Behind the Headlines

Your guide to the science that makes the news

Almost half of all UK adults may be living with chronic pain

Tuesday Jun 21 2016

"Almost half the adult population is living with chronic pain," the Daily Mail reports. A major new review suggests that around 28 million adults in the UK are affected by some type of chronic pain…

Cranberry juice 'useful' for women with recurring UTIs, claims study

Monday Jun 20 2016

"Drinking cranberry juice could reduce the worldwide use of antibiotics," is the somewhat optimistic headline in The Daily Telegraph. A new study found some modest preventative benefit in women with a history of reoccurring urinary tract infections…

Depression blood test could lead to personalised treatments

Tuesday Jun 7 2016

"UK scientists have developed a blood test to help doctors pick the best drug for patients with depression," BBC News reports, somewhat prematurely. It is currently unproven whether such a test, based on measuring inflammation…

Ten years of hormone breast cancer drugs 'may benefit some'

Monday Jun 6 2016

"Taking hormonal drugs for up to 15 years reduces the risk of breast cancers coming back," BBC News reports. A new study looked at 1,918 postmenopausal women with what is known as oestrogen receptor-positive (or ER+) breast cancers…

Research raises hope of a 'Holy Grail' universal cancer vaccine

Thursday Jun 2 2016

"'Universal cancer vaccine' breakthrough claimed by experts," The Independent reports. Researchers extracted genetic code called RNA from cancer cells, embedded them in nanoparticles to make them appear…

Could statins prevent breast cancer returning?

Thursday Jun 2 2016

"Statins could be used in the treatment of breast cancer," Sky News report. Findings from a new study suggest the potential involvement of cholesterol in breast cancer reoccurrence…

Treatment 'breakthrough' in man with advanced skin cancer

Tuesday May 31 2016

"Skin cancer cure hope for millions as major treatment breakthrough sees man's tumours disappear 'completely'," the Daily Mirror reports. While the headline is premature, the case report does present interesting findings…

Proof opiates are useful for chronic back pain 'lacking'

Tuesday May 24 2016

"Powerful painkillers doled out in their millions are ineffective against back pain," the Daily Mail reports. An Australian review found evidence for the effectiveness of opiate-based painkillers, such as tramadol and…

Review calls for global action to tackle antibiotic resistance crisis

Friday May 20 2016

"Superbugs will kill someone every three seconds by 2050 unless the world acts now," BBC News reports. A review commissioned by the UK government says wide-ranging action is required at a global level to prevent a post-antibiotic future…

Study: 'mini strokes should be treated immediately with aspirin'

Thursday May 19 2016

"People should consider taking aspirin immediately after a minor stroke," BBC News reports. A review of existing evidence found people treated with aspirin after a mini stroke (transient ischaemic attack, or TIA)…

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What is Behind the Headlines?

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