No evidence that vitamin D prevents coronavirus, say experts

Posted 30 June 2020

Nice says topic is under review, but still advises taking supplements for bone health

Haroon Siddique Published on Mon 29 Jun 2020 18.12 BST

The Guardian

No evidence exists to support taking vitamin D supplements to prevent Covid-19, UK public health experts have found.

A rapid review of evidence for claims that the so-called sunshine vitamin could reduce the risk of coronavirus was launched amid concerns about the disproportionate number of black, Asian and minority ethnic people contracting and dying from the disease. Higher levels of melanin in the skin lead to less absorption of vitamin D from sunlight.

However, on Monday, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (Nice) said that, having examined five studies, it had not found evidence to support any benefit from vitamin D with respect to Covid-19.

“While there are health benefits associated with vitamin D, our rapid evidence summary Read the rest

Ketovatru – Major scam – beware!

Posted 29 June 2020

Ketovatru is promoted as a weight-loss product. The company claims that Prof Tim Noakes and Dr Moll endorse this product.

The scam even appears to show Prof Noakes responding to comments – but these are lies – they are not his comments.

Neither Dr Moll nor Prof Noakes have endorsed this product, and the scam artists are using their names and photos without permission. Furthermore, there are many comments on Facebook pointing out that money was taken and no product delivered.

Beware, avoid.

Ketovatru advert

Read the rest

Why do some registered medical practitioners promote CAM interventions?

Posted 27 June 2020

An opinion, published in the Friends of Science in Medicine newsletter.

Why do some doctors, equipped with a science-based degree offering so many opportunities for a satisfying  professional  career,  join  the  ranks  of  raggle-taggle  quacks and  self-proclaimed experts?  These  range  from  outright  shonks  (eg  Gwyneth  Paltrow)  to  the  sincere,  but  befuddled, followers of rigid, ancient, pre-scientific belief systems.

I offer some thoughts on what might or might not answer this question.

  1. Science is hard work
    Learning can be described as ‘shallow’, ‘deep’ or ‘strategic’. Some students manage to scrape through  their  medical  degree  without  a  genuine  understanding  of  biomedical  science.  How  else could one explain their willingness to embrace pseudo-science?
  1. ‘Transactional’ medicine is unsatisfying
    Rather  than  simply  expanding  their  concept  of  good  medical  care,  some  make  a  ‘mind-body’  connection  through pseudo-science. They don’t realise that psychological medicine is as heavily reliant on science as is
Read the rest

Why SECTION27 and TAC are involved in a court case about complementary medicines

Posted 01 June 2020

28th May 2020 Tendai Mafuma and Julia Chaskalson

Those who manufacture or sell complementary medicines often make claims about what these medicines contain and all the diseases they prevent or cure. As the public, we might assume that the claims must be true since some authority would stop the sale of these products if the claims were untrue. Unfortunately that is not something we can take for granted.

A set of regulations published in 2017 tasked the South African Health Products Regulatory Authority (SAHPRA) with regulating complementary medicines – essentially so that the public can have confidence that these products contain what they are claimed to contain and that they do what they are claimed to do. This was an important step forward for the public’s right to know and right not to be misled by quacks.

But yesterday (27 May 2020) the Pretoria High Court Read the rest

TGA initiates court proceedings against MMS Australia and director Charles Barton for alleged unlawful advertising

Posted 01 June 2020

29 May 2020

TGA

The Department of Health’s Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) has initiated proceedings in the Federal Court of Australia in response to the alleged unlawful advertising of Miracle Mineral Supplement (also referred to as Miracle Mineral Solution) (MMS), dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) and other medicines by Southern Cross Directories Pty Ltd trading as MMS Australia.

The TGA recently issued MMS Australia with twelve infringement notices totalling $151,200 for alleged unlawful advertising. The TGA also informed MMS Australia that it must immediately remove all advertisements in breach of the Therapeutic Goods Act 1989 (the Act), and warned that court action may be initiated if the advertisements were not removed within two days.

MMS Australia did not remove the allegedly unlawful advertising. The TGA has therefore initiated court proceedings to obtain an injunction restraining MMS Australia and its director, Charles Barton, from advertising or supplying the relevant Read the rest