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Medical controversies

In Uncategorized on February 5, 2010 by Hanna

This week the Lancet has finally retracted its flawed and long since disproven article by Andrew Wakefield that allegedly linked MMR and autism:

 Following the judgment of the UK General Medical Council’s Fitness to Practise Panel on Jan 28, 2010, it has become clear that several elements of the 1998 paper by Wakefield et al1 are incorrect, contrary to the findings of an earlier investigation. In particular,
the claims in the original paper that children were “consecutively referred” and that investigations were “approved” by the local ethics committee have been proven to be false. Therefore we fully retract this paper from the published record.

Too little too late? It’s an issue that causes confusion in the public’s mind and conflated with other beliefs about interventions, nature and causation. I’ve just started subscribing to the RSS feed of the American Council of Science and Health’s Facts and Fears column which is links to other dissections of this case.

If that was controversial how about homeopathy? Mike O’Brien, minister of state for health, says it’s a controversy but others argue he’s just not making a decision about whether the government should fund it on the NHS. Mixed views on doc2doc about the overdose stunt by the 1023 campaign. I never get tired of arguing whilst I care about science.

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