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Doctor Has New Method To Break Up Kidney Stones

Rating

1 Star

Doctor Has New Method To Break Up Kidney Stones

Our Review Summary

This story allows a single physician to make claims about his method of removing kidney stones. The work is to be published in an upcoming journal article.

It is not at all clear how available this approach to kidney stone treatment is. The story says “After Dr. Portis presents results of his study, he thinks doctors everywhere will want to adopt it. ” But we have no idea how many are using it now, nor is there any independent evidence that anyone else will adopt this approach.

The only mention of cost is this: “Who doesn’t want a far more effective procedure that costs one-third as much?” Cost isn’t specified. Costs of alternatives are not given.

The story lets the physician-researcher say that “his approach has a 95 percent success rate with a single treatment and quicker recovery time. ” But there is no evidence given to substantiate that.

Only a single source is used – the physician who is interviewed. Other kidney stone specialists should have been consulted.

Potential harms are not discussed.

The story felt more like cheerleading than fact-finding.

Criteria

Does the story adequately discuss the costs of the intervention?

Not Satisfactory

The only mention of cost is this: “Who doesn’t want a far more effective procedure that costs one-third as much?”
Cost isn’t specified. Costs of alternatives are not given.

Does the story adequately quantify the benefits of the treatment/test/product/procedure?

Not Satisfactory

The story lets the physician-researcher say that “his approach has a 95 percent success rate with a single treatment and quicker recovery time. ” But there is no evidence given to substantiate that. And there is no comparison with other approaches.

Does the story adequately explain/quantify the harms of the intervention?

Not Satisfactory

There is no discussion of any potential harm from this approach.

Does the story seem to grasp the quality of the evidence?

Not Satisfactory

The story references an upcoming journal article. It inaccurately says it is in the journal Urology. It is actually in the Journal of Urology. The story lets the physician-researcher say that “his approach has a 95 percent success rate with a single treatment and quicker recovery time.” But there is no evidence given to substantiate that.

Does the story commit disease-mongering?

Satisfactory

The lead-in says that “Women who’ve had them have told me that childbirth is less painful and yet 1 in 10 of us will suffer the agony of them.” There is no evidence given to support that anecdote, but we’ll give the story the benefit of the doubt and give it a satisfactory score here.

Does the story use independent sources and identify conflicts of interest?

Not Satisfactory

Only a single source is used – the physician who is interviewed. Other kidney stone specialists should have been consulted. The story says “After Dr. Portis presents results of his study, he thinks doctors everywhere will want to adopt it. ” But the story gives no independent evidence that anyone else will adopt this approach.

Does the story compare the new approach with existing alternatives?

Not Satisfactory

“Smashing stones with sound waves” is briefly mentioned, but written off. No other conventional treatment strategies are discussed.

Does the story establish the availability of the treatment/test/product/procedure?

Not Satisfactory

It is not at all clear how available this approach to kidney stone treatment is. The story says “After Dr. Portis presents results of his study, he thinks doctors everywhere will want to adopt it. ” But we have no idea how many are using it now, nor is there any independent evidence that anyone else will adopt this approach.

Does the story establish the true novelty of the approach?

Not Satisfactory

The procedure apparently uses existing technologies, so it is not clear how novel this is. Also, since no independent source is interviewed – no other kidney stone specialist – there is no context given to allow the viewer to judge the novelty of the idea – only what the interviewed physician says.

Does the story appear to rely solely or largely on a news release?

Not Applicable

The story includes some of the same claims that appear in a news release – about a single procedure being effective in 95% of patients, about cost estimated to be just one third of conventional treatment strategies. But there is no hard proof that the story relied solely or largely on a news release.

Total Score: 1 of 9 Satisfactory

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