Covid-19 Tests: Can You Trust the Results?

If your Covid-19 test was negative, can you breathe a sigh of relief? What if it’s a false negative? If it was positive, is that reliable evidence of infection or might it be a false positive result? How trustworthy are these tests? As with so much in science, the answer is complicated; it’s not a

A Test For Earlier Diagnosis Of Autism? Not Convincing

[Este artículo está disponible en español. La traducción al español apareció por primera vez en la revista Pensar.] Autism is diagnosed on clinical grounds by observing the child’s behavior. There is no blood test or any other objective test to diagnose it. But that hasn’t stopped people from claiming to have found one. Among other

¿Test para un diagnóstico temprano de autismo? No es convincente

[This article is also available in English. Thanks to Pensar for the Spanish translation.] El autismo se diagnostica por motivos clínicos al observar el comportamiento del niño. No existe un análisis de sangre ni ninguna otra prueba objetiva para diagnosticarlo. Pero eso no ha impedido que la gente afirme haber encontrado uno. Entre otros candidatos,

A Skeptical Look at Screening Tests

  I’m going to follow Mark Crislip’s example and recycle my presentation from The Amazing Meeting last week, not because I’m lazy or short on time (although I am both), but because I think the information is worth sharing with a larger audience. We’ve all had screening tests and we’re all likely to have more of them,

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