Behind the Headlines

Your guide to the science that makes the news

High UK child death rates unfairly blamed on GPs

Thursday Mar 28 2013

UK 'worst in EU' for child deaths

"Almost 2,000 British children a year die from 'avoidable' causes because family doctors lack training in paediatric care," The Independent alarmingly claims. The story comes from a review of health services for children across 15 countries...

Social isolation increases death risk in older people

Tuesday Mar 26 2013

Isolated older people have increased death risk

"Social isolation is associated with a higher risk of death in older people regardless of whether they consider themselves lonely," BBC News has reported. Previous research has suggested that people who have limited social contact are...

Are benefits of telehealth care worth the cost?

Friday Mar 22 2013

Benefits of telehealth care 'not worth the money'

‘NHS remote monitoring costs more’ BBC News reports after the publication of a new study looking at the cost-effectiveness of telehealth. Telehealth involves using technology to enable healthcare professionals to remotely monitor…

Survey finds 97% of GPs prescribe placebos

Thursday Mar 21 2013

97% of GPs admit to prescribing placebos

"Most family doctors have given a placebo to at least one of their patients," BBC News reports. The news is based on a large survey of UK GPs...

'Bug busting' properties of honey assessed

Monday Mar 18 2013

Manuka honey could be 'superbug buster'

“You won't bee-lieve it! Could manuka honey beat drug-resistant superbugs?” asks the Mail Online website, prompted by a new study into the bacteria killing potential of honey. The study looked at the effects of different types…

Early treatment may hold key to HIV 'functional cure'

Monday Mar 18 2013

New claims about 'functional cure' for HIV

BBC News reports that one in 10 people diagnosed with HIV who receive early treatment could be 'functionally cured'. The news is based on a French study that found that 14 people achieved a functional cure three months after they started treatment...

Metastatic breast cancer blood test performs well

Thursday Mar 14 2013

'Liquid biopsy' hopes for breast cancer care

A blood test to see how well women are responding to breast cancer treatment could be on its way, The Daily Telegraph reports. It describes the test as a 'liquid biopsy'…

Waking under anaesthetic may be rarer than thought

Wednesday Mar 13 2013

Now extremely rare to wake under general anaesthetic

'Surgery shock' announces the Daily Mirror, warning that, '150 patients woke up during operations last year and many couldn't alert the doctor.' It's unsurprising that a tabloid headline plays on our nightmares...

Sperm quality may be lower during summer

Tuesday Mar 12 2013

Sperm quality lowest during summer

“Trying for a baby? Now’s the best time: Men have healthier sperm in winter and spring”, reports the Mail Online. While the Mail’s report is broadly accurate, the news only really applies to men from couples having trouble conceiving…

UK position worsens in 'early death league'

Tuesday Mar 5 2013

UK falling behind in 'early death league'

“The UK is lagging behind progress by similar countries on many indicators for ill-health” BBC News reports, based on a potentially influential study which generated a wide range of media coverage…

What is Behind the Headlines?

What is Behind the Headlines?

We give you the facts without the fiction. Professor Sir Muir Gray, founder of Behind the Headlines, explains more...

Miracle Foods: myths and the media

Each day there's a new crop of possibly life-changing headlines about how food affects our health. Read our report on the health properties of food

Clinical trials and medical research

Clinical trials explained, including how to take part in one and why medical research is important

Video: clinical trials

In this video, find out about clinical trials, what they involve and who can take part in one.

Atlas of risk

NHS Atlas of Risk

Compare cause of death and health risks based on age, sex and where you live

Strength and Flex

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