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Expert Reviews Cannot be Trusted

Review articles, particularly those written by specialists, tend to be of dubious value, with authors selectively choosing evidence to support their own prejudices.

To prove this, the author analyzed 35 reviews on treatment of type 2 diabetes to evaluate how experts represented the results of the United Kingdom prospective diabetes study.

Only six of the reviews included the finding that tight blood sugar control had no effect on overall or diabetes-related mortality. Just seven mentioned that giving the drug metformin was associated with decreased mortality. Almost half (17) of the reviews did not mention the need for blood pressure control, while only five pointed out that diabetic patients with high blood pressure benefit more from blood pressure control than blood sugar control.

So, one needs to be VERY careful when reviewing the medical literature. This is one of the major purposes of this site, so that you will have another perspective of the medical news that you read on the Net or hear on the major media.

British Medical Journal August 2, 2003 327:269 Free Full Text Article

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