Health News Review
  • Oct 6 2014

    Colons want a piece of the action of Pinktober, too

    About 20 years ago, I learned how the Us Too prostate cancer advocacy group got its name.  One of its founders was admiring breast cancer advocacy efforts, and said or thought, “How about us, too?”  In other words, how about such an advocacy/awareness effort for prostate cancer as well? Earlier this year, there was a [...]

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  • Oct 6 2014

    Do we need an “Awareness” Awareness Month? Or more giant testicles pushed cross-country?

    A TIME magazine opinion column today asks, “When Is ‘Awareness’ Awareness Month?“ The timing of the column is excellent, coming, as it does, in the season of prostate cancer and breast cancer awareness campaigns, Pinktober and Movember et al. Excerpts: ” ‘Awareness’ is a virus that preys on well-meaning minds. It tricks us into thinking [...]

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  • Oct 3 2014

    Breast Cancer Action says Stop the Distraction – others call for a different awareness focus

    As the Green Bay Packers were walloping the Minnesota Vikings on Thursday Night Football last night, the NFL’s “A Crucial Catch Day” campaign for breast cancer – which “is focused on the importance of annual screenings, especially for women who are 40 and older” – was on display at the stadium.  Banners similar to this [...]

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  • Oct 2 2014

    More conflicted, imbalanced prostate information from FOX News

    Conflicted and imbalanced because they let Dr. David Samadi, who runs a robotic surgery center in New York, be the unchallenged expert about “raising awareness for prostate cancer.”  In fact, they let the self-promotional Samadi get away with promoting the #SamadiChallenge – which, if you use that on Twitter, will eat up 16 of your [...]

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  • Sep 15 2014

    USA Today story shows lack of awareness of debate over pre-diabetes classification

    USA Today published a story, “Pre-diabetes, diabetes rates fuel national health crisis.” But the story fails to note one word of caution or skepticism about the definition of pre-diabetes.  Just two months ago, Victor Montori of the Mayo Clinic and John Yudkin of University College London wrote in The BMJ, “The epidemic of pre-diabetes:  the [...]

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  • Aug 24 2014

    Questions about the ice bucket challenge

    A story in the Cincinnati Enquirer, “Ice bucket challenge? Here’s where  your money goes,” is worth a look. It doesn’t make any statement about what’s right or wrong or good or bad about the campaign.  It simply states facts, based on what the reporter found on Guidestar.org.  Excerpts: “The (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis – ALS) association [...]

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  • Apr 4 2014

    “Check ‘em Tuesday” and CoppaFeel campaign strong on promotion, weak on evidence

    Newspapers that get involved in screening campaigns usually demonstrate that they don’t understand the limitations of screening. The latest example is The Sun of the UK, with its “Check ‘em Tuesday” campaign. The Sun has a thing for breasts.  It puts topless women in its regular Page 3 feature.  And, as you see, it cross-promotes [...]

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  • Feb 5 2014

    Dueling diseases…competing cancer causes…my cancer is worse than your cancer

    An article on Salon, ” ‘I wish I had breast cancer’: The latest terrible cancer campaign,” criticizes the Pancreatic Cancer Action organization for its latest “awareness” campaign.   In it, a man says “I wish I had testicular cancer” and a woman says “I wish I had breast cancer.” The author of the Salon piece [...]

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  • Jan 10 2014

    Mr. Balls, Senhor Testiculo, and a man named Cox

    In all the years I’ve written about promotions for various screening tests, I’ve seen some oddities. A porn star and the “Boob Bus Nurse Brigade” promoting mammography A fun-filled giant walk-through colon to promote colorectal cancer screening But those might pale in comparison with the various hairy testicle creatures roaming various regions of the earth. [...]

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  • Oct 15 2013

    Shuffle off to Buffalo for another questionable prostate screening promotion

    By now, any health care consumer with a pulse knows about the tradeoffs involved in prostate cancer screening.  It must have reached most corners of the US that mass prostate cancer screening is not recommended by: the US Preventive Services Task Force the American College of Physicians: “Doctors should inform men aged 50 to 69 [...]

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