Friday, 28 September 2007

Denial in action: "Acupuncture works"

A recent report (see Bad Science for full details) shows that acupuncture is no more effective than a placebo. This, however, didn't prevent a representative of 'complementary' medicine claiming that the report showed that acupuncture 'works'.

Nothing much unusual here, you might suppose. But David Tredinnick made his claims in the face of the placebo evidence, on BBC radio. Ben Goldacre related the facts of the case to Eddie Mair, on the BBC's PM programme, and David Tredinnick completely ignored the central point of the report - that acupuncture is a load of hooey.

Audio of the PM programme here:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio/aod/radio4_aod.shtml?radio4/pm_tue
Clip starts at about 37 minutes. (This link will probably expire by next Tuesday.)

Download RealPlayer here

Edit: Ben Goldacre's Bad Science podcast now has the clip available for download (also includes some of the mail responses to the broadcast):
http://badscience.net/files/whydoctorsdonttalktothemedia.mp3
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