The dose-response relation is probably linear

BMJ 1995; 310 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.310.6975.325a (Published 04 February 1995) Cite this as: BMJ 1995;310:325
  1. David F Marks
  1. Professor of psychology Health Research Centre, School of Psychology, Middlesex University, Enfield, Middlesex EN3 4SF

    EDITOR,—Richard Doll and colleagues claim a U shaped dose-response curve for mortality and alcohol.1 If valid, their observations have profound implications for health education. Their findings are being widely interpreted as proving that drinking a few drinks every day leads to a longer life than drinking no alcohol at all. Regrettably, the infelicitous design of their questionnaire means that the reported findings are invalid and the conclusions potentially seriously misleading. The questionnaire was faulty in at least three ways: it failed to differentiate subjects who had never been drinkers from former …

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