First post for the month was at Absolutely Maybe, about a major development open access: Europe Expanded the "No Elsevier Deal" Zone & This Could Change Everything.

Then the month was all about trials and systematic reviews of trials.

First up, a new post after a long hiatus at Statistically Funny: Clinical Trials - More Blinding, Less Worry! It's a big topic - and there are so many different ways that bias could creep through the cracks here, that it's worth re-visiting the basics.

With that post, I now had enough background to tackle Clinical Trial Critique 101 at Absolutely Maybe. A recent trial on yoga and depression was a good example to work with there.

Then August was all about the HPV vaccine. A scathing critique of the Cochrane Collaboration's systematic review and meta-analysis got a lot of attention. It shocked me until I dug deeper and discovered how implausible - and sometimes just plain wrong - this critique was. More at Absolutely Maybe - The HPV Vaccine: A Critique of a Critique of a Meta-Analysis.

The conversation after that post made me realize that there were lots of misconceptions about when we would be able to know if the cervical cancer was dropping - and that I didn't really know how the results from the trials would pan out in real life. The result was growing excitement about what this vaccine might be achieving, and a second post - The HPV Vaccine Should be Preventing Cervical Cancer: How Can We Tell Whether It Actually Is?

As this is a continuing saga, I started a post to keep the threads of what happens next together:

The HPV Vaccine & Manufactured Controversy: Tracking the Critique of the Cochrane Review & the Evidence.




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