A therapy for brain tumors in young children involves deliberately infecting them with a virus. Scary, and is it worth it? In a recent article in the New England Journal of Medicine I read about a novel possibility for treating cancer that I had not been aware of. The study’s title was “Oncolytic DNX-2401… read more "A Desperate Choice"
The Science of Mom: A Science-Based Book about Baby Care
From the author’s website: “Shameless use of cute baby to promote book” When a baby is born, parents are often awed and alarmed to find themselves responsible for this tiny new person, and they desperately want to do their very best to keep their infant safe and healthy. New mothers… read more "The Science of Mom: A Science-Based Book about Baby Care"
Faith Healing Tragedies
Most people have faith that faith can heal. According to a poll published in The Lancet, 79% of adults believed that spiritual faith can help people recover from a disease. In a CDC study, 45% of respondents reported using prayer for health reasons in the previous 12 months. Even doctors are convinced:… read more "Faith Healing Tragedies"
New AAP Policy on Circumcision
Back in 2008, I tried to look objectively at the scientific evidence for and against circumcision. I got a lot of flak from commenters who focused on the ethical issues rather than the scientific evidence. I concluded that the evidence showed small benefits and small risks, and I didn’t advocate either… read more "New AAP Policy on Circumcision"
Suffer the Children
Some of our readers have complained that we pick on alternative medicine while ignoring the problems in conventional medicine. That criticism is unjustified: we oppose non-science-based medicine wherever we find it. We find it regularly in alternative medicine; we find it less frequently in conventional medicine, but when we do,… read more "Suffer the Children"
Breastfeeding Is Good but Maybe Not THAT Good
An article entitled “The Burden of Suboptimal Breastfeeding in the United States: A Pediatric Cost Analysis,” by Bartick and Reinhold, was published in Pediatrics 2010 April 5. According to this news report, it showed that 900 babies’ lives and billions of dollars could be saved every year in the U.S. if we… read more "Breastfeeding Is Good but Maybe Not THAT Good"
Circumcision: What Does Science Say?
Some people think circumcision is mutilation; others want one even if they don’t know what it is. When I was working in an Air Force hospital emergency room one night, a young airman came in requesting a circumcision. I asked him why he wanted one. He said a couple of… read more "Circumcision: What Does Science Say?"