Believing in Treatments That Don't Work

Dr David Newman considers the example of Beta-Blocker medication use in patients with heart attacks. Studies show that using these medications might make patients with heart attacks go into heart failure, rather than protecting the vulnerable heart. He cites numerous other examples of treatments that make sense by deductive reasoning, but aren't in fact beneficial.

Ideology trumps evidence . . .

Treatment based on ideology is alluring. Surgeries to repair the knee should work. A syrup to reduce cough should help. Calming the straining heart should save lives. But the uncomfortable truth is that many expensive, invasive interventions are of little or no benefit and cause potentially uncomfortable, costly, and dangerous side effects and complications.

Read more on the Well Blog of the NY Times.