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Science Based Medicine


The Science Based Medicine Blog was started in January 2008 to "scientifically examine medical and health topics of interest to the public". It was originally founded by Dr Steve Novella of The Skeptics Guide to the Universe, along with Drs David Gorski, Harriet Hall, Kimball Atwood and and Mark Crislip. Steve Novella is the Executive Editor and David Gorski the Managing Editor. They accept submissions from non medically trained contributors that they deem relevant to their readers but articles are edited by the editorial team who are all medically trained.

The aim of the site is to promote a science based outlook towards health care as distinct from just an 'Evidence-based' outlook. The editors welcome the traditional focus on evidence but say that though "[Evidence Based Medicine] is a vital and positive influence on the practice of medicine [...] it has its limitations". They go on to add: "Most relevant to this blog is the [EBM] focus on clinical trial results to the exclusion of scientific plausibility. The focus on trial results (which, in the EBM lexicon, is what is meant by “evidence”) has its utility, but fails to properly deal with medical modalities that lie outside the scientific paradigm, or for which the scientific plausibility ranges from very little to nonexistent.". In other words, focusing on limited and inconsistent clinical trials for homeopathy is irrelevant when there is no scientifically tenable reason to think water has 'memory' in the first place.

The site contains reference pages on most of the subjects familiar to skeptics and breaks down homeopathy, acupuncture, chiropractic, vaccines, cancer cures, supplements etc. in a simple and well written style, easily accessible to the layperson. We highly recommend it if you want to keep up with these subjects or need a good science-based reference point. The authors "hope to make the Science-Based Medicine blog a vital resource for consumers, providers, regulators, the media, and anyone interested in quality health care".

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