Doctors order too many tests. Some are useless, some are harmless (except for the cost), but some can lead to serious bodily harm. Misconceptions about tests Many people, even doctors, tend to think of tests as giving consistent, reliable, yes/no answers. They think a test can make a diagnosis, but that’s not how it works.
Kidney cancer diagnoses are increasing but there has been no increase in mortality or rate of metastases. Kidney cancer is most often diagnosed as an incidental finding on a CT scan that was done for unrelated reasons. Treatment may not always be needed. In the February 1, 2019 issue of American Family Physician, there is an
First there was leaky gut; now there’s leaky brain. These questionable concepts are being promoted by practitioners of so-called “functional medicine.” First there was leaky gut Three years ago Mark Crislip wrote about leaky gut syndrome for SBM. He said, “because of an almost complete lack of supporting basic science and few therapeutic clinical trials showing no effect,
Skeptical Inquirer 2015 For “Myth” 3 in her article ”Pesticides: Just How Bad Are They?” (May/June 2015) Hall states, “…99.99 percent of all the pesticides in our diet are natural components of the food….” (by volume? by weight? by molecular count? by list entry count?) “Any synthetic pesticide residue is a drop in the
A new documentary takes a novel approach. It features scientist moms who are just like other moms except that they understand the science. They set the record straight about GMOs, vaccines, and other subjects of interest to parents. They provide the facts to counteract unreasonable fears. At the recent conference of the Committee for Skeptical
Daniel Amen, the media-savvy psychiatrist and promoter of SPECT scans, has teamed-up with his wife Tana to write a self-help book that hopelessly muddles good medical advice with misinformation and speculation. Dr. Daniel Amen has been called the most popular psychiatrist in America. His main claim to fame is the SPECT (Single Photon Emission Computed Tomography)
If vegans really followed these guidelines, they could get adequate nutrition; but all too often they don’t. NOTE: The original version of this book review was criticized for not making it clear when I was simply reporting the book’s content and when I was expressing support for one of its arguments. I have revised it
When tested, therapeutic touch (TT) practitioners failed to detect the human energy field they thought they could feel. Experimental setup from Rosa et al., from JAMA, 1998, 279 (13) A study out of Iran titled “Therapeutic touch for nausea in breast cancer patients receiving chemotherapy: Composing a treatment” was recently published in the journal Complementary Therapies in
Skin tags (acrochordon) are benign growths, often raised on a pedicle with a tiny stem. 46% of the population has one or more of them. They are usually ignored, but some people think they are ugly and want to get rid of them, and sometimes the lesions rub on clothing and become irritated. Never fear!
December 20, 2011 The holiday season is upon us. As a bit of a holiday from science-based writing, I thought I would offer some thoughts inspired by the season and not supported by any scientific evidence. One of my friends refers to Christmas as “The Feast of St. Dyspepsia.” Holidays are indeed an occasion for