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Evidence-Based Hearsay: Clinical Medicine’s Fake News–Information Cascades

The article discusses a paper written by Stanford professor, John Ioannidis called “Why Most Published Research Findings Are False”. Believe it or not, in the paper,Ioannidis makes the claim that most published research findings are false due to errors in methodology and bias. He examines a case in which even unsolicited online reviews for a drug, which many people consult, are subject to response bias since people with good results are more likely to write reviews in the same place. As a result, reported drug effectiveness is much higher than clinically tested effectiveness, but the latter is the information that reaches consumers.

But issues in information cascades exist in the clinical world too. The use of observational methods in causal studies in favor of conducting randomized clinical trials results in a host of misinformation in the academic world. That information is then disseminated by academics, private sector scientists, and government officials who trust each other’s “expert” opinions enough to forego their own private information/

 

https://www.acsh.org/news/2017/03/16/evidence-based-hearsay-clinical-medicines-fake-news-10999

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