An aromatherapy room spray was contaminated with bacteria that caused melioidosis, resulting in deaths and serious sequelae. Buyers were misled. When cases of melioidosis were diagnosed in four patients in four different states, doctors were puzzled. Melioidosis, infection with the bacterium Burkholderia pseudomallei, is typically associated with exposure to soil and water in… read more "Death by Aromatherapy"
[This article is also available in English. Thanks to Pensar for the Spanish translation.] La tarea de la FDA (Administración de Alimentos y Medicamentos de los Estados Unidos) es difícil. No tiene personal ni fondos suficientes. Tiene que transitar una línea muy fina entre aprobar prematuramente un nuevo medicamento que… read more "Error al aprobar un medicamento para el Alzheimer"
[Este artículo está disponible en español. La traducción al español apareció por primera vez en la revista Pensar.] The FDA has a difficult job. It is understaffed and underfunded. It has to walk a very fine line between prematurely approving a new drug that may turn out to be useless… read more "The FDA Blundered When It Approved Alzheimer Drug"
Big Pharma is not a misnomer. Pharmaceutical drugs are big business. The US is the world leader in producing new drugs and is responsible for nearly half of the new molecular entities (NME’s) that come on the market. Americans spend well over $300 billion yearly on prescription drugs. Both Big Pharma and the FDA have come… read more "How a Drug Is Born"
Our world has been disrupted due to legitimate fears about COVID-19. People are afraid, and unscrupulous and/or misinformed people have been quick to exploit those fears. The FTC has offered advice for consumers to help them avoid coronavirus scammers. On March 19 they published Part 2, and the FTC and FDA have… read more "Covid-19: A Field Day for Scams and Misinformation"
Starting with the Terrible Twos, when toddlers hear the word “No” on a regular basis, people don’t like to be told they can’t do something. They often believe government regulations interfere with their rights. The government requires vaccinations for school attendance; parents complain that they should be able to make… read more "Health Freedom, Right to Try, and Informed Consent"
I had heard of aloe vera. I’ve seen it grown in flowerpots in the home and broken open to apply its juices to irritated or injured skin. I’ve encountered it many times in crossword puzzles. I know a woman who has taken it orally. But recently it seems to have… read more "Aloe Vera"
Colloidal silver is back! It competed in the ring of science and was thoroughly clobbered. If it had any dignity, it would have stayed down for the count and admitted defeat; but like some bizarre whack-a-mole or zombie it keeps stumbling back to its feet, wanting to fight again. This… read more "Colloidal Silver, Smurfs, and Ebola"
A brief guide to a popular alternative system of remedies based on a nineteenth-century concept that has no scientific validity. In 1800, conventional medicine was a disaster. Doctors weakened patients with bloodletting and purging, they poisoned them with mercury and other harmful substances, and they often killed more patients than… read more "An Introduction to Homeopathy"
Sandra Quincy writes from Australia to tell us about her successful anti-quackery activities “down under.” I thought that you might be interested in the success that I have had with getting a magnetic product removed from sale in Australia. It all started when a Century Mail booklet fell out of… read more "Australian Mum Singlehandedly Defeats Sex Magnet Advertiser"