February 22, 2018 | Story Review

Guardian trumpets a test to diagnose autism, but where’s the evidence?

Independent experts would have given this story important context.

1 Star

New test can detect autism in children, scientists say

February 22, 2018 | News Release Review

Potential costs, harms missing in plug of alternative MRI for detecting benign breast lesions

One potential harm is that this technique still misses some malignant lesions.

2 Star

MRI technique differentiates benign breast lesions from malignancies

February 22, 2018 | News Release Review 1

Potential harms and source of evidence missing in FDA summary of new blood test for concussion

The actual cost implications of the new test are anything but clear based on this news release.

3 Star

FDA authorizes marketing of first blood test to aid in the evaluation of concussion in adults

February 21, 2018 | Story Review 1

CNN wrongly reports that a new blood test can “help detect concussion”

This story also missed an opportunity to point out other ways to reduce unneeded CT scans.

3 Star

FDA approves first blood test for concussion

February 19, 2018 | Story Review

ABC downplays gloomy context in reporting ‘remarkable’ BACE1 finding for Alzheimer’s

This story buoyantly reports on a finding that amyloid plaque can be reversed in mice but misses potential harms and an announcement about an aborted BACE1 trial in humans just a day earlier.

1 Star

Alzheimer's disease reversed in mice, offering hope for humans, new research shows

February 15, 2018 | News Release Review

NIH recap on ‘brain disease test’: strong on study results, but lacks clarity on patient benefits

News releases about new diagnostic tests will be read by patients and their families and should strive to discuss the impact of early diagnosis, beyond the potential benefits for research.

3 Star

NIH scientists adapt new brain disease test for Parkinson’s, dementia with Lewy bodies

February 15, 2018 | News Release Review

Research recap says medical cannabis safer than opioids in elderly but the study included no such comparison

The two major outcomes measured in this study (pain control and quality of life) were measured using questionnaires which are highly subjective and difficult to reproduce. There was no control or comparison group.

1 Star

Medical cannabis significantly safer for elderly with chronic pain than Opioids

February 15, 2018 | Story Review

Could this be a perfect example of health news clickbait?

Far more original reporting was needed here.

2 Star

Could this experimental drug stop the flu in 24 hours?

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Tips for Understanding Studies

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Story Reviews

Our team of reviewers applies 10 standardized criteria to news stories that include claims about health care interventions. ~2,000 reviews published.

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News Release Reviews

We systematically evaluate the quality of health care-related news releases by journals, medical centers, drug/device makers, others.

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Blog

Wide-ranging exploration of issues in journalism, journal publishing, health care PR, advertising and marketing. Some opinions - publisher Gary Schwitzer's & others'.

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