Behind the Headlines

Your guide to the science that makes the news

Angry outbursts may up heart attack risk

Tuesday Mar 4 2014

Angry outbursts may up heart attack risk

'Having a hot temper may increase your risk of having a heart attack or stroke, according to researchers' BBC News reports. US researchers found that people prone to attacks of range had a higher risk of a serious cardiovascular event…

Five-year 'death test' provides few answers

Wednesday Feb 26 2014

Five-year 'death test' provides few answers

A “death test” that supposedly predicts the chance of a healthy person dying in the next five years has been developed by scientists, The Daily Telegraph reports…

Flu jab may cut stroke risk by a quarter

Friday Feb 21 2014

Flu jab may cut stroke risk by a quarter

'People who have the seasonal flu jab care 24 per cent less likely to suffer a stroke' is the encouraging news in The Daily Telegraph. New research appears to suggest that flu makes people more vulnerable to stroke risk factors…

'Boris bikes' may be good for your health

Friday Feb 14 2014

'Boris bikes' may be good for your health

"London's cycle hire scheme has had a positive effect on the health of its users," BBC News reports. So-called "Boris bikes" (named for the "colourful" Mayor of London, Boris Johnson) have led to improvements in both physical and mental health…

Roll-ups 'as hazardous as factory made cigarettes'

Wednesday Feb 12 2014

Roll-ups just as bad as factory-made cigarettes

“Rollies vs Straights: Roll-your-own ‘at least as hazardous as any other type of cigarette’,” reports The Independent. “Roll-ups” (cigarettes made using rolling tobacco and paper), have been associated with poverty…

NICE publishes new draft guidelines on statins use

Wednesday Feb 12 2014

Thousands more should be prescribed statins say NICE

"Millions more people should be put on cholesterol-lowering statin drugs," BBC News reports. Draft guidance from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has recommended that the drugs should be given to people with an…

Sugar intake linked to heart disease deaths

Tuesday Feb 4 2014

Sugar intake linked to heart disease deaths

“Three fizzy drinks per day could triple chance of heart disease,” says The Daily Telegraph. Its headline is based on a major US study showing a link between high levels of sugar consumption and a higher relative risk of dying from cardiovascular disease…

Media hype blood clot risk of birth control pills

Monday Feb 3 2014

Birth control pill blood clot risk hyped by media

“Deadly risk of pill used by 1m women: Every GP in Britain told to warn about threat from popular contraceptive,” reports the Mail Online. Combined hormonal contraceptives (or “the pill”) are in the news after letters were sent to doctors…

Heart failure patients may have higher cancer risk

Wednesday Jan 29 2014

Heart failure patients found to have higher cancer risk

"Heart attacks increase the risk of developing cancer," is the completely inaccurate headline on the Mail Online website. The Mail was attempting to report on a study looking at cancer risk in people with heart failure…

'Good' cholesterol can turn 'bad', study finds

Monday Jan 27 2014

How 'good' cholesterol can turn 'bad'

"Good cholesterol also has a nasty side that can increase the risk of heart attacks," BBC News reports after a US study has suggested that labelling cholesterol either "good" or "bad" is oversimplifying a complex situation…

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What is Behind the Headlines?

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