Tag: epidemiology

A new study reinforces the conclusion that autism is primarily genetic

Last week, the largest epidemiological study of its kind was published and concluded, once again, that autism is primarily due to genes and that the environmental component of autism risk is much smaller. Not surprisingly, once again antivaxers didn't want to hear that message.

/ July 22, 2019

Pee Values: Tapping into large databases to answer an awkward situation in veterinary medicine

A handy research tool has just helped answer some long standing questions about the spaying of female dogs and urinary incontinence.

/ May 24, 2019

Lessons in confounding epidemiology: Household cleaning products, the microbiome and childhood obesity

Do eco-friendly cleaning products prevent obesity? Probably not, and you shouldn't be eating them anyway.

/ March 14, 2019

Are antivaxers “holding science hostage”?

Melinda Wenner Moyer published an article in The New York Times arguing that fear of how antivaxers will react to scientific findings is leading scientists to self-censor. I'm not convinced that this is the case.

/ August 6, 2018

Five steps to add ten years to your life expectancy

A new study identifies five lifestyle decisions that can add over a decade to your life expectancy.

/ May 3, 2018
Smart Phones

The Nation indulges in fear mongering about cell phones and cancer

An article published last week in the Nation likens wireless telephone companies to tobacco and fossil fuel episodes in their tactics of spreading fear, misinformation, and doubt regarding the science of cell phone radiation and health. To produce this narrative, the investigation's authors rely on unreliable sources and cherry pick scientific studies, ignoring the scientific consensus that cell phone radiation almost certainly...

/ April 2, 2018

The influenza vaccine and miscarriages: Much ado about nothing

A study published on Wednesday claims to have found a link between influenza vaccination and miscarriage, and antivaxers are gloating. The study itself suffers mightily from post hoc subgroup analyses on small numbers, so much so that even its authors don’t really believe its results. None of that stopped them from publishing the study, thus justifying "more research" that will almost certainly...

/ September 15, 2017

Alternative medicine kills cancer patients

By definition, alternative medicine has not been shown to be effective or has been shown to be ineffective. Thus, alternative medicine is ineffective against cancer and can best be represented as either no treatment at all or potentially harmful treatment. It is thus not surprising that cancer patients who choose alternative medicine have a higher risk of dying from their cancer. A...

/ August 14, 2017

Diet and exercise versus cancer: A science-based view

Yes, diet and exercise can be useful to prevent some cancers. Unfortunately, they don't prevent all cancers, and the effect size is more modest than often represented. That's not to say that eating right and exercise aren't good. They are, for so many other reasons than cancer. Just don't view them as a panacea for preventing cancer.

/ September 19, 2016

The cost of repealing mandatory motorcycle helmet laws

It’s a seldom mentioned aspect of my professional history that I used to do a lot of trauma surgery in my youth. I did my residency at a program that included a county hospital with a busy trauma program where I saw quite a bit of vehicular carnage and an urban hospital (which has since closed) where I saw a fair amount...

/ January 18, 2016