Search Results for "problematic PR releases"
Podcast: The polluted stream of health care information
As health care information flows from its source to the general public there are several opportunities for contamination. Who is doing this? And how?
News release labeling to combat a global scourge of exaggerated claims
Even with an unfolding pandemic, there’s no shortage of overreaching public relations news releases to mislead the public. Australia’s University of Queensland announced its researchers would deploy “rapid response technology” to develop a coronavirus vaccine “which could be available worldwide in as little as six months.” (Maybe we should wait six months to see if it, […]
Guardian jumps to conclusions about an Alzheimer’s study that hasn’t even begun
The story’s headline states: “Virtual reality to help detect early risk of Alzheimer’s.” That is misleading. The researchers haven’t even recruited study participants yet, much less conducted the study or analyzed the results.
Virtual reality to help detect early risk of Alzheimer’s
Year-ender 2018: Here’s how we can clean up the polluted stream of health care news
If there’s one thing our project has demonstrated unequivocally during its 12-plus-year run, it’s that many media messages about health care interventions are incomplete, imbalanced, and inaccurate – some of them egregiously so. But how do we restore balance and improve the information reaching the public? That’s a question that can’t be answered without understanding […]10
How some journalists got hooked by fish oil and vitamin D spin
Results of a much-anticipated trial on fish oil and vitamin D generated conflicting headlines last weekend. Some stories declared good news about the popular supplements: Reuters wrote that fish oil “can dramatically reduce the odds of a heart attack while vitamin D’s benefits seem to come from lowering the risk of death from cancer.” The […]
How minimally invasive surgery was spun as the ‘latest and greatest’ for cervical cancer
To understand how minimally invasive surgery for cervical cancer became popular before high-quality evidence was available about its outcomes, consider some rah-rah local news coverage. Back in 1995, for example, The Record of Hackensack, N.J., reported that laparoscopy “made surgery simpler and less painful,” with a doctor calling its tiny incisions a “breakthrough” for cervical […]
Early birds have lower breast cancer risk? What you need to know
Wake me when it’s over. There was a lot of misleading information in news stories this week about a study of sleep traits and risk of breast cancer. It was a complex study to decipher, but instead we got simplistic headlines like this one from HealthDay: “Early Birds May Have Lower Breast Cancer Risk.” That […]2
Our team’s fond farewell for a terrific editor and a great guy
Today is Managing Editor Kevin Lomangino’s final day with HealthNewsReview.org, marking the beginning of the end for our project, which comes to a close in December. Besides Publisher Gary Schwitzer, nobody has had a bigger impact on the site than Kevin, who has written or edited thousands of reviews and blog posts since he joined […]
Serious potential harms and financial conflicts missing in recap of study on vaginal laser surgery for menopausal symptoms
The release fails to mention that the FDA has issued a warning against the use of vaginal laser surgery for menopausal symptoms.
Getting relief from sexual dysfunction and incontinence caused by menopause
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 […]
The art of the non-news release: News you can’t use
Sometimes the most obvious questions are the most important; such as, is a news release newsworthy? I don’t think these three news releases, all published on the same day last week, even come close to qualifying: Enrollment Passes Halfway Milestone in Clinical Trial Evaluating the Effect of an Exclusive Human Milk Diet Including a Specialty […]
University offers muddled summary of dementia study in mice using ‘healing’ sound waves
This news release focuses on a mouse study of an experimental ultrasound therapy for dementia-like condition in mice. It’s also an example of hype over a therapy with no known benefit in humans.
Treating dementia with the healing waves of sound
After canceling an ethically dubious trial, NIH sticks with a muddled message on booze
After a public outcry, the National Institutes of Health recently halted an industry-funded trial to find out whether moderate alcohol consumption promotes heart health. But its advice to the public on drinking remains problematic. Last week a link to the agency’s Rethinking Drinking website was sent to HealthNewsReview.org’s general email as part of a seasonal […]
Knee cartilage transplant said to be as good for older patients as younger ones — but how good is that?
Saying that older patients benefit from the procedure as much as younger patients isn’t really saying much. The release didn’t mention the limited evidence that supports the procedure in younger patients.
Older patients with knee pain may benefit from allograft transplant technique
BMJ’s scrambled message on eggs and heart disease: a recipe for rotten news coverage
[Editor’s note: This post has been updated with a response from BMJ. Scroll to the bottom for details.] BMJ’s public relations team is at it again: putting overstated headlines on news releases about observational nutrition research that can’t support the claims. This time it was on a Chinese study, published in the journal BMJ Heart, […]