Minerva

Minerva

BMJ 2002; 325 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.325.7358.288 (Published 03 August 2002) Cite this as: BMJ 2002;325:288

Media spin can completely alter the audience's perception. As one writer says in the International Journal for Quality in Health Care (2002;14:173-4), one British newspaper's interpretation of the Leeds University maternity audit project was “Birth ward errors kill 200 babies: overstretched doctors and midwives are providing substandard maternity care.” But put another way, a different headline about the same project could have been “Massive shift in practice saves 850 babies a year: improvements following introduction of evidence based guidelines and clinical audit are set to continue.”

Children with lower urinary tract infections seem to do just as well in the short and long term with a 2-4 day course of antibiotics as those who take 7-14 day courses. The authors of a systematic review in Archives of Disease in Childhood (2002;87:118-23) suggest that with the increasing prevalence of organism resistance in urinary tract infections to commonly used antibiotics, short treatments should be investigated further.

The pleasant emotions evoked by the tender touch of lovers are triggered by an “emotional touch” system. Doctors found that a Swedish woman who had lost the main touch nerves throughout her body still had a specialised subset …

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