iOS app Android app

David H. Newman, M.D.
GET UPDATES FROM David H. Newman, M.D.
David H. Newman, M.D. is a physician-researcher and a leading expert in healthcare evidence. In his book Hippocrates’ Shadow: Secrets From the House of Medicine (Scribner) Dr. Newman explores the underbelly of modern medicine and the fraying of the patient-doctor bond, using patient narrative and examples of misconstrued research.

Entries by David H. Newman, M.D.

Quiet Fortitude in the ER

(28) Comments | Posted May 5, 2015 | 10:38 AM

In Maureen Dowd's recent piece, "A Stroke of Fate," she describes the case of her niece, Tara, a young and athletic woman who suffered a rare type of stroke caused by a separation of the inner layers of an artery supplying her brain. If Ms. Dowd's account is...

Read Post

Assault on Science

(5) Comments | Posted June 3, 2014 | 5:21 PM

"Will it help me live longer?" 

When patients ponder the lifetime commitment to a statin drug, this is the question they ask. But a very public controversy in the scientific community has recently diverted attention from this central question -- and that just might be on purpose.

In the October 

Read Post

Lurking Truth in Recent Studies

(11) Comments | Posted April 9, 2014 | 3:37 PM

Last month a study of siblings found that breastfeeding conferred no health advantages, while a second study declared older paternal age to be associated with psychiatric problems in children. A third study found no link between saturated fats and heart disease. It was a month of unexpected, and sometimes unsettling,...

Read Post

Can Obamacare Fix Obama's Care?

(4) Comments | Posted January 31, 2014 | 11:59 AM

In early 2010, roughly one year after his inauguration, Barack Obama saw the White House physician. The circumstances of his visit led to days of testing using high-powered scans, invasive procedures and evaluations under anesthesia. This, the presidential check-up, may be an ideal symbol -- and a starting...

Read Post

Placebo Surgery: More Effective Than You Think?

(0) Comments | Posted January 7, 2014 | 6:28 PM

Got arthritis? Sham surgery is highly effective. Broken back? Sham surgery works. Torn meniscus? Have a sham.

Last week the New England Journal of Medicine published yet another trial showing that fake surgery can be as good as the real thing. This time the subjects were candidates for...

Read Post

The News About Tamiflu: It Doesn't Work

(5) Comments | Posted December 9, 2013 | 11:00 AM

Forget everything you've heard about the benefits of Tamiflu, the Roche corporation's blockbuster influenza drug. A new analysis that includes previously-unpublished trials offers a fresh, and very unflattering, perspective.

Selective publication, in which some trials of a drug are released publicly and others are not, is widely considered unethical....

Read Post

The Statin Insanity

(54) Comments | Posted November 15, 2013 | 7:05 PM

The medical student was confused. "Well, that's not good."

He was seeing, in black and white, the benefits and harms of statin medicines. After years of systematic inculcation about the power of cholesterol reduction, this was the first time he had seen the numbers.

"I don't get...

Read Post

Medical Tests: The Illusion of Reassurance

(6) Comments | Posted November 8, 2013 | 12:01 PM

Recently researchers asked a question that seems less like science, and more like science-fiction: Is it more comforting to have a medical test or to see a doctor?

If tests can provide more empathy than doctors, the rise of the machines is nigh. And yet, as a physician, I am...

Read Post

Mediterranean Diet vs. Cholesterol Pills: We Have a Winner

(9) Comments | Posted October 18, 2013 | 12:32 PM

The woman had sudden, squeezing chest pains that traveled to her arm. An intensive care nurse and the daughter of a heart patient, she knew the stakes. She informed her supervisor, summoned the elevator, and came directly to the ER, where she described her symptoms to me with seasoned calm....

Read Post