Search Results for "crap"
Toilet Bowl Tuesday: A craptastic race to the bottom for misleading health news
Sunday’s Super Bowl supposedly represented the zenith of professional football: top players, in top form, playing at the top level. Anyone want to give me odds on any of the following news stories — which all showed up in our newsfeed before 9 AM today — winning some sort of Toilet Bowl for health news? […]2
We are in a crisis of crap health news — this week’s reporting shows why
I can’t remember a week that has featured so much useless reporting about studies that are meaningless to the average reader. All the stories featured clickbait-y diet topics like alcohol, chocolate, coffee, and fiber. All were based on observational studies that can only show associations, not cause-and-effect, and which are prone to drawing conclusions that […]
4th annual year-ender on health care PR crap
I don’t think all public relations messages about health care are crap. But most of what I see is. And I can’t stand seeing public relations that may end up hurting the public. The Public Relations Society of America’s code of ethics talks about serving the public good…and “a special obligation to operate ethically.” Hmm. […]6 12/26/2012
3rd annual year-ender on health care PR crap we receive
I’ve been too nice the past two years, calling my year-enders “PR puffery” or “PR stuff.” The stuff I’m writing about here is pure crap. So we’re calling it that. This annual series is about the bombardment of news releases sent to journalists who are trying to decide what is vital information for readers, viewers […]1
Ending our offer of free pre-publication review of PR news releases
We are bewildered. We don’t know what more we can do. There’s never been a service like ours that reviews the news and critiques it to try to improve the public dialogue about health care in the U.S. There’s never been a service that reviews the quality of health care PR news releases. And […]
One woman’s account of spinal cord stimulator skips realities of medical device safety in U.S.
The story also did not mention that the author acknowledged being a paid “advocate” for pain patients, which could present a conflict of interest.
Here’s how one woman used an implant to get some relief from chronic back pain
Shameless Alzheimer’s sales pitch masquerades as solid science
In the annals of unsavory attempts to exploit vulnerable people with false hope, a new campaign to promote an unproven supplement said to slow the progression of Alzheimer’s disease ranks near the lowest of the low. A PR company working with the supplement maker is attempting to attract the attention of journalists with claims based […]4
Too Much Medicine: A small medical conference with a big impact
The Too Much Medicine (TMM) conference is small, but has a potentially huge impact. We cover plenty of medical conferences about heart disease, cancer, and dementia (to name a few) that trigger tsunamis of media coverage because they –quite obviously and understandably — affect millions of people and involve grave outcomes. But the TMM conference, wrapping […]
Cancer misinformation in various media irks breast cancer patients in US & UK
When we recently announced our new series on patient harms from misleading media, I heard from Robert O’Connor, PhD, research head for the Irish Cancer Society. He wanted to add an international perspective to what we were seeing about cancer misinformation in the U.S., and he wanted to help bring more patient voices into the […]
Are the clinical trial results for breast cancer drug taselisib ‘incredibly exciting’ or ‘disappointing’?
The recent publicity around Roche’s drug taselisib is a bit like a choose-your-own-adventure book: Depending on what news release or news article you read, you’d likely have very different conclusions about the drug’s performance in a recent clinical trial. Presented at ASCO18, the annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology, the phase 3 […]3
Erin Andrews’ misdirected cervical cancer screening promo overlooks harms of frequent testing
You may have seen celebrity Erin Andrews’ crusade to promote cervical cancer screening, which draws from a well-worn corporate playbook of hiring celebrities to sell medical interventions. But this time the sponsor, medical technology company Hologic, erred in picking a well-off white television personality to offer advice on a disease that disproportionately kills low-income, minority, […]
5-Star Friday: Breadth and depth
One of the joys of health care journalism is the breadth — and depth — of what we cover. The stories we’ve chosen below reflect that. They range from economics to ethics. From the art of healing to the art of dying. This is great writing. And we’re happy to acknowledge it. If you agree, […]
Salads keep your brain 11 years younger? What you need to know
A few years ago, the website Hairpin.com posted a photo essay that captured a slice of the silliness of some stock photo collections. Under a headline, but with no other words, there were simply 19 photos that matched the headline, “Women Laughing Alone With Salad.” But salad silliness isn’t limited to stock photo images. Last […]
2017 year-ender: Major themes from a year’s worth of news release reviews
We’re closing in on our 500th news release review since launching this service in April 2015. What have we learned? We’ve learned that overall, universities, academic medical centers, hospitals, trade groups and industry are committing many of the same mistakes and omitting the same key information they were in 2015 when we started. We’re dedicated […]
Gene therapy and hemophilia: Washington Post wisely tells readers ‘the study has some limitations’
Whether this particular treatment revolutionizes the landscape for hemophilia B sufferers will remain an open question for some years–and the story should have emphasized that more.