Rapid responses are electronic letters to the editor. They enable our users to debate issues raised in articles published on thebmj.com. Although a selection of rapid responses will be included online and in print as readers' letters, their first appearance online means that they are published articles. If you need the url (web address) of an individual response, perhaps for citation purposes, simply click on the response headline and copy the url from the browser window. Letters are indexed in PubMed.
George's Marvellous Medicine has a very good summation of what EBM should be about:
As George sat there pondering this interesting problem, his eye fell upon the bottle of Grandma’s brown medicine standing on the sideboard. Rotten stuff it seemed to be. Four times a day a large spoonful of it shovelled into her mouth and it didn’t do her the slightest bit of good. She was always just as horrid after she’d had it as she’d been before. The whole point of medicine, surely, was to make a person better. If it didn’t do that, then it was quite useless.
So-ho! thought George suddenly. Ah-ha! Ho-hum! I know exactly what I’ll do. I shall make her a new medicine, one that is so strong and so fierce and so fantastic it will either cure her completely or blow off the top of her head. I’ll make her a magic medicine, a medicine no doctor in the world has ever made before.
Admittedly George's trial was an n=1 study but his grasp of EBM is clear: if it doesn't work, ditch it and get something that does. Archie Cochrane would have been proud of him.