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Hypothesized benefit from integrative treatments for veterans’ chronic pain fails to materialize

Science-Based Medicine - April 12, 2018 - 1:00am
Researchers hypothesized that chiropractic, acupuncture and massage would benefit veterans with chronic pain. Their results said otherwise.
Categories: Science

Adding Sensation to Robotic Limbs

Science-Based Medicine - April 11, 2018 - 8:03am
Recently scientists have managed to stimulate the brain in such a way that approximated some of the sensations of a natural limb in a paralyzed subject. No, they did not regain sensation, but the research is a powerful proof of concept. It shows that it is possible to produce natural-feeling sensation through electrical stimulation of the cortex, an important step for brain-machine interface research.
Categories: Science

Modern Reflexology: Still As Bogus As Pre-Modern Reflexology

Science-Based Medicine - April 10, 2018 - 3:00am
Reflexology has no basis in science. It is a belief system based on imaginary connections between spots on the skin and internal organs.
Categories: Science

Another pebble in the quackademic integrative avalanche

Science-Based Medicine - April 9, 2018 - 3:19am
We've documented the infiltration of quackery into academic medicine through the "integration" of mystical and prescientific treatment modalities into medicine. Here, we look at a pebble in the quackademic avalanche. Is it too late for the pebbles to vote?
Categories: Science

Science-Based Satire: NASA Teams with NCCIH to Study Alternative Medicine in Space

Science-Based Medicine - April 6, 2018 - 7:00am
Are NASA and the NCCIH working together to study reiki in space? It sounds plausible I know, but this isn't even remotely true. It's satire. Enjoy!
Categories: Science

Border Trilogy Part 2: Hold the Line

Radiolab Podcasts - April 6, 2018 - 1:31am

Border Trilogy: 

While scouring the Sonoran Desert for objects left behind by migrants crossing into the United States, anthropologist Jason De León happened upon something he didn't expect to get left behind: a human arm, stripped of flesh.

This macabre discovery sent him reeling, needing to know what exactly happened to the body, and how many migrants die that way in the wilderness.  In researching border-crosser deaths in the Arizona desert, he noticed something surprising. Sometime in the late-1990s, the number of migrant deaths shot up dramatically and have stayed high since. Jason traced this increase to a Border Patrol policy still in effect, called “Prevention Through Deterrence.”

Over three episodes, Radiolab will investigate this policy, its surprising origins, and the people whose lives were changed forever because of it.


Part 2: Hold the Line:

After the showdown in court with Bowie High School, Border Patrol brings in a fresh face to head its dysfunctional El Paso Sector: Silvestre Reyes. The first Mexican-American to ever hold the position, Reyes knows something needs to change and has an idea how to do it. One Saturday night at midnight, with the element of surprise on his side, Reyes unveils ... Operation Blockade. It wins widespread support for the Border Patrol in El Paso, but sparks major protests across the Rio Grande. Soon after, he gets a phone call that catapults his little experiment onto the national stage, where it works so well that it diverts migrant crossing patterns along the entire U.S.-Mexico Border.

Years later, in the Arizona desert, anthropologist Jason de León realizes that in order to accurately gauge how many migrants die crossing the desert, he must first understand how human bodies decompose in such an extreme environment. He sets up a macabre experiment, and what he finds is more drastic than anything he could have expected.

This episode was reported by Latif Nasser and Tracie Hunte, and was produced by Matt Kielty, Bethel Habte, and Latif Nasser.

Special thanks to Sherrie Kossoudji at the University of Michigan, Cheryl Howard, Andrew Hansen, William Sabol, Donald B. White, Daniel Martinez, Michelle Mittelstadt at the Migration Policy Institute, Former Executive Assistant to the El Paso Mayor Mark Smith, Retired Assistant Border Patrol Sector Chief Clyde Benzenhoefer, Paul Anderson, Eric Robledo, Maggie Southard Gladstone, and Kate Hall.

 Support Radiolab today at Radiolab.org/donate.



Categories: Science

St. John’s Wort for depression – A herbal remedy that works?

Science-Based Medicine - April 5, 2018 - 8:04am
St. John's wort is a herbal remedy that appears to be effective for the treatment of depression. But how does it compare to antidepressants?
Categories: Science

The Pertussis Resurgence

Science-Based Medicine - April 4, 2018 - 7:52am
A new analysis shows that the resurgence of pertussis is largely due historical patterns of vaccination. This and other data show the importance of full vaccine compliance in preventing returning epidemics of this deadly disease.
Categories: Science

Pseudoscience: The Conspiracy Against Science

Science-Based Medicine - April 3, 2018 - 7:00am
An excellent new book examines pseudoscience in 22 essays by prominent scientists from various fields.
Categories: Science

The Nation indulges in fear mongering about cell phones and cancer

Science-Based Medicine - April 2, 2018 - 9:00am
An article published last week in the Nation likens wireless telephone companies to tobacco and fossil fuel episodes in their tactics of spreading fear, misinformation, and doubt regarding the science of cell phone radiation and health. To produce this narrative, the investigation's authors rely on unreliable sources and cherry pick scientific studies, ignoring the scientific consensus that cell phone radiation almost certainly doesn't cause cancer, all the while disingenuously claiming that they aren't taking a position on the health effects of radio waves.
Categories: Science

Cell phones and cancer: random chance in clinical trials

Science-Based Medicine - April 1, 2018 - 11:00pm
The full results of the National Toxicology Program's study of cell phones and cancer are finally in. They are somewhat complicated, but ultimately do not support the idea that cell phones can cause cancer.
Categories: Science