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snake oil

This tag is associated with 18 posts

Dr. Oz is a TV version of Woman’s World magazine

I was standing in the checkout line at the grocery store (which was especially long as it’s Thanksgiving week and the store was packed) when my eye wandered over to the magazine rack and I caught a glimpse of Woman’s World. You know the magazine with the tabloid look  (weird-coated-not-quite-newsprint feel to the paper, bright … Continue reading

Emu oil, schmaltz is the new cure for everything!

Emu oil is making the rounds (again) as a cure for just about everything. Those who sell it bolster their claims with technical sounding but medically imprecise terms such as “anti-inflammatory properties” and “natural healing” (what is unnatural healing?). Even the New York Times has been in on the emu oil action with an article … Continue reading

9 Diagnostic Signs of Snake Oil

Don’t just blame Jenny McCarthy for the measles outbreak, blame Dr. Bob too

Measles is on its way to an all time high. In 2000 Measles was eliminated (meaning some travelers from areas with low vaccine penetration might arrive in the US with the disease, but no case came from US), but has been slowly creeping back. Since 2008 this has been more than a trickle. Let’s put the … Continue reading

Jenny McCarthy is still anti-vaccine despite what you may have learned today on Reddit

Yesterday the “news” was Jenny McCarthy had abandoned her medical degree from the University of Google, embraced science, and stated some version of vaccines are helpful and that her son never really had autism. My twitter steam was broiling with people retweeting an article from Radar Online making this claim (the link is now dead), … Continue reading

Is Nerium a toxin, snake oil, or an anti-aging marvel?

NeriumAD is a topical cream (sold by multi level marketing) that claims to be a “true breakthrough in anti-aging skincare.” The efficacy (and hopefully safety) studies quoted by the manufacturer were conducted by ST&T Research and have not been submitted to any peer-review publication listed in PubMed. Keep in mind that I use the term study … Continue reading

Is thermography a valid tool for breast cancer screening or snake oil?

Thermography uses heat sensitive infrared cameras to image the body and measure heat emission. Solid tumors, even when they are tiny, have an increased blood flow and inflammation compared with non cancerous tissue. Theoretically this could lead to a thermal gradient between a cancer and the surrounding non cancerous tissues. Some animal studies indicate that … Continue reading

Tubal ligation does not cause early menopause: beware the hormone “experts”

Hormones are peddled by many practitioners as well as by the Goddess of estrogen herself, Suzanne Somers, as the fountain of youth. However, if hormones were actually proven to be that wonderful/amazing/effective/risk-free via evidence based medicine, well, uh, everyone would be dishing them out like candy. While there definitely are specific instances where hormone replacement … Continue reading

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