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"Experts" embarrass themselves with uncritical praise for CBT schizophrenia study with null results

Discussion in 'Other Health News and Research' started by Dolphin, Feb 6, 2014.

  1. Dolphin

    Dolphin Senior Member

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    James C. Coyne is a research psychologist who isn't afraid to speak his mind.

    Here's a tweet of his today:
    I haven't looked at this study myself. And don't have any opinion about the efficacy or otherwise of CBT for schizophrenia. But I thought the odd person might find this of interest given the role the Science Media Centre has played in ME/CFS matters.

    e.g.
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  2. SOC

    SOC Moderator and Senior Member

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    "Oh yes, my particular therapy (for which I am going to charge you lots of money) works magnificently for many and diverse serious illnesses. There is no need for a physical explanation for why it works because I have lots of anecdotal evidence to show that it really works."

    Do these people even listen to themselves? :rolleyes:
  3. minkeygirl

    minkeygirl Senior Member

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    The stupidity is mind boggling.
    Valentijn, Wildcat and xchocoholic like this.
  4. biophile

    biophile Places I'd rather be.

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    http://www.sciencemediacentre.org/e...reatments-for-chronic-fatigue-syndromeme-2-2/

    Wow, one would think the PACE Trial was a double-blind placebo-control trial or something, one which did not give more optimistic expectations and conditioning to some groups over others, and which actually showed clinically significant improvements in objective measures rather than just subjective measures, and one which did not loosen the goalposts mid-trial and/or post-hoc when the researchers realized it might not pan out as expected or saw the disappointing data.

    First class evidence requires first class methodology. The PACE Trial was neither. And LOL at the "huge amount of checking and cross checking". How did all the schoolboy errors and misleading commentaries get through then?
    Last edited: Feb 6, 2014
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  5. biophile

    biophile Places I'd rather be.

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    More about the CBT for schizophrenia trial can be found here, including links to the full text:

    http://www.thementalelf.net/treatme...ics-for-people-with-schizophrenia-or-does-it/

  6. Firestormm

    Firestormm Guest

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    Esther12 likes this.
  7. Esther12

    Esther12 Senior Member

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    Yeah, that's it.

    Dodgy headline. I'm really surprised by the way in which people seem to feel so little shame in making hyped claims about treating a condition as serious as schizophrenia. I think I had assumed that the dodginess around CFS was related to the fact that it was seen as a joke condition - maybe not?
    Last edited: Feb 6, 2014
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  8. Bob

    Bob

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  9. Firestormm

    Firestormm Guest

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    First - I know why I am up at this godawful hour - but I can't be the only Brit who had an argument with the bedroom wall! :)

    Second:

    Struck me as quite funny, Bob given the topic under discussion. But then I realised I was probably being insensitive or somesuch. But it's so early and I am in pain, so I have forgiven myself :)

    I think to be fair the Beeb are only quoting 'experts'. And that's ever the trouble with all science really and medicine. All dependent on opinions and interpretations especially when the evidence base allows for such potential abuse.
  10. Bob

    Bob

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    I don't think we should be fair to the BBC! By blindly regurgitating duff press releases they are discriminating against patients. (And they are supposed to be a public service broadcaster.) When the spotlight is on them (such as with the issue of climate change), then they don't blindly regurgitate vested interests, and they don't promote opinions or small studies as fact.

    The BBC should do better journalism, and they shouldn't quote study results out of context, and without interpreting the results. And they should not use stupid misleading headlines. It surely can't be impossible for the BBC (it has thousands of journalists, with an enormous news budget) to have a health editor who is able to carry out a basic interpretation of study results, or who is able to cross-reference with other information, or who is able to seek alternative opinions (from scientists or patient advocates). They can surely afford a health editor who does more than simply regurgitate press releases from the SMC or other vested interests!
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2014
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  11. alex3619

    alex3619 Senior Member

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  12. Bob

    Bob

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    I like to think that that things aren't quite that bleak (even if I'm deluding myself.)
    I think that (overall) democracy, science, and society are improving over time, it's just that they started from a very poor state.

    If we think about Europe during the 1800's (i.e. Victorian times), democracy, science and society were far from perfect.

    Women didn't have the vote, there was little democracy for the masses, science and medicine were in their infancy, and people were vulnerable to poverty, exploitation and even slavery. Not to mention the fact that Britain had an Empire and was happy to invade countries and oppress the peoples with violence.

    (Sorry, slightly off-topic!)
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2014
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  13. alex3619

    alex3619 Senior Member

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    I don't think the decline is inevitable, only that it is happening. Against this we have a rise in participatory democracy, driven by modern communications. Yet now big business is trying to fight back, by restricting much of the net to a use pays model. Grrrrr .....
  14. MeSci

    MeSci ME/CFS since 1995; activity level 6

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    Don't be silly - they have more important things to spend money on, like huge salaries for 'celebrities'. :rolleyes:
    Bob likes this.
  15. MeSci

    MeSci ME/CFS since 1995; activity level 6

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    I'm guessing that you are making the common error of confusing schizophrenia with dual/multiple personality disorder.

    As a patient group with another seriously misunderstood and misrepresented illness, I think we should be careful to avoid such misunderstandings.
  16. MeSci

    MeSci ME/CFS since 1995; activity level 6

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    I don't think they often get copy from experts. It is commonly provided to them by the notorious Science Media Centre.
  17. alex3619

    alex3619 Senior Member

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    Experts who work for large institutions also have their comments frequently sent by the public relations people, as a press release. These press releases are often hyped up.
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  18. MeSci

    MeSci ME/CFS since 1995; activity level 6

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    I had a little 'war of words' with an academic at my uni who denied that he had ever made certain exaggerated claims about the relevance of his work to a particular illness, when I in fact had cuttings from the uni and/or student magazine and uni annual reports, in which he was quoted as doing precisely that. When I quoted these back to him, he stopped replying, so I don't know whether or not the words had in fact been his.

    It was, however, gratifying when the claims were absent from future reports, having been made for years.

    It's worth challenging things even when attributed to 'experts'. It's surprising what impact just one challenge can have.
    Valentijn, Bob and alex3619 like this.
  19. Marco

    Marco Old blackguard

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    Indeed Alex

    As someone who used to have to rely on the 'press office' for public pronouncements it paid to keep an eagle eye on them to avoid unsubstantiated 'spin'.

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