Just a quick note to say I was on Start The Week a moment ago.
It’s on Listen Again and downloadable as an mp3 podcast here:
So I’ve got a documentary on Radio 4 at 8pm this evening on incapacity benefit, and it’s a bit of a veer from the norm, because it’s a subject where I’m not entirely sure what I think.
Here’s why I care. I once sat drinking with a group of medics, arguing over what would be the single contemporary medical activity that future generations would look back on with horror, and think, “what, on earth, were you playing at?” Would it be another thalidomide, or perhaps a social issue that doctors blindly and obediently waded in on, like when we unhelpfully tried to electrocute gay people straight. The answer we came up with was “nurse-led prescribing”. Read the rest of this entry »
So tonight at 9pm on BBC Radio 4 (Monday) you can hear the second episode of my two-part miniseries on the placebo effect, one of the most effective and neglected evidence based treatments known to man.
In this show we look at the ethical and practical implications of research into the placebo effect, and discuss whether it’s okay – or even necessary – to lie to patients. The answer, from me at any rate, is “no”. Read the rest of this entry »
I’ve got a whole bunch of mp3’s to post from last year, which I’ll start doing in dribs and drabs. Here’s a talk I gave in Brighton, or rather, here is a recording of my invited “President’s Lecture” at the British Pharmacology Society’s annual conference, which I suspect is a bit of an honour.
The title was “More than molecules – how pill pushers and the media medicalise social problems”, and it’s a romp through tricks and traps which big pharma, quacks, and the media all share. More than that it’s about how attractive we all find it, as a society, to dodge important social, political and personal problems by reducing them to mechanical and sciencey-sounding explanations involving serotonin or fish oils. Read the rest of this entry »
Sorry there was no column last week. I have not been killed in bizarre sexual experiment that went horribly wrong, a problem came up and I was out of earshot on my way to a conference, no excitement this time. Anyway, on my way through Manchester yesterday I came across Prof David Colquhoun having a debate with Felicity Lee, the previous Chair of the Society of Homeopaths. The debate itself was the kind of thing you’d expect and there’s a recording here:
The search for extra terrestrial intelligence continues at SETI, but they also have an excellent podcast at:
This week they had me on as a guest, and I have to say, I think we managed to have an extremely interesting discussion about the medicalisation of culture, risk, homeopathy, the placebo effect, nutritionism, politics, and stuff, in amongst the inevitable “wacky Dr Ben debunks” thing. I seriously recommend downloading the whole thing from the link below, as they have a lot of great guests on the show generally, but here’s my bit, and if you want to subscribe to all audio content on badscience.net as a podcast, just use this link.
Here’s an absolutely cracking SAS lecture by Raymond Tallis, author of Medicine And Its Discontents, a stirring response to everyone who thinks medicine is founded upon arse. I’d highly recommend it, he’s like me but older, cleverer, and considerably less childish.
Here’s an mp3 of my talk today at the Brighton Science Festival, hundreds of people in a massive room, unexpectedly, but only very slightly intimidating:
Or a download here…
That mobile phone noise stops whining a few minutes in, I’ve chopped the beginning off for now, if it’s irritating you then clickety click, Read the rest of this entry »