Evidence-Based

What does it mean really?

There’s many a slip between the evidence for populations and any particular patient! Perhaps evidence-BIASED would be more accurate way to characterize the problems.

Lies, Damn Lies, and Medical Science…

As a marketing slogan Evidence-Based seems to have lost its punch and now serves primarily to remind the public of their increasing distrust of the institutions and institutionalized methods that too often are market-driven distortions of valid scientific process.

The Trump Administration was doing the CDC a favor to caution them not to use the terms evidence based or science based in their press releases.

DMSO capsaicin

Notice DMSO listed as an inactive ingredient. Although it has anti-inflammatory properties no good would come of claiming it does have medicinal value and letting loose the FDA dogs.

“It’s called dimethyl sulfoxide, or DMSO. It’s a sulfur-rich compound that’s actually produced from trees when they’re turned into wood pulp for paper making.

It was once an underground sensation among pro athletes, in-the-know-doctors, and even racehorse trainers… because of its amazing bio-chemical effects… (Mike Wallace of 60 Minutes even did a full-length piece on the health benefits of DMSO in 1982)…

But because it’s not a prescription drug, doctors slowly stopped using it. And it was all but forgotten in scientific circles…”

>“Randomized controlled trials,” which compare how one group responds to a treatment against how an identical group fares without the treatment, had long been considered nearly unshakable evidence, but they, too, ended up being wrong some of the time. “I realized even our gold-standard research had a lot of problems,” he says. Baffled, he started looking for the specific ways in which studies were going wrong. And before long he discovered that the range of errors being committed was astonishing: from what questions researchers posed, to how they set up the studies, to which patients they recruited for the studies, to which measurements they took, to how they analyzed the data, to how they presented their results, to how particular studies came to be published in medical journals.

If between a third and a half of the most acclaimed research in medicine was proving untrustworthy, the scope and impact of the problem were undeniable. That article was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association. (https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2010/11/lies-damned-lies-and-medical-science/308269/)

>John Ioannidis is one of the world’s foremost experts on the credibility of medical research. He and his team have repeatedly shown that many of the conclusions biomedical researchers arrive at in their published studies are exaggerated or flat-out wrong. Yet this is the “science-based evidence” doctors use to prescribe drugs or recommend surgery. According to Ioannidis’ findings, as much as 90 percent of the published medical information relied on by doctors is flawed or incorrect.9

He’s not the only one who has reached this conclusion. In fact, the idea that conventional medical treatments are “scientifically proven” and based on solid science is quite the misnomer. According to 2007 data from the British Medical Journal’s “Clinical Evidence” website, of the 2,500 treatments evaluated, only 15 percent were rated as beneficial. A whopping 46 percent had an efficacy rating of “unknown.”10,11

In other words, nearly half of accepted medical treatments used in general practice were not scientifically proven to work or provide benefit for the patient. Granted, that’s a significant improvement over statistics compiled in 1978, when the Office of Technology Assessment concluded only 10 to 20 percent of medical treatments had evidence to support their use.12 Research also shows that many novel medical treatments gain popularity over older standards of care due mostly to clever marketing, not solid science.

An investigation13 by the Mayo Clinic published in 2013 proved this point. To determine the overall effectiveness of medical care, researchers tracked the frequency of medical reversals over the past decade. Not only did they find that reversals are common across all classes of medical practice, but they too confirmed that a significant proportion of medical treatments offer no patient benefit.

The most telling data in the report confirm that many common medical treatments actually do more harm than good. Of the studies that tested an existing standard of care, 40 percent reversed the practice as it was found to be either ineffective or harmful. Only 38 percent of the studies reaffirmed existing standards.

The remaining 22 percent were inconclusive. This means that anywhere between 40 and 78 percent of the medical testing, treatments and procedures you receive are of no benefit to you — or are actually harmful — according to clinical studies.

Doctors (not to mention drug companies) may bemoan the lack of trust and faith in their offerings, but you certainly cannot claim that it’s an undeserved trend. In 2000, Dr. Barbara Starfield published a study revealing that doctors are in fact the third leading cause of death in the U.S., killing an estimated 225,000 patients annually.17 Her statistics showed that each year:

  • 12,000 die from unnecessary surgery
  • 7,000 die from medication errors in hospitals
  • 20,000 die from other errors in hospitals
  • 80,000 die from hospital-acquired infections
  • 106,000 die from the negative side effects of drugs taken as prescribed

According to a 2012 report by the Institute of Medicine, an estimated 30 percent of all medical procedures, tests and medications may in fact be unnecessary,22 at a cost of at least $750 billion a year. (https://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2018/02/06/declined-trust-in-conventional-medical-profession.aspx)

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