Categories
Clinical trials Complementary and alternative medicine Medicine Pseudoscience Skepticism/critical thinking

A compound derived from marijuana decreases seizure frequency in children with Dravet syndrome, and there’s nothing “miraculous” about it

There’s a new clinical trial published in the New England Journal of Medicine showing a beneficial effect due to cannabidiol, a chemical isolated from marijuana, on drug-resistant seizures due to Dravet syndrome. Medical marijuana advocates are crowing, “I told you so!” As is usually the case, the real story is more nuanced.

Categories
Antivaccine nonsense Autism Complementary and alternative medicine Homeopathy Medicine Naturopathy Politics Popular culture Quackery

Medical marijuana for autism and autism biomed quackery: One in the same and on the verge of approval in Michigan

When I first started writing about the claims made for medical marijuana and the cannabis oil derived from it, it didn’t take long for me to characterize medical claims for cannabis as the “new herbalism,” as opposed to pharmacognosy, the branch of pharmacology devoted to the study of natural products. The reason is simple. Although […]

Categories
Antivaccine nonsense Complementary and alternative medicine Homeopathy Medicine Naturopathy Quackery

Mike Adams and “natural biopreparedness” against Ebola and pandemics

This one will be much shorter than usual, mainly because I was out late last night for a dinner function at which I was on a panel of breast cancer experts. I must admit, even after having been an attending surgeon for 15 years, it never ceases to make me feel a bit weird to […]

Categories
Cancer Clinical trials Medicine Science Skepticism/critical thinking

Medical marijuana and the new herbalism, part 1

Three months ago, I wrote about how the Cleveland Clinic had recently opened a clinic that dispensed herbal medicine according to traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) practice. As regular readers might expect, I was not particularly impressed or approving of this particular bit of infiltration of quackademic medicine into a major, generally well-respected academic medical center, […]