en la revista Pensar.] Research studies can be divided into two types: observational studies and experimental studies. Observational studies simply observe the effect of a variable in a population. They can assess the strength of a… read more "Observational Studies and Experimental Studies"
Are Muscle Relaxants an Effective Adjunct for Treating Acute Low Back Pain? Yes and No
The journal American Family Physician left me confused about adding muscle relaxants to analgesics for acute low back pain. One article says it isn’t effective, but another article in the same issue says it is. For 22 years, American Family Physician (the journal of the American Academy of Family Physicians) has been… read more "Are Muscle Relaxants an Effective Adjunct for Treating Acute Low Back Pain? Yes and No"
Estudios observacionales y estudios experimentales
[This article is also available in English. Thanks to Pensar for the Spanish translation.] Los estudios de investigación médica se pueden dividir en dos tipos: observacionales y experimentales. Los estudios observacionales simplemente observan el efecto de una variable en una población. Pueden evaluar la fuerza de una relación, por ejemplo,… read more "Estudios observacionales y estudios experimentales"
Living with Uncertainty
Uncertainty is uncomfortable. It is only natural to want certainty. It is more comfortable to be certain and wrong than to be uncertain. Like anyone else, I would like to be comfortable, but I think truth matters. I’d rather be uncertain than wrong; wouldn’t you? As Voltaire said, “Uncertainty is… read more "Living with Uncertainty"
DNA Vibe Jazz Band
The DNA Vibe Jazz Band device promises to relieve pain and do other wonderful things. It has nothing to do with DNA, Jazz, or evidence. The ad says “Put it on, Turn it on, feel better. Guaranteed.” “Enjoy more of what you love.” “Reduce Pain, Speed Recovery, Improve Performance.” “Intelligent… read more "DNA Vibe Jazz Band"
Genetic Testing for Selection of Psychotropic Medications
GeneSight is a blood test to determine which neuropsychiatric medications are indicated for an individual based on genetic analysis. The test is expensive and not likely to be helpful for most patients. Patients who suffer from major depression and other neuropsychiatric conditions usually improve with medication, but about half of… read more "Genetic Testing for Selection of Psychotropic Medications"
Lumen’s Information Is Not So Illuminating
Lumen is a handheld device that you can supposedly use to “hack your metabolism”. The science behind it is not convincing. Users are essentially navel-gazing. An introductory video on the website for Lumen presents it as the first device for hacking your metabolism. They make a lot of claims that… read more "Lumen’s Information Is Not So Illuminating"
Green Lipped Mussels for Arthritis
[Este artículo está disponible en español. La traducción al español apareció por primera vez en la revista Pensar.] What are green-lipped mussels? My imagination conjures up a SpongeBob SquarePants episode featuring a clam-like creature with green lips, and I can’t help wondering what would happen if they applied red lipstick?… read more "Green Lipped Mussels for Arthritis"