Archives for March, 2008

I love bacon

A reader, who happens to write one of the best-named blogs on teh tubes, pointed me toward an article I never would have seen. This parallels a news story we had here in the States late last year. So, since the story is getting press overseas (albeit late), it’s time to dust off the old…

I don’t usually do this but…

…I really couldn’t resist sharing some fun links. I guess you’d call it blogrolling. First, someone got a hold of the ├╝ber-seekrit Expelled:Leader’s Guide, and started deconstructing it. Next, Steve Novella once again eviscerates a wacky water-woo cult leader at NeuroLogica. Panda Bear, M.D. has one of his usual lengthy must-reads. Orac goes after the…

Hey! Look! Science works! Zetia, not so much.

I love this story because it shows how evidence-based medicine works, even in the face of corporate greed. A while back I told you about a cholesterol study with negative results; that is, it failed to show a drug to be helpful. Intimately entwined with the study design was a potential conflict of interest on…

Malawi to curb fake AIDS healers

The Lancet (Vol 371:9615, March 8, 2008 p. 784) notes that the government of Malawi is working on legislation to prevent traditional and religious healers from deceiving people about AIDS. According to Mary Shaba, a Malawi health official, “when it [the proposed legislation] passes into law, all traditional healers claiming to cure AIDS will be…

Eat it raw! It’s…magic!

In case you haven’t heard, cooking food is bad–at least according to the raw food movement. This movement has developed over the last 5-10 years, and is still fairly fringe, but fad diets, restaurants, stores, and websites devoted to raw foods are flourishing. Let’s see what they’re up to. According to one popular website, we…

The Independent has yet another hysterical article about the potential link between cell phones and brain cancer. And I’ve been asked, what are we seeing here? Is this the early reporting of a potential public health threat? Or is it just more nonsense from a newspaper that wouldn’t know good science if it sat on…

To continue to explain how terribly misguided Mooney and Nisbet are about ignoring denialist campaigns I think it’s time to go over the history of one of the most effective denialist campaigns ever. That is the concerted effort by the major tobacco companies (RJ Reynolds, Brown & Williamson, Lorillard, Phillip Morris, and British American Tobacco)…

Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) are frighteningly common, as highlighted by a study released by the CDC earlier this month. The U.S. is in a unique position: few countries have the resources we do to prevent and treat STDs, and few countries squander such resources so effectively. Let me give you a brief front-line perspective.

Gardasil is a good idea

What if we had a vaccine against cancer? Or even against some cancers? Wouldn’t this be a huge news story, with people everywhere clamoring for the shot? Maybe… Or maybe, some people could find a way to turn that smile upside down. Gardasil, the new vaccine approved for prevention of certain cancer-causing strains of the…

I hate orange urine

Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are a very common problem, especially in women. The link provided offers some very good information, but briefly, women’s urethrae (the tube the urine comes out of), are closer to the rectum than those of men (who have a built-in “spacer”). This allows bacteria from the colon to creep over to…