Search Results for "Headline vs study"
Headline vs. study: Predicting, preventing and other clickbait
Predicting and preventing. These are powerful words that hold strong appeal for most of us, especially when it comes to our health. But the reality is this: There are very few diseases that can be predicted and prevented. Try to name just one and you’ll see that it’s rarely, if ever, possible. And yet we […]
Headline vs. Study: Using cancer as clickbait
Using cancer as clickbait is ubiquitous and worrisome. It’s one thing to highlight studies that represent genuine progress, and quite another to write hopeful headlines about studies that are clearly not ready for prime time. Such is the case with 4 of the stories we feature below. It may seem like too widespread a problem […]
Headline vs. study: Promises for your heart, brain, and the common flu
This edition of Headline vs. Study focuses on two recurrent problems we see in both news stories and news releases. First, the prevailing assumptions that either new technology (like using stem cells for a common knee ailment), or more technology (like combining two heart scan techniques) are automatically superior to the existing approach. Although that sometimes […]
Headline vs. study: Sometimes fishy, sometimes pulling a rabbit out of a hat
How likely are you to believe one of the following: That a study in fish might hold the key to preventing Parkinson’s? That a study in rabbits might help us prevent HIV from spreading? A brain scan could pick up mental illness? I’m betting you’re skeptical. And you should be. But get this: all three […]
Headline vs. study: If only health news headlines would …
If only jolts of electricity to my brain could make me less forgetful. If only mice and baby pigs could read; or, at least, learn which oils and infant formulas are good for them. If only headlines — like those we feature below — would stop misleading people. Especially when it comes to common health […]
Headline vs. study: The unbearable heaviness of false hope
Here’s a perfect storm. Take several common diseases that affect millions of people — like antibiotic-resistant infections, Alzheimer’s disease, major depression and bipolar disease — and then write headlines about recent (or old!) studies on these illnesses that hint at hope. But then, in the ensuing article, don’t give your readers evidence to support your […]
Headline vs. study: Stem cells ‘slow aging’ and ‘rejuvenate’ old hearts
A 2014 analysis by the Media Insight Project found that about 6 out of 10 Americans admit they did nothing more than scan the headlines in the past week. And that’s just the people that admit it. Then, last summer, French and American researchers found that nearly 60 percent of links shared on social media had never been clicked […]
Headline vs. study: boxes for your baby, blueberries for your brain
We continue our regular series looking for clear and compelling disconnects between what a headline highlights, and what the referenced study is really about. As you will see below, this past month ended up to be a smorgasbord of food and nutrition stories. Not surprising really. Time and time again we’ve found this to be a genre of health […]
Headline vs. study: Cancer breath, common weeds, and coffee forever!
This is our third go-round looking for disconnects between what a headline implies or emphasizes, and what the substance of the referenced study really is. And we are beginning to see some themes that almost invariably raise our eyebrows, such as headlines that make factual claims from what are clearly preliminary results. Or headlines that–usually in a […]
Headline vs. study: Bait and switch?
We all do it in journalism. We are taught to write a headline that a) captures what the story is about, and b) captures the reader’s attention. Nothing wrong with that. Where the problem comes in is if the headline misleads or misinforms. And, as is so often the case with healthcare topics, that sort […]4
Headline vs. study: A battle where readers often lose
The quest for balance in a health news story can fail before the first sentence if the headline isn’t appropriately calibrated. With that in mind, I looked at news stories and releases that we reviewed over the past month and compared the headline message with that of the study on which the news is based. […]3/15/2012
Headlines don’t help on prostate cancer screening study: “reduces death” vs. “isn’t saving lives”
An updated analysis of the European Randomized Study of Screening for Prostate Cancer, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, is receiving a lot of news attention. And the competing, conflicting headlines are as clear as mud. In one corner, wearing the black-and-white trunks, and weighing in with a predominantly positive message: MSNBC goes […]
Is vitamin C a remedy for smoking during pregnancy? Too soon to tell based on preliminary study
The news release suggests results from lung tests in infants can predict future lung health. But the research can’t yet tell us that vitamin c use in pregnancy will result in any changes in lung health later on.
Vitamin C May Reduce Harm to Infants’ Lungs Caused by Smoking During Pregnancy
Observational study can’t prove surgery better than more conservative prostate cancer treatment
But the release did a nice job of quantifying what researchers found and describing the harms of more aggressive prostate cancer treatment.
Combo therapy of prostatectomy plus radiotherapy may improve survival in prostate cancer
Do wellness programs work? A unique study does much more than offer a possible answer
If you’re one of our regular readers I’ll bet your ears echo from hearing us bang these drums over and over: When OBSERVATIONAL STUDIES find an association between two things it does NOT mean one thing CAUSED the other thing to happen. The gold standard of evidence-based medicine is confirming or refuting findings via multiple […]