Health News Review
  • Jan 5 2011

    A crystal ball for the spine

    Spines are not the only thing bent out of shape in this one-sided report about a scoliosis test being developed.

  • Mar 27 2013

    Simple Breath Test Might Diagnose Heart Failure

    News editors should have taken a hint from the editors of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology who gave this research space for only a brief report, not thinking it worthy of a full-length article. The story exaggerates the importance and mischaracterizes the results of the study.

  • May 15 2009

    New Test Aids Prognosis for Colon-Cancer Patients

    Perhaps the most troubling example yet of early reporting of abstracts released far in advance of the American Society of Clinical Oncology meeting. Read this review to see why this is a big issue.

  • Oct 15 2007

    Diagnosing Alzheimer’s

    Researchers at Stanford University report a possible breakthrough in identifying people who are at risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease.

  • Feb 9 2012

    Tiny electrical shocks to the brain enhance memory: study

    As with the HealthDay story on this research that we reviewed, readers of this story get a good dose of caveats and cautions along with the suggestions that electrical brain stimulation might someday “have implications” for treatment of Alzheimer’s disease.


  • Aug 9 2010

    Spinal Fluid Test May Diagnose Alzheimer’s

    A sober account, giving readers a summary of key results and expert comments characterizing the test as an advance without leaping to premature judgments about using such a test to predict Alzheimer’s risk in people with normal memory function.  Small but significant improvement over NYT story.

  • Jan 6 2010

    New Brain Scan May Predict Alzheimer’s

    The headline trumpets an advance in Alzheimer’s Disease detection but based on the study that’s a dubious projection. Read the full review to see why.

  • Apr 21 2006

    Research: Healthy diet cuts risk of Alzheimer’s

    People who followed a Mediterranean-style diet were up to 40 percent less likely than those who largely avoided it to develop Alzheimer’s during the course of the research, scientists reported.

  • Mar 24 2008

    At-home gene test stirs up debate

    Dr. John Kelsoe, a prominent psychiatric geneticist at the University of California, San Diego, began selling bipolar genetic tests over the Internet last month for $399. 

  • Jul 16 2012

    A New Check for Heart Problems

    We’ve said it before and here’s a fresh example: when a story describes a “simple blood test…easily done” get out the sniff test.  Fewer than 20 words of an 854-word story even hint at the debate and the controversy surrounding this test.

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