As predicted, tons of erroneous news stories on BMJ thigh study

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At this point, just about 12 hours after the study was released, I find more than 140 stories online on the misleading “thick thighs protect against heart disease” theme promoted by a BMJ news release. Nary a mention in any of these about association versus causation – or about how an observational study like this has profound limitations. Ah, but they love the “thunder thighs” headlines! That’s all that matters. To hell with public understanding.

Keep reading if you want to see some of the headline examples from around the world.


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Bob Babinski

September 4, 2009 at 10:22 am

I just wanted to let you know that I discovered your blog in the summer and am really enjoying it. Thoughtful and provocative.
While I have a general interest in heath issues, I’m also a part-time instruction at Concordia University’s Journalism School (Montreal) and am in the process of getting more familiar with the blog world.
Ghostwriting is getting a lot of play up here because one of the city’s top researchers was found to have taken favors from a pharmaceutical in writing a paper connected to HRT.
I found a very interesting blog post that you might be interested in (it also appeared as an op-ed in the Montreal Gazette).
http://katejohnsonmednews.wordpress.com/2009/08/30/what-is-medical-ghostwriting-and-can-it-tarnish-professional-editing-don't-throw-the-baby-out-with-the-bathwater/