How scientists are fighting back against hidden biases in medical research

My article on scientists fighting back against hidden and misleading clinical trial research has been published on one of my favorite web magazines, the Pacific Standard/ pacificstand. Check it out.

And here is an excerpt:

Most of us who take a medication expect our doctor to prescribe it based on evidence. But it turns out that basic assumption is often incorrect.

In fact,many clinical trials of medical treatments—particularly negative ones—never make it to publication in academic journals, which doctors consult to make medical decisions and the media publicize in their health reporting.

[…]Even studies that are published may over-emphasize positive results—a kind of spin that we are conditioned to expect from politicians but not from clinical researchers. All of these practices—and many more variations of misleading—are known as publication bias, and they can seriously skew the evidence doctors and patients use to make health decisions.

(Illustration: Jon Kalish)