Saturday, February 28, 2009

Making the Comparative Effectiveness Research Battle Look Like a Cake Walk

Tom Harkin (D-IA) , who convinced Bill Clinton to appropriate funds for the National Center for Complimentary and Alternative Medicine, is annoyed that the NCCAM keeps finding that many alternative therapies don't work, perhaps because ... many alternative therapies don't work. This is of course the crux of the problem with Evidence-Based Medicine, which, even though it sounds good, has the tendency to tell lots of smart people who make lots of money that what they're doing isn't actually helping anyone. Only the people who do lumbar surgeries or sell slightly better prescription drugs make a lot more money and thus make this fight even harder.

1 comment:

chris said...

Well, things might be different if anyone bothered trying to disprove the hocus pocus around 'conventional' therapies. This week i had a doctor refuse a to prescribe a treatment that is effective for my condition, becuase i hadn't tried a more common treatment. The more common treatment has zero evidence, but its 'conventional' so he felt there was less risk of malpractice that way. The treatment i wanted involved two old drugs, not a new, on patent drug. One negative trial and a treatment is out, unless it is under patent, in which case you just fudge with the number and then do another trial and WOWEVIDENCE.