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Bioethics Cancer Clinical trials Medicine Science Skepticism/critical thinking

Evidence-based medicine guidelines versus patient wishes

There’s a misconception that I frequently hear about evidence-based medicine (EBM), which can equally apply to science-based medicine (SBM). Actually, there are several, but they are related. These misconceptions include the idea that EBM/SBM guidelines are a straightjacket, that they are “cookbook medicine,” and that EBM/SBM should be the be-all and end-all of how to […]

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Cancer Complementary and alternative medicine Medicine Naturopathy Pseudoscience Quackery Science Skepticism/critical thinking

Yet another woman with breast cancer lured into quackery by Ty Bollinger and “holistic” medicine advocates

To say that I, as a cancer surgeon, am not a fan of Ty Bollinger is a massive understatement. He’s not exactly one of my fans, either, but I view the hatred of a man like Bollinger directed at me as a badge of honor. Indeed, if a man like Bollinger didn’t detest me, I […]

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Medicine Popular culture Pseudoscience Quackery Skepticism/critical thinking

Functional medicine (FM) quackery dissected in the mainstream media

Functional medicine (FM) is “make it up as you go along” quackery that combines the “worst of both worlds,” namely the overtesting and overtreatment that can plague conventional medicine plus the quackery “integrated” into “integrative medicine.” It’s rare to see a mainstream outlet get it right about FM, but an Irish journalist pulls it off.

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Cancer Complementary and alternative medicine Homeopathy Medicine Paranormal Pseudoscience Quackery Skepticism/critical thinking

John Horgan is “skeptical of skeptics,” or: Homeopathy and bigfoot versus cancer and the quest for world peace

Contrary to what some of my detractors think, I don’t mind criticism of my viewpoints. After all, if I never encounter criticism, how will I ever improve? On the other hand, there are forms of criticism that are what I would call less than constructive. One form this sort of criticism takes is obsessive repetition […]

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Biology Cancer Clinical trials Popular culture

“Liquid biopsies” for cancer: not ready for prime time

I’ve written many times about how the relationship between the early detection of cancer and decreased mortality from cancer is not nearly as straightforward as the average person—even the average doctor—thinks, the first time being in the very first year of this blog’s existence. Since then, the complexities and overpromising of various screening modalities designed […]