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Cancer Complementary and alternative medicine Medicine Quackery Skepticism/critical thinking

No alternative medicine ever disappears when shown to be ineffective: The case of laetrile

I recently took a review course in general surgery to prepare for my board recertification examination in December and realized just how much the standard of care had changed in the decade since I last recertified. Then I learned that laetrile is still a thing. If there’s one thing that demonstrates the difference between alternative medicine and real medicine, it’s how no alternative medicine treatment ever goes away, no matter how often it’s shown not to work. Ever.

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Cancer Complementary and alternative medicine Medicine Politics Quackery

The FDA cracks down on bogus cancer “cures.” Will this be the last time this happens until after Trump?

This week, the FDA sent warning letters to 14 companies making unsupported claims that their products can treat cancer. Given the new administration’s determination to deregulate almost everything, but especially the FDA, is this the last time in the foreseeable future that such a crackdown will occur?

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Cancer Complementary and alternative medicine Medicine Quackery Skepticism/critical thinking

Alternative Fake medicine endangers another cancer patient’s life

Kellyanne Conaway inadvertently gave us one of the most descriptive terms ever: Alternative facts. Alternative medicine is a lot like alternative facts in that it is unmoored from reality. Like alternative facts, it can also kill.

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Complementary and alternative medicine Homeopathy Medicine Music Popular culture Pseudoscience Skepticism/critical thinking

Poppa was a Rolling Stone…who likes homeopathy?

Old fart that I am, I’ve been a fan of The Rolling Stones since the mid-1970s, when I was in junior high school. Over the years, I’ve accumulated pretty close to all of their studio albums—and even bought multiple remastered versions of classics like Exile on Main Street and Beggar’s Banquet—and got access to the […]

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

In Memoriam: Wallace Sampson, MD

I have some sad news for my readers today. It’s even sadder given that it’s only been two and a half weeks since I last had to mourn the passing of one of our own, a champion of science-based medicine, a regular commenter of five years, lilady. Unfortunately, this time around, it is my sad […]