Essential oils, stem cells, superbugs and more…

FSM Friends’ News and Articles

The Lung Institute and the stem cell hard sell: “For-profit stem cell clinics charge large amounts of money for unproven and potentially risky treatments, and, although the FDA has recently made moves to regulate them more tightly, as the WaPo story shows, there are many hundreds of these quack clinics throughout the US.”


A Guide to 17 Anti-Vaccination Celebrities: Here is a list of celebrities who think being famous qualifies them to comment on medical practice. The most familiar refrain from these people is “I’m not anti-vax” and then they proceed to explain why they are anti-vax.

It’s sad. None of these people have a medical or scientific qualification. Most are equating vaccination policy with government coercion rather than good public health practice. All we can do is call them out and do our best to promote vaccines.

‘An outrage’: Global measles crisis killed 140,000 people in 2018, WHO says: The measles crisis in Samoa is an anomaly, but trends have been increasing for years. The global burden of measles infection is growing and antivax sentiment is the reason.

Antibiotic resistant superbugs kill 32 plane-loads of people a week. We can all help fight back:  “The number of people dying globally every week from antibiotic resistant infections is equivalent to 32 Boeing 747s full of people. And if that sounds scary, the projections for the future are even scarier.”

More anti-vaccine cherry-picking: A rebuttal to, “Should you be afraid that measles can give you immune amnesia?”:  Anti-vaxxer immunology PhD. Yes there is one, who had a very unimpressive career before finding success catering to the anti-vaccine movement.

She attempts to argue that measles doesn’t cause immunological amnesia. Instead she shows how her work is biased, cherry picked, and doesn’t stand up to reading the scientific literature or basic fact checking.

“She responds to this extremely clear evidence by saying, “So what? When was it ever proven that immunologic memory has anything to do with protection from re-infection?”

This is similar to asking “So whats what? When was it proven that gravity has anything to do with planetary bodies?”

This is the best anti-vaxxers have to offer, and it is not impressive.

Great Moments in Health and Science

The Development of Target Therapy for Breast Cancer. Target Therapy for Breast Cancer: Drugs that target specific mutations present in some cancers individualise treatment and reduce side-effects

Today’s Abused Health Concept

Essential Oils. ‘People think a natural thing can’t harm you’: Essential oil poisonings rise: “The highly concentrated oils have been known to cause symptoms ranging from drowsiness to choking, nausea and seizures. In some people, they can cause rashes and burns when applied topically, even when diluted.”
In 2017-2018, [The NSW Poisons Information Centre] 1177 calls regarding essential oils poisoning were received, with 63 per cent involving a child under the age of 15 being poisoned.

Roughly one in 20 cases occurred through intentional use, with 105 cases (2.4 per cent of calls over the four-year period) described as “misinformed misuse” i.e. a person deliberately ingesting the oil with therapeutic intent.
Dr Rose Cairns from the University of Sydney’s School of Pharmacy, who led the analysis, said, although the oils are most commonly used in aromatherapy, there are concerns a small but growing number of people are ingesting the toxic oils, possibly following recipes posted by wellness bloggers online claiming the oils can be consumed when mixed with water.
“These products are often being promoted by people with low or no qualifications,” she warned.