Behind the Headlines

Your guide to the science that makes the news

Hormone drugs can cut breast cancer

Tuesday Apr 30 2013

Hormone drugs can cut breast cancer

“Hormone treatments can cut breast cancer rates in at-risk women by 38%,” reports the Daily Mirror. The news, covered by much of the media, is based on...

MMR catch-up campaign targets a million children

Thursday Apr 25 2013

New MMR catch-up campaign – one million children targeted

The MMR vaccine should be given to all unvaccinated schoolchildren aged from 10 to16 as part of a national catch-up campaign, the government has announced. This MMR vaccination catch-up campaign aims to prevent further…

Statins may help impotence – but only to limited extent

Tuesday Apr 23 2013

Statins may help impotence – but only to limited extent

"Statins could be a cheap and effective treatment for erectile dysfunction," reports the Daily Mail. Sadly, for those affected by erectile dysfunction (impotence), the Mail’s claim is not supported by the evidence presented by the study...

Don't take paracetamol for emotional pain

Monday Apr 22 2013

Don't take paracetamol for painful emotions

"Popping paracetamol could also help treat EMOTIONAL pain," is the surprising suggestion on the Mail Online website. In this study, "emotional pain", also referred to as "existential dread", was taken to be distress experienced...

Can Parkinson's drug help old people decide?

Monday Mar 25 2013

Parkinson drug helps people 'think younger'

"A drug used to treat Parkinson’s disease could help older people make better decisions," the Mail Online website reports after a recent study found that L-dopa, a medication used to boost dopamine levels, aided decision making in some elderly people…

Women who stop taking breast cancer drugs risk early death

Friday Mar 22 2013

Women who quit breast cancer treatment risk early death

“Breast cancer survivors who cut short preventative treatment ‘risk early death’,” The Guardian reports, saying that women who have only three years of preventative treatment rather than five are more likely to die earlier…

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...

Low risk of kidney damage from high-dose statins

Wednesday Mar 20 2013

High dose statins link to kidney damage

Much of the media is reporting the findings of a major study looking at whether 'cholesterol-busting' statins are linked to hospital admissions for acute kidney injury. The Mail Online website warns readers that...

'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...

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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