Health News Review
  • Apr 4 2013

    Drug marketing blamed for increase in ADHD diagnoses

    A Minneapolis-area psychiatrist, Charles Dean, published an opinion piece in the Star Tribune, “Rise in ADHD cases is due to marketing.“ It appeared adjacent to the Strib’s republishing of the NYT op-ed piece, “Diagnosis:  Human,” by Ted Gup – that we blogged about yesterday. Dr. Dean writes: “The 53 percent increase in the diagnosis of [...]

  • Jan 3 2013

    Cyberknife ads – one example of increasing excess of hospital marketing

    We’ve been following claims for Cyberknife “knife-less surgery” for a long time.  See search results from our blog. We’ve seen billboards promoting it in the metropolitan health care market we live in.   And big East Coast medical centers promoting it at subway stops. But only recently did we start noticing many TV commercials promoting [...]

  • Dec 5 2012

    Getting long in the tooth? Toothpaste “selected for people over 50″

    So I’m watching a network TV newscast the other night – the place where old people go to die in their sleep apparently based on the number of old peoples’ drug ads that appear therein – and I must not be there yet because I stayed awake long enough to see a commercial for a [...]

  • Nov 27 2012

    Researchers examine web promotion of female genital cosmetic surgery

    Last week, the online journal BMJ Open published a paper, “An analysis of the content and clinical implications of online advertisements for female genital cosmetic surgery.“  The researchers examined “the breadth, depth and quality of clinical information communicated to women” on 10 popular provider websites that promoted female genital cosmetic surgery (FGCS).  Their conclusion: “The [...]

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  • Nov 16 2012

    Up the nose…in the armpit…what else can you do with testosterone?

    Putting the update at the top:  hours after posting this, I’ve now been told there are, indeed, anal testosterone suppositories. Thanks to Leonore Tiefer for this tip: The newest “female sexual dysfunction drug” hitting the PR waves is a nasal testosterone gel in clinical trials in the US, Canada and Australia. The Dinah Project website [...]

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  • Jul 19 2012

    BMJ/BBC: “Striking lack of evidence” to back up claims for popular sports brands

    A joint news release from the BMJ and the BBC states: (Sorry I can’t do more than post the news release for now.  I’m traveling.) With the biggest sporting event in the world just a week away, a joint investigation by the BMJ and BBC Panorama has found that there is “a striking lack of [...]

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  • Jul 13 2012

    End-of-week roundup: death panels, superbugs, ads for lung transplants & tumor marker screening

    Catch up time: drawing attention to some interesting work published recently: The Poorest of Times: A Shift in “Death Panel” Rhetoric by Diana J. Mason, PhD, RN, in the JAMA forum. How Your Chicken Dinner Is Creating a Drug-Resistant Superbug by Maryn McKenna in The Atlantic. Hospitals Finding Patients on Google, Facebook by Phil Galewitz on [...]

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  • Mar 16 2012

    Urologists sell vasectomies tied to March Madness & The Masters

    USA Today refreshes our memory on what’s becoming an annual rite of spring – vasectomy promotions tied in to NCAA basketball’s March Madness. The pitch is sometimes framed as something like: “This is a good time to have it done so you can recover while spending a couple of days on the couch watching hoops [...]

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  • Mar 12 2012

    Online “Daily Deal” coupon for preventive MRI scan – disease-mongering du jour

    Some of the Groupon, Living Social, Daily Deal offerings are getting a little crazy. Here’s one I got today. The ad copy is astounding: Been dealing with a minor ache or pain? Get it checked out today! Once in a while, you may experience an enlightening moment in your life. This experience may change the [...]

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  • Feb 22 2012

    Questions about scare tactics in health advocacy/awareness campaigns

    Two smart bloggers I follow both wrote recently about scare tactics that bothered them in different ad campaigns. Marilyn Mann wrote, “Heart & Stroke Foundation ‘make death wait’ campaign: effective advocacy or unnecessary scare tactics?” She posted a TV ad, but also this print ad at left, and wrote: “…the print ad… has appeared in a [...]

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